There are few things as rewarding as growing a plant from seed, and an orange tree is the pinnacle of reward, especially if you live in the cold, cold North. The next time you're eating an orange, save those seeds and follow these steps to grow your own orange tree.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Orange seeds
- Sterile potting soil
- Paper or plastic cup
Save your orange seeds. Immediately wash them in tepid water and begin the planting process. You can use the paper towel method for germination, but the soil method, described here, is more effective.
Prepare a container with sterile potting soil. Before filling it with soil, create drainage holes. Paper cups tend to dry out sooner, so if you are punching ice-pick-sized holes in the bottom of the container for drainage, do about four for plastic and two for paper.
Plant the seeds 1/2 inch under the potting soil. Add enough water to moisten the soil, but don't let it get soggy.
Cover the cup with either a plastic bag or plastic wrap. Keep checking to make certain that it remains moist.
Store the pot in a warm place. Sunlight is not necessary at this time. Directly in front of a register is not a good idea because of the drying effect. Atop an electrical appliance like a television or refrigerator is usually best.
Move to a sunny area and remove the plastic once the seed has sprouted. Maintain moisture. Transplant to a more permanent container when the seedling is large enough.
Tips and warnings
- Fungus can destroy your young plants, so make certain that you eliminate as many possibilities of mold as you can, including using only sterile soil.
- During winter months when the air is particularly dry, covering the seedling and cup with a plastic sandwich bag left open at the bottom will help to retain moisture.