En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - April 03, 2010

From: Houma, LA
Region: Southeast
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Strange produce from non-native lemon seed in Houma LA
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I grow a lemon tree from a seed. I grafted it from the same tree a year or so later. It is 15 years old and it only produce one year. The question is, the year it produce, the fruit was a pink grapefruit!! What is the answer and will it ever produce again?

ANSWER:

Before we get any deeper into this, let us explain that the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the use, protection and propagation of  plants native not only to North America but to the area in which the plants are being grown. None of the citrus fruits (or most of the other fruits and vegetables you would buy at a grocery store) are native to North America, so they are really all out of our area of expertise. We don't know the answer, but we will find some websites about what you have done and perhaps you can figure it out.

eHow How to Grow a Lemon Tree from Seed

Texas A&M Extension Horticulture Home Fruit Production - Lemons  "While cuttings and air layers will work, trees grown on their own roots are not as well-adapted to Texas soils. Seed can be used, but seedlings are slow to bear. Too, some of the seedlings may not come true-to-type."

TreeHelp.com Grafting Citrus Trees

Wikipedia Grapefruit

Okay, what you have here is a tree planted from the seed of a fruit that may not breed true from the seed, and then a graft a year later. Grafting a tree usually requires two trees, one root stock and one the plant you want to perpetuate. What was the other tree? We read all the websites above, and still have no clue what is the answer to your question. 

 

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Controlling pumpkin vine in British Columbia
July 15, 2008 - I have never grown pumpkins before but decided to try one plant this year. It seems to be taking over my small garden space. Can I prune it back? I only want one or two pumpkins for my grandchildre...
view the full question and answer

Non-native banana trees
June 06, 2008 - I recently planted two types of Banana trees, a Darjeeling and a Giant Nepal. I know that both are hardy to my zone 7 but that the Nepal needed heavy mulching. My first question is how long will it ta...
view the full question and answer

Non-native Bird of Paradise plant (Strelitzia reginae)
November 30, 2008 - I have two Bird of Paradise plants on my lanai (Marion County, FL) and they are both in large pots. Nobody but me seems to like them at my house and I have been asked if I could trim all the leaves o...
view the full question and answer

Identity of rubbery-looking tree with long green thorns
March 21, 2012 - I am trying to identify a tree that has a green rubbery look with long, sharp, green thorns. This tree is on my property in Conroe, TX and the soil type is Gladwater clay frequently flooded.
view the full question and answer

Help for a Transplanted Bougainvillea
April 22, 2014 - I recently planted a bougainvillea in our south-facing front yard. While planting it, we inadvertently severed a large portion of the root system from the plant. What, if anything, can we do to help...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center