Tangerines Spliting & Transplanting Mature Japanese Maple

Question:

 I have a tangerine tree with a lot of green fruit, but when the fruit turns orange, they split.  I water the tangerine with a hose and let the water run for 20-25 minutes twice a week. How can I prevent this from happening?

Answer:

  • It's not unusual for tangerines to split and drop. A water problem may cause this or it could be the tree's age. Some have found that young trees are more prone to have split fruit. Eventually, they "grow out of it.” Irregular watering is one of the primary causes of citrus fruit splitting, but that doesn't seem to be the case. However, if you place the hose in the same spot, you could make a case for it. T
  • here isn't anything I could recommend now. I would suggest you do the following next year. After the rainy season concludes, I'd construct a six-inch-high watering basin around the tree. It should extend from the trunk to the drip line. I'd then fill this basin up a couple of times when you water. Citrus has a taproot, unlike other fruit trees, so there is minimal lateral branching. The majority of the roots are centered under the canopy. The basin ensures that the entire root ball receives moisture when you water.  

Question:

We have two mature Japanese Maples that are over twenty-five years old. They have outgrown their location, and I want to transplant them. Is this possible, and should I trim them before or after the move?

Answer:

  •  Now through the end of March is an excellent time to transplant mature Japanese Maples and many other plants. But, it's not as simple as it might seem because of the obstacles you will face.
  • The first thing I would do is evaluate the new location. You will need a protected spot, especially from the summer winds. Japanese Maple leaves will burn from the salt contained in the moist marine influence. If this is not possible, I would not attempt to move them.
  • Depending on the size of the trees, you'll need a root ball that is twenty-four inches square or larger. A structure, concrete walkways, and other established plants often make this a challenge. I'd prune the plants reducing the height and width before moving them. But be careful not to damage the shape as it takes too many years to reestablish once damaged.
    • The root ball will weigh several hundred pounds, so a lift or several individuals will need to move the root ball. Next, a truck will be necessary to transport the plants to their new location for transplanting. You could hire someone, but you may need several contractors to complete tack because of the distance.
  •  Finally, you complete the process by applying a Japanese Maple fertilizer to encourage new growth. I'm not sure it's really practical when all is said and done, given the issues and the resources required. However, this may be a moot point because of the sentimental value associated with these plants.