Horticulture :: Fruits:: Sweet Orange

Sweet Orange (Citrus sinensis)

The commercially cultivated variety is Sathukudi.

Soil and climate
Deep well drained loamy soils are the best for the cultivation of Citrus. The pH of soil should be 6.5 to 7.5 and EC of water less than 1.0.  A dry climate with about 50 – 75 cm of rainfall from June – September and with well defined summer and winter season is ideal. Sweet orange comes up well in tropical zone below 500 m. The extreme of temperature are necessary for achieving higher yield.

The ideal season for cultivation of sweet orange is July to September.

Planting material
Budded plants are the best planting materials. (Root Stock - Rangpur lime and rough lemon is mostly preferred).

Preparation of field
Dig pits at 75 cm x 75 cm x 75 cm size at 7 x 7 m spacing. Fill up the pits with top soil and 10 kg of FYM. Plant the budded plants in the centre of the pits and stake it.

Immediately after planting irrigate copiously. Irrigations may be given once in 10 days. Avoid water stagnation near the plant during monsoon and cyclone periods.

Manures and fertilizers per plant
Nitrogen has to be applied in two doses during March and October. However Farm yard manure, Phosphorous and Potash are to be applied in October.

Manures and Fertilizers

I year (kg)

Annual increase (kg)

From 6th year (kg)

















Manures are applied in the basin 70 cm away from the trunk and incorporated in the soil. Spray solution containing Sulphate of Zinc (0.5%), Manganese (0.05%), Iron (0.25%), Magnesium (0.5%), Boron (0.1%) and Molybdenum (0.003%) once in 3 months at the time of new flush production.  In addition to that apply 50 g in each of Sulphate of Zinc, Manganese and Iron per tree per year.

Plant protection
Leaf miner
Leaf minor can controlled by spraying Dichlorvos 76 WSC at the rate of 1 ml/lit or Dimethoate 30 EC 2 ml/lit or Fenthion 100 EC at the rate of 1 ml/lit at the rate of 1.5 ml/lit or 5% of neem seed kernel extract (NSKE) or neem cake extract or neem oil 3%.

Citrus root nematode
Citrus root nematode can be controlled by applying Pseudomonas fluorescens at 20g per tree at a depth of 15 cm and 50 cm away from the trunk for the management of slow decline due to the citrus root nematode  (Tylenchulus semipenetrans). Soil application of Phorate @ 2 g followed by drenching with Metalaxyl + Mancozeb 72 WP @ 0.1% 50 ml/ cutting/ poly bag/ kg of nursery soil for citrus decline.

Little leaf malady
To control little leaf malady, spraying Zinc sulphate at 1.0 per cent solution + Teepol 1 ml/lit of solution at various stages.

  1. New flush
  2. One month after
  3. At flowering and
  4. Fruit set

After cultivation
As intercultural operations remove the water shoots, rootstock sprouts, dead and diseased shoots. For higher productivity remove all the laterals upto 45 cm from ground level.

Legumes and vegetable crops can be raised as intercrop during pre-bearing age to get additional income.

Yield of crop starts bearing from 5th year after planting and the economic yield can be obtained up to 20 years after planting.

Depending upon the variety and season the yield of crop varies from 25 to 30 t/ha.

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