Mexican Lime Tree Leaves Curling Up

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Why is my Mexican lime tree leaves curling up?

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Answer #1 · Maple Tree's Answer · Hi Rafael-There are usually two things that cause the curling of the leaves on citrus. If the leaves are curling and but still green not yellow or brown the tree may be getting too much water. Too much water will normally cause them to curl inward. Too little water on my lime tree normally will show up with some browning and the leaves cupping. Most citrus trees in the warmer growing months will only need one or two deep soakings a week. Areas that may get daily sprinklering may be staying to moist.
Leaf minors and other insects that suck the juices from the leaf will also cause leaf curl. Most of the time this leaf curl affects the new leaves with very little damage to the older leaves. Look closely at the curling leaves and especially inside the curled leaf. Leaf minors are small moths that lay eggs on the leaves. The feeding larvae feed by tunneling throughtout the leaves leaving visible trails. The larvae curl the leaves as protection for their next adulthood stage. Aphids and other insects that feed on the leaves can also cause leaf curl. Look closely at both sides of the curled leaves and inspect the inside of the curled leaf for any signs of small insects. I uploaded a few pictures of the damage to leaves that are infested with leaf minors. If you find any of these insect on the leaves you can use Neem oil or horticultural oil for control. There are also sticky traps that are available for leaf minors and other insects at many nurseries. I have never used them but have heard they can definitely trap enough of these pests to make a difference when placed near your tree. If your tree has a lot of damage you can prune off some of the infected foliage but as long as the leaves are mostly green they are still providing for the tree as long as the insects are being controlled. If you remove any of the e sure to spray any new foliage appearing to protect this new growth. Spraying every 5-14 days may be needed during times of a lot of new growth. Always read application instructions on the product label for proper most effective use.

After checking soil moisture and examining the leaves closely let me know what you find.


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Rafael Flores

Rafael Flores · Gardenality Stem · Zone 9B · 25° to 30° F
Thanks John. It appears to have been over watering which I did not think possible since it is 100+ everyday for the next two months.

8 years ago ·
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Maple Tree

Maple Tree · Gardenality Genius · Zone 10A · 30° to 35° F
My lime leaves not only curled but if it had too much water for a period of time would start to turn a little yellow. My lime always seemed to do better when the soil dried somewhat between watering. I know its hard when the weather is hot and the soil drains well but hopefully you can find over a period of time checking moisture how much watering a week it needs not to stay too wet. Let me know how you make out.

8 years ago ·
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