Almost ready to pick!
This is my Meyer lemon tree. It is now 3 years old. It produced no lemons the first year, and 3 the second year. This year it has doubled its output to 6 lemons, which are nearly ready to pick.
I have to bring it indoors once the temperatures at night begin consistently falling below 50 degrees, which is quite a chore. I have a 2 wheel dolly that I load it onto and roll it inside to my guest room/office/storage/cat feeding station. This room has the southern facing window where it continues to thrive through the winter until I can wheel it back outside in the spring.
It sometimes blooms around Christmas time and the whole house (it's a pretty small house) fills with the sweet scent of lemon blossoms. I try to help the pollination process by taking a small artists paintbrush and touching multiple flowers with pollen from its other flowers. It's supposedly self pollinating but in nature the butterflies and bees would be doing this anyway so I figure it can't hurt anything.
About a month later I will start to see tiny little green nodules emerge from the center of what was a flower. These are what will eventually become fruit, but many don't make it. There are always 10 times more flowers than lemons. Some of them dry up and fall off before they're even an inch long. Sometimes there are too many on one branch and I have to thin them out to keep the branch from breaking under their weight, which is always hard for me to do. It feels wasteful even though I try to get some juice from the discarded ones, but they are usually too hard and not very juicy yet.
It reminds me of business here at WA. There a lots of opportunities but not eveyone will survivie and thrive long enough to produce fruit, for whatever reason. And it seems sad and makes me wish things were different because some of them are friends. But it's part of the bigger plan I guess.
I do know that I am one of the flowers that will stay to become a fully ripened fruit, and although it's hard work (like moving a 4 ft tree twice a year) nothing will stop me!
I wish you all lemonade.