Why do my limes start to go bad at one end when ready to pick?

Q.

Hi there, just wondering why does my lime fruit start to go bad at stork end when it's ready to pick?

Neville Everest

A.

Hi Neville, this sounds like stem end rot, a wind blown or water splash fungal disease. If you are overhead watering we suggest stopping this, only water around the base of the lime tree. Pick fruit using snips or secateurs rather than pulling the fruit off, make sure the secateurs or snips are cleaned with methylated spirits before and after pruning as these can spread disease.

A copper spray may help protect the tree and fruit, it won’t cure what has already happened. Regularly feed citrus with a specially blended fertiliser such as Tui Citrus Food. Keep the tree well watered, especially in summer. Mulch around it to conserve soil moisture during dry periods. Limes love the heat, ensure it is planted in the best and warmest position in the garden with good air flow around the tree. You should still be able to use the fruit.

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