How to Germinate Tangerine Seeds
Tangerines (Citrus reticulata) are citrus fruit similar to small, sweet, loose-skinned oranges. Originally from Southeast Asia and southern China, a tangerine tree can be grown in California and other areas of the United States, in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 8b through 11, notes Floridata.
By growing tangerines, you can save money, add ornamental value to your home or garden, and stop worrying about chemicals used on the fruit you eat. While tangerine trees are usually started by grafting, growing a tangerine tree from seed is a satisfying long-term project.
Disinfect Tangerine Seeds
Fill the sink with water and add 1 teaspoon of bleach. Wash the tangerine seeds in the liquid to disinfect them. Rinse them off with water. Skip this step if you purchased your seeds and didn’t extract them directly from the fruit.
Begin Seed Germination
Soak the seeds in water for eight hours to help promote the germination process.
Prepare Seed Pots
Sanitize the pot or flats you will be using by soaking them in diluted bleach for 15 minutes, advises Fine Gardening. Once dry, fill a 3-inch diameter pot with moist potting mix up to approximately 1 inch from the top. Tamp the soil with your fingers so it’s firm in the container. As an alternative, use a seed-raising flat or peat pellets.
Growing Tangerines in Pots
Place up to three seeds on the soil surface, spaced an equal distance apart. Cover them with a 1/2-inch layer of soil. Lightly press down on the soil to firm it over the seeds.
Moisten Tangerine Seeds
Fill a spray bottle with water and use it to moisten the top layer of soil. Pouring water onto the soil may work as well, but be careful not to wash away the seeds or get the soil too wet which may cause a fungal infection, notes Fine Gardening.
Cover Seed Pots
Stretch a piece of clear plastic wrap over the pot to insulate the seeds. Secure the plastic with an elastic band. This helps to keep the soil moist.
Maintain Warm Temperatures
Place the pot in a warm room so the seeds can germinate. Check the soil regularly and spray with water as needed to keep it moist at all times. Aim for a temperature between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Avoid drafty windows and place a heating pad under the pot or position it near a heater, if needed.
Expose Seedlings to the Sun
Relocate the pot once the seeds germinate. Expect the seeds to germinate over a period of two weeks. Remove the plastic wrap and place the pot in a location where it’s exposed to sunlight.
Transplant Tangerine Seedlings
When they are 4 inches tall, transplant the tangerine seedlings to larger pots. If you live in a warmer climate, you can also transplant directly into the garden, after the last frost in your area. Tangerine trees grown from seed may not bear fruit for 10 years. Fruit on seed-grown trees may not be the same as the fruit from which the seed was taken.How to Germinate Tangerine Seeds. Tangerines (Citrus reticulata) are citrus fruit similar to small, sweet, loose-skinned oranges. Originally from Southeast Asia and southern China, tangerines can be grown in California and other areas of the United States, in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 8b … ]]>