Why Is My Lemon Tree Going Yellow

Why is my lemon tree going yellow? There are many possible reasons for this, but the most common culprit is a lack of nutrients. The yellowing of lemon trees can be caused by a number of issues, including nutrient deficiency, disease, pests, and environmental stress. To make sure your lemon tree receives the proper nutrient balance, it’s important to fertilize regularly and to water deeply.

Nutrient Deficiency

The most common cause of yellow leaves on a lemon tree is a lack of nutrients, specifically nitrogen and phosphorus. A nutrient deficiency can be caused by soil that is poor in nutrients, or by too much fertilizer or other chemicals that are overloading the plant with nitrogen. In either case, the tree will benefit from additional fertilizers or amendments to the soil to ensure an adequate nutrient balance.

It’s important to note that every region has different soil needs and types. By conducting a soil test, you can better understand what your particular soil is lacking and make the right adjustments.

Additionally, in some cases, the soil may contain too much of certain elements, such as calcium or magnesium, which can lead to nutrient deficiencies. If the soil has too much of these elements, they can interfere with the absorption of other essential nutrients by the plant.

Another potential cause of nutrient deficiency is inadequate water. A lack of water can limit the amount of nutrients and oxygen the tree can absorb. If the tree is not getting enough water, or if the water is too low in quality, the tree may not be able to take up necessary nutrients.

Finally, nutrient deficiency can be caused by incorrect soil pH. pH levels that are too high or too low can limit the ability of the tree to absorb nutrients. To ensure the proper pH, it’s a good idea to conduct a soil test and adjust the pH as necessary.


Yellow leaves on a lemon tree can also be caused by a fungal or bacterial disease. To diagnose the problem, you’ll need to identify the symptoms, the exact location of the infected area and the type of disease.

Once you have identified the disease, you can work to eliminate the infection by removing any affected leaves and branches, and applying the right fungicide, if necessary. It’s a good idea to consult a professional for advice about the best treatment for your particular situation.

In addition, the soil around the tree should be kept clean, and any debris and dead branches should be removed. You should also take steps to improve the overall health of the soil and make sure the tree is getting enough sunlight and proper drainage.

Finally, keep an eye out for any changes in the soil, such as an increase in salt content. High levels of salt can stress the tree, which can make it more susceptible to disease, and thus lead to yellowing of the leaves.


Another potential cause of yellow leaves on your lemon tree is pest infestation. Common pests to watch out for include scale insects, aphids and mites. In addition, certain fungi and bacteria can also cause yellowing of leaves.

To get rid of pests, it’s essential to identify the type of pest you’re dealing with and then choose the appropriate treatment. Your local Cooperative Extension Office can provide information about how to safely and effectively get rid of pests in your area.

In addition, you should take steps to prevent future infestations. This might include regularly pruning branches and keeping the soil around the tree free of dead leaves and debris. You should also avoid overwatering and use the right insecticide if the infestation is severe.

Finally, it can help to encourage beneficial insects, such as ladybugs, which will help to keep pests away. You can also sprinkle diatomaceous earth around the tree, which is harmless to beneficial insects but can help to control harmful ones.

Environmental Stress

The yellowing of lemon tree leaves can sometimes be caused by environmental stress. This can be due to too much or too little sunlight, extreme temperatures, excessive wind, or poor soil drainage.

To reduce environmental stress, it’s important to make sure the tree is in the right location. If the tree is in an area with too much direct sunlight, it might be a good idea to move the tree to a shadier spot. The same holds true for temperature – if the region is too hot or too cold, it’s a good idea to make adjustments to the location of your tree.

In addition, it’s a good idea to keep the soil around the tree moist but not overly wet. Any drainage issues should be addressed and addressed quickly. Finally, make sure the soil is well aerated and that the tree is not being exposed to high winds.

Fertilizing & Pruning

Finally, if your lemon tree is still not looking as healthy as it should, it’s important to give it an extra boost of nutrition through fertilizing and pruning. Adding a balanced fertilizer to the soil will provide the tree with the nutrients it needs to grow healthy foliage and prevent yellowing.

It’s also important to prune the tree regularly to promote healthy growth and prevent infestations. Always use the right pruning tools and technique, and never cut too deeply. Pruning should also be done in moderation to ensure the tree does not become overly stressed.

Finally, make sure the lemon tree isn’t exposed to any other stressors or pests, and keep an eye out for any signs of disease or nutrient deficiencies. The sooner any issues are identified, the quicker you can address the problem and get your lemon tree back to looking its healthy, vibrant, yellow-green self.

Gordon Wesson is an environmentalist and author who lives in the Pacific Northwest. He has been writing for many years about topics related to trees, the environment, and sustainability. In particular, he is passionate about educating people on the importance of living in harmony with the environment and preserving natural spaces. He often speaks at conferences and events around the country to share his knowledge with others. His dedication to protecting our planet makes him one of the leading voices in his field today.

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