Citrus trees are very rewarding plants to look after, providing endless interest as the scented flowers appear in Spring; small fruits set as the flowers fade; fruits steadily grow over six months until they ripen to orange or yellow; and the fruits are either picked or remain decoratively on the tree for 3 - 10 months after ripening.
Care : Keep In good light, above 4C, and ensure as much ventilation as is reasonable, given the weather conditions. A conservatory is ideal, with two or three months in a sheltered spot outside in warm summer weather if desired. If indoors, keep near a light window in a cool room (best not to be kept in a room with constantly high heating).
Water thoroughly each time the surface of the compost begins to dry: this may be daily in sunny summer weather, or three weekly in cloudy winter weather. Don't give water before the plant needs it or the compost will become soggy and the roots begin to rot. Feed weekly during strong growth periods, preferably with a special citrus fertiliser containing high trace elements, or with a seaweed based fertiliser. Take the pot outside once or twice a year to wash the compost right through using lots of clean water to remove any build up of excess fertiliser salts. If needed repot in Spring, using a course container compost. Pinch out growing tips of longer branches to encourage growth near the middle of the tree; prune to shape if required, just as new growth is beginning to sprout in the Spring.
If you lose all the leaves through drying out, do not despair! Trim back all the branches by one third, give water again, keep the compost moist but not soaking until the leaves begin to grow again.