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Oranges are always a favourite at our house, especially Tangerines at Christmas but wouldn’t it be nice to grow your own Orange Tree.

Oranges and Lemons

Many children will not have seen oranges growing on trees except in books, on the television or maybe in garden centres. If you have a bit of time and a lot of patience (it can take 8 years for a tree to produce an orange) why not have a go at growing your own tree from pips that you have collected.

How to Grow your own Orange Tree

Peel your orange and break into segments, hold each segment up to the light you should be able to see the pips inside, carefully split the skin and remove the pips.

Rinse the pips in warm water (keep your pips moist this helps them to germinate).

Sowing Orange pips

Fill some small pots with compost and plant your pips about 1-1.5cm deep, one or two to a pot.

Water lightly to moisten the compost but not too much to make it soggy.

Make a label recording the date, what and how many seeds you have sown.

If you have a propagator put your pots inside and place on a warm, bright windowsill, alternatively push 2/3 sticks into the compost around the edge of the pot and cover with a plastic bag, tie loosely with string around the pot or use a rubber band.

At night remove your pots from the windowsill as it can become quite cold especially if you have the curtains closed, returning them during the day.

Check regularly that the compost is moist, once your seedlings appear remove their protective cover and place in a sunny position avoiding the midday sun.

Re-pot your plants individually as they grow.

When your plants are much larger stand them in a conservatory or porch or outside on a sheltered patio in warm weather during the summer bringing them inside, before any frosts, for the winter.

Why not try growing lemon or grapefruit pips too?

Have fun!

Gill

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