Pruning lemon tree

This time we want to talk about the procedure to follow to prune lemon tree. Therefore, we will mention the techniques, main characteristics and everything related to this millenary practice.

It has been mentioned on other occasions that pruning fruit trees is a practice applicable in most species. It is carried out with the aim of achieving more favorable forms, moderating, as well as regulating the balance between vegetation and production.

It is also used as a way to rejuvenate those trees that are aged, to eliminate dry, diseased branches or those that are more located. Here are the different ways to prune lemon tree:


Basically, pruning lemon tree is about the removal of growth points and therefore is a procedure that is carried out by cutting the tender branches. As a result, the breakdown of the apical dominance of a more vigorous shoot occurs, as well as the promotion of lateral shoots. It is often used to stimulate the opening of a cup or to delay growth in height.

Thinning pruning

In this case it is about pruning lemon tree eliminating the total of the branches from its base. Its objective is to decrease the density of a cup, as well as excess foliage, all with the intention of allowing light to penetrate inside. Its application does not have much affectation in terms of the shape and size of the lemon tree.


This is another of the processes that are followed when pruning lemon, which in this case consists of the elimination of the tender shoots known as pacifiers. These shoots are those that are born from the main stems of the plant, so their cutting has to be done before they require a high consumption of energy in the plant.

Formation pruning

To prune lemon tree under the training technique, it must be applied during the first years of the lemon tree and aims to form its structure and especially, make the distribution of its branches more balanced.

Lemon trees are usually implanted as a size between 60 to 70 cm in height, without ramifications and on the top 10 cm, 4 to 6 branches are allowed to grow that should be distributed evenly around the main stem, which will then be known as the primary branches.

The first shoot, which is given one per bud, should be allowed to grow about 40 cm, while the second, which is given one or two for each primary branch, should be allowed to create 50 cm, while the third shoot, one or two per secondary branch, between 60 to 70 cm. From this moment, the lemon tree is allowed to grow more or less freely, taking into account that both the distribution and the quantity and length of these branches, is managed through pruning, as the lemon tree grows.

All this should be done over 12 to 18 months from planting, plus it should be done manually, using scissors and sometimes by pinching the ends of young shoots.

Fruiting or Maintenance Pruning

It is considered the most important lemon pruning due to the volume of the plant to be pruned, as well as its impact on the cost, productivity and longevity of the plant. Its importance increases when the production is destined to the market of fresh fruits. It is characterized by being a pruning where cuts are carried out for cleaning, thinning and cutting that are intended to balance the distribution of the fruits, as well as eliminate in the early stages, the part of the buds that will give rise to the next production. Thanks to this pruning it is possible to improve the quality, size, as well as the distribution of the fruits in the tree and of course its value in the market.

Rejuvenation pruning

It is a pruning that is applied in plantations that have a very high productive value and that have aged or that have suffered damage due to different factors.

Pruning consists of the removal of an important part of the crown, which is done by cutting the branches that have the largest diameter above the cross of the tree. What is sought is to stimulate the physiologically young buds in such a way that an outbreak of great vigor occurs that rejuvenates the plant.

Cleaning pruning

In this case it is a pruning that consists of the elimination of dry, broken, sick branches or that are affected by some type of pest. It is carried out manually using scissors or even saws, all with the intention of improving the quality of the fruits and avoiding ramming or health problems.


Website | + posts

Robert Asprin, APD is a non-dieting Accredited Practicing Dietitian passionate about inspiring positive changes in eating and lifestyle behaviors to help improve health while nurturing relationships with food and body.

Robert Asprin

Robert Asprin, APD is a non-dieting Accredited Practicing Dietitian passionate about inspiring positive changes in eating and lifestyle behaviors to help improve health while nurturing relationships with food and body.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *