Growing an Orange Tree Indoors
I started an orange tree from seed and now it’s over 6 feet tall. I keep it in a big container, but am wondering if I can transplant it outside to my backyard. How can I help it survive our cold South Dakota winters? Do I need to grow another tree to pollinate it?
I am afraid your orange tree, like other southern plants, is not hardy enough to survive your cold winters. This means you need a large sunny location to grow it indoors all year round or a few strong friends to help you move it out for the summer and back indoors in winter. You can prune your orange in late winter to somewhat reduce the size and remove any wayward, crossing or drooping branches. Add some supplemental light when growing plants indoors to increase the chance of flowering and fruiting. Fertilize in spring and summer with a balanced fertilizer. Switch to a flowering plant fertilizer high in phosphorous if blooms do not develop. Further increase the chance of flowering by keeping the plant somewhat potbound. With proper care and a bit of luck you may have oranges to harvest one of these winters.