Q: I have a ‘Meyer’ lemon in my backyard. Do I need to thin the fruit after it sets? I have hundreds of blooms and plenty of busy bees. If I do thin the fruit, what size should it be?
A: Yes, you have to thin the fruit on your tree or you’ll get lots of little bitty lemons, not the full-sized ones you expect. When a cluster has fruit a little bigger than your thumb, remove all of the small ones, leaving the biggest. Next, compare the sizes of fruit adjacent to each other on a branch. Remove the smaller ones so that fruits are no closer than five inches apart. This will give a good ratio of lemon tree leaves to fruit and will result in bigger, juicier lemons. Lemons are heavy feeders so be sure to fertilize the plant regularly and water in times of drought.