Yellow Leaves on Orange Tree – How to Fix

If you have yellow leaves on orange tree do not worry, this problem has a solution. However, first, we must know why our orange tree has yellow leaves. In this article, we will explain everything about the yellow leaves on orange tree.

The sweet orange tree (Citrus sinensis) ranks first among the citrus fruits consumed worldwide. It is native to China and northern Burma and has also been well known throughout the Mediterranean for about 3000 years.

Why are My Orange Tree Leaves Turning Yellow?

Why are My Orange Tree Leaves Turning Yellow? There can be several causes of yellow leaves on orange tree, for example, the tree could be suffering from excess watering or lack of nutrients, we will explain all the possible causes and how to solve them, don’t worry!

Yellow Leaves on Orange Tree Due to Excess Water

Yellow Leaves on Orange Tree Due to Excess Water. The most frequent cause of this problem is incorrect watering of the plant, which can be either excessive or lack of water.

Orange trees tend to prefer soils with an optimal drainage system, so very abundant irrigation or a generous rainy season usually affects the plant if the water stagnates in the soil.

On the other hand, water shortage causes dryness in its taproots, stress on the plant, and consequently the loss of its leaves. The leaves of the orange tree turn yellow due to lack of water, which is also accompanied by leaf loss.

For your orange tree to remain healthy it should be watered once a week during the summer and the winter only when the soil is quite dry, which can be every 3 weeks.

yellow leaves on orange tree excess water
Orange Tree Leaves Turning Yellow Due to Excess Water. The most frequent cause of this problem is incorrect watering of the plant, which can be either excessive or lack of water.

Orange Tree Yellow Leaves Due to Diseases and Pests

Some diseases and pests are the cause of yellow leaves on orange trees. We will now explain the main ones that affect the orange tree.

Phytophthora gummosis

Yellow Leaves on Orange Tree Due to Fungus (Phytophthora gummosis). This disease is caused by different species of Phytophthora. This fungus is found in the soil and infects the collar, trunk, main branches, and roots.

High soil moisture, and pH between 4 and 6, favor this fungus. Also, grafting below 12″ (30 cm) and an excess of nitrogen fertilization. Phytophthora spp. can remain in the soil for long periods. Humidity favors the reproduction and dissemination of the pathogen and, for this reason, its incidence increases during the rainy season or in poorly drained soils.

To prevent this fungus it is recommended to graft the plants above 12″ (30 cm) in height. Maintain adequate drainage to avoid water accumulation at the base. Control nitrogen fertilization doses.

Anthracnose

Orange Tree Yellow Leaves Due to Anthracnose. It is favored by high humidity and rainfall conditions. The disease is caused by fungi of the genus Colletotrichum. Affected plants show necrotic lesions on flower buds, fruits, and leaves.

In the case of orange leaves, the spots are irregular and vary in size.  If the infection is severe, intense defoliation occurs. It is usually associated with leaf spots caused by fungi of the genus Alternaria. How to get rid of Alternaria.

Collect and destroy diseased fruit to eliminate sources of infection. Prune affected branches and leaves and remove them from the lot, making sure to eliminate them so that they are not a source of inoculum. Apply cupric fungicides and benzimidazole fungicides preventively.

Iron Chlorosis or Iron Deficiency

Orange Tree Yellow Leaves Due to Iron Chlorosis or Iron Deficiency. If you have yellow leaves on orange tree, it may be due to a lack of iron.

To treat chlorosis, you should choose to provide the affected plant with iron chelate to restore the necessary levels to the plant and promote the creation of chlorophyll and the normal activity of the plant to recover its original greenness. By providing iron, the pH of the soil is lowered and the acidity of the soil is restored. You should measure the soil pH and correct it as needed.

Learn more about What is ferrous sulfate iron used for?

Orange Tree Yellow Leaves Due to Iron Chlorosis or Iron Deficiency.
Orange Tree Yellow Leaves Due to Iron Chlorosis or Iron Deficiency.

Tips to Avoid Yellow Leaves on Orange Trees

Tips to Avoid Yellow Leaves on Orange Trees. I always recommend disinfecting the tools with which we prune our plants, in this case, our orange tree.

It is advisable to use sharp tools that have been disinfected with alcohol to avoid the appearance of diseases such as viruses and fungi. Pruning orange trees every year is a must. I recommend you read this guide to know when and how to prune an orange tree 

We must also avoid excessive watering as already mentioned, otherwise yellow leaves will appear on the orange tree and this could end up rotting the roots of our plant.

Learn more about How to Plant Orange Seeds.

orange tree yellow leaves
Orange leaves turning yellow can occur due to different nutritional factors that are not balanced, such as chlorosis and iron deficiency, other nutritional deficits, pests that are making the orange tree sick, such as fungi, and inappropriate irrigation.
About Henry Morgan

We are the Morgan family, Henry, and Julia, both agronomists from the University of Michigan, where we met. We are experts in putting our hands in the soil and developing organic foods and improving production processes for decades. Likewise, we have worked for companies such as Mondelez International, BASF, Monsanto, etc. currently in our role as science writers for TheGardenStyle.com as well as advisors in promoting large scale food growing in urbanized areas. In this website, we share what we are most passionate about, gardening and farming. Enjoy and see real photos on our website.