When Will My Lemon Tree Set Fruit?

“I have a lemon tree that’s five, or six, years old. I was wondering how old they have to be to produce fruit, and if there has to be two of them, or is cross-pollination not necessary?” Question from Royce of Texas

Answer: A lemon tree should be fruitful by five years of age. Most lemons are self-fruitful and do not require cross-pollination, but they do require bright sunlight and good care to flowering and fruiting. Has your tree begun to flower? If so, give it good care and it should begin fruiting for you. For care instructions, I recommend you read our article titled Growing Lemons, Oranges and Other Citrus Indoors (click here to view the article). It will give you all the information you need to encourage your indoor lemon to fruit.

Happy gardening!

Jessie Keith

Black Gold Horticulturist

How Much Water Should I Give My Indoor Succulents?

“I seem to have a problem keeping my plants happy. What is a good amount of water for succulents?” Question from Becky of Cambridge, Nebraska

Answer: It depends on the time of year and climate. It is very easy to overwater indoor succulents, especially in the winter months. Overwatering leads to root and crown rot, real succulent killers.

Watering Succulents from Winter to Fall

In general, succulents require little to no water in winter. This mimics the natural dry season that they experience in the wild. During the growing months (spring through fall), give them limited water. I often water mine between two to four times a month, depending on how hot and dry it is. In drier weather, I water them well once a week, or four times a month.

It is also essential to plant them in a very fast-draining mix, like Black Gold Cactus Mix. This will ensure that less water is held at their root zone, which will discourage rot. Also, be sure to give them as much indoor sunlight as possible. (Click here to learn more about growing succulents indoors.)

Happy succulent growing,

Jessie Keith

Black Gold Horticulturist


Light for Indoor Succulents

“How much sun (if any) do indoor succulents need?” Question from Diane of Palmyra, New Jersey

Answer: Most popular indoor succulents originate from semi-desert to desert environments where they experience hot sun during the day and cool temperatures at night. That means they tend to grow best if provided bright sunlight. In some instances, certain succulents also grow well in partial sun or bright, filtered light. One of the best able to withstand lower light is Sanseveria (Click here to learn more about growing Sansevieria). Foxtail agave (Agave attenuata, photo above), giant gasteria (Gasteria acinacifolia), and torch aloe (Aloe aristata) are three more succulents that will grow well in lower light.

Indoor succulents also tend to require little to no water during the winter months. This mimics the winter dry season that they experience in their natural habitats, so be sure to water them very sparingly during the cold season. It also pays to plant them in a premium, fast-draining mix, like Black Gold Cactus Mix!

Happy succulent growing!

Jessie Keith

Black Gold Horticulturist