Official State Fruit of Florida

Lorea Thomson
Posted by Lorea Thomson
Updated on
Published in Communities

To grow an orange tree in your backyard is one of the benefits of Palm Beach County living. Florida designated the orange as the official state fruit in 2005 due to the efforts of teacher Janet Shapiro and her students at Southside Elementary School. The teacher and her students realized that although the orange blossom was the state flower and orange juice the state beverage, Florida had no state fruit! 

That has now been resolved. The orange is the state fruit of the Sunshine State. Try and grow your own citrus in Palm Beach County. Here are all the basics and tips you need to know about growing citrus trees. Use this guide for all types of citruses and most other fruit-producing trees including avocado, mango, and litchi.

Citrus needs a sunny, well-drained spot to thrive.

Planting citrus 12 to 15 feet from the house and other trees is ideal.

Clear away grass from the area.

Dig a hole 1-1/2 times the size of the container.

Place the plant a little higher than the soil surface, fill in around the root ball, and pack the dirt firmly. The top of the plant's soil as it was in the container should still be visible.

Do not mulch. This holds in unwanted moisture.

Water once a day for the first three to five days by filling the bowl with water and letting it drain.

After the initial three to five days, water the tree once or twice a week during winter, and two to three times a week in summer, depending on rainfall.

Add composted cow manure to the hole. Do not add topsoil or peat moss. It will keep the soil too moist. Citrus trees do not like staying damp and need to dry out between waterings.

To grow an orange tree successfully, fertilizing is a necessity.

After the tree has been in the ground for a month, apply slow-release citrus fertilizer.

Citrus fruit, especially oranges, are a major part of Florida's economy. Florida produces most of the citrus fruit grown in the United States. Reported in 2006 that 67 percent of all citruses, specifically, 74 percent of oranges, 58 percent of tangerines, and 54 percent of grapefruit are grown in Florida.

Try and grow your own citrus in Palm Beach County.



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