Oranges are evergreen trees. So, when the orange leaves start turning yellow I can understand your concern. This problem needs to be resolved soon. Because we don’t want this yellowing of leaves to affect the yummy oranges.
At this point, you have to inspect what is exactly causing the yellowing and start the exact treatment for it. Otherwise, you might end up giving them the wrong treatment.
So, why are the orange leaves turning yellow?
There are 7 reasons that can turn the lush green leaves to yellow. Those are unsuitable weather, transplant shock, diseases, pests, nutrient deficiencies, wrong watering, and soil problems.
The good news is- this article will help you to identify the problem with proper solutions. Keep reading the article to learn the details about how to treat yellow leaves on your orange trees.
Let’s get down to business-
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Why are the Orange Tree Leaves Turning Yellow?
1. Unsuitable Weather
Extreme cold and hot temperatures can stress the plant. As a result, the leaves of your orange tree will turn yellow and start falling off.
It usually happens during seasonal changes when the temperature goes above 90ºF or below 30ºF.
If it is too hot then provide your orange tree with enough water and afternoon shade. If the temperature is too cold then cover the tree with a plastic cloth during the night. In the case of potted oranges, keep them indoors during these seasonal changes. But make sure the indoor temperature is suitable enough for the oranges.
2. Transplant Shock
Transplanting can stress your orange trees. If you have yellow leaves on your orange trees and you’ve recently transplanted them, this means your orange tree is in transplant shock. The same can happen when you re-pot the potted oranges.
Transplanting shock is very common. And there is nothing to worry about. The orange tree will usually take some time to overcome the shock. Meanwhile, you need to provide it with sufficient water to help the tree through the healing process.
Also while transplanting make sure you are not damaging the root. Plant them in loamy and well-drained soil. Remember to water the orange tree generously right after transplanting.
3. Wrong Watering
Watering can be a little tricky for orange trees because they have a shallow root system. The most common reason for yellow leaves on oranges is overwatering. Too much water makes the leaves yellow and wilting. Overwatering also brings fungal diseases like root rot.
You need to water correctly to fix these yellow leaves. Get a moisture meter so you don’t have to guess how much to water every time (Our pick: Atree Soil Soil Tester Kits with Moisture, Light, and PH Test for Garden).
On average water the orange tree once a week. Never let your oranges stay in waterlogged condition. Make sure the soil drains the water very well. So that the roots can grow freely. The yellow leaves of your orange tree will turn back green as soon as the water balance is restored.
4. Nutrient Deficiency
When your orange tree lacks some nutrients, it’s common for its leaves to start turning yellow. Because a good amount of nutrients are required for photosynthesis. So without the right nutrients, the oranges cannot produce enough food for themselves.
Fertilizing is also very important because without proper nutrients the fruit quality will be hampered.
Almost all kinds of deficiency turn the leaves yellow. So get the best quality balanced citrus fertilizer for your orange trees to keep them healthy (our pick: Miracle-Gro Citrus, Avocado, & Mango Food). Fertilize them in the growing season.
You can also try homemade fertilizers and Epsom salt solutions to provide the nutrient. Here is an amazing homemade fertilizer recipe for you.
#Recipe 1:- Homemade Fertilizer Recipe
- 400 gram of any fruit (pumpkin, zucchini, banana, mango, etc.) But avoid citrus fruits.
- The best combination is Banana: Zucchini: Pumpkin
- 300 gram of Sugar
- Mash the fruits in a bowl
- Then add the sugar and mix well
- Keep this mixture covered loosely and let it stay for 7-15 days for fermentation
- After fermentation, you will get juice.
- Drain the juice and store it in a bottle for future use.
- Add 3 tablespoons of this mixture in 10 liters of water
- Apply this solution directly into the soil near the root of your orange tree.
5. Root Rot Disease Of Orange
Root rot is a very common fungal disease of orange trees. It is mainly caused by overwatering the plants. You see when the orange plants are overwatered the roots cannot breathe within the soil properly. The root gets damaged and becomes unable to supply the necessary water and nutrients to the tree. As a result, the leaves turn yellow.
Fungal problems are very tricky to get rid of. You need to start the treatment as early as possible. Otherwise, it can kill the orange tree.
But before choosing a fungicide make sure it’s very good quality and nontoxic for fruits. Apply the best fungicide on the base of your orange tree (Our Pick: Bonide Copper Fungicide). Apply by following the label instructions and keep notes when the fruits can be harvested after the fungicide application.
Root rot fungus can survive in the soil for a long time. So, If you suspect root rot in your potted oranges then, repot them in freshly prepared soil. Prune off the affected branches and pick out the yellow leaves from the tree.
Try these two amazing recipes to treat fungal problems on your Orange tree:
# Recipe 1:- Baking Soda Spray Recipe
- 5 teaspoons of baking soda
- 2 teaspoons of liquid soap
- 1 gallon of water
- Mix the baking soda with water
- Then add the liquid soap.
- Apply it on your orange tree leaves twice a week until the problem solves.
#Recipe 2:- Vinegar Spray Recipe
- 5 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar
- 5 liters of water
- Few drops of liquid dishwashing soap
- Mix the ingredients very well
- Apply it on your orange tree twice a week until the problem is solved.
Note: Use the homemade recipes on a small orange leaf first. If the leaf burns then dilute the solution. Then try again in another small leaf.
6. Pests On Orange Tree
Many insects often feed on the orange leaves and turn them yellow and curled. If environmental stress or watering is not the issue then it’s time to look for the pests. Aphids and whiteflies feed on the leaves and suck the nutrients out, turning them yellow.
They are very tiny insects so it’s very hard to notice them until they have attacked severely. Look on the underside of the leaves and look out for sticky substances on the orange leaves for their presence.
Spray the orange trees with a blast of water. But when the attack is severe you have to spray insecticides. Not all insecticides are good for the tree or the environment. So, you need to pick the best quality insecticide that won’t toxify the orange fruits (our pick: Monterey organic Garden Insect Spray).
Introduce some natural predators like ladybugs and lace wigs to your garden. So that they can prey on the aphids and whiteflies.
You can also take natural control with these homemade insecticides.
#Recipe 1:- Horticultural Oil Recipe
- 3 teaspoons of liquid dishwashing soap
- 250 ml of any cooking oil
- Mix these ingredients very well and
- Store them as a stock mixture in a bottle.
- Add 1 tablespoon of this mixture with every cup of water and pour it into the sprayer.
- Spray very thoroughly on your orange leaves twice a week
#Recipe 2:- Neem Oil Recipe
Neem oil always comes in very handy against any insect and fungal attacks.
- 3 tablespoons of Neem oil
- 5 liters of water
- Few drops of liquid dish soap (optional)
- Mix the neem oil with water.
- Add the liquid dish soap to improve the performance of the spray
- Then pour it into the sprayer and spray it twice a week on your orange tree.
#Recipe 3:-Alcohol Spray Recipe
- 250 ml of isopropyl alcohol
- 1 liter of water
- Add the alcohol and water into a mixing bowl and stir slowly
- Put the mixture into the spray bottle.
- Spray the mixture on your orange tree.
- Repeat twice a week as long as you see pests on your tree
7. Soil Problem
The wrong kind of soil can create some problems for oranges. One of them is yellow leaves. If the soil is too compact or waterlogged then the orange trees will not survive very well. The compact soils will prevent the root from absorbing necessary nutrients and water.
Soil pH is also a vital issue. Too acidic or basic soil can cause the yellowing of leaves. The orange trees prefer the pH around 6-7. Even, they can tolerate up to pH 5.5. But when the soil pH goes above or below the range the oranges fail to produce good quality fruit
When your soil pH is not within the range, try to amend it with acidic nutrients or lime. A good dose of fertilizer will also help to some extent. Make sure the soil is loose and loamy. Add 1-2 inches of organic mulch to improve the soil quality. In the case of your potted oranges, repot them in better-suited soil.
The orange fruits on green trees are eye-catching scenery. But when their leaves start turning yellow, the whole scenario turns into a gloomy one.
If your tree could speak to you then you’d surely hurry to give the proper treatments. Since this isn’t possible, it’s up to you to keep an eye on the stress symptoms and start to help them.
I hope this article helped you to identify and correct the problems. The good news is you can apply the measures on any kind of your orange varieties such as mandarin, tangerine, Bergamont, Clementines, etc.