We are open 9am-5pm Monday to Saturday

​09 407 1645 | info@plantzone.co.nz

How to Grow Oranges

Oranges are very good for you. They are a good source of fibre, vitamin C, folate and many other beneficial nutrients – and are great to grow at home.


The seedless ‘Valencia’ orange is the best orange variety for most areas of New Zealand. It has few or no seeds. It is a fast-growing, hardy tree. The fruit ripens early (mid-September), but hold well on the tree for many months, making it a sweeter fruit than most other oranges in cooler areas

Navel oranges are rated very highly for flavour. The ‘Washington Navel’ orange produces its superbly sweet fruit in early winter.

The Famous Kerikeri’s Orange known all over New Zealand is the variety called ‘Parent Navel’ and is similar to other Navels but has a sweeter and larger fruit. Ripens in August.

Harwood Late are excellent for juicing. They are thick-skinned fruit that ripens in late winter.

Kumquat trees are small and shapely with dense foliage and make an attractive ornamental shrub. They are very hardy and after a long, warm summer, produce heavy crops of small, round, waxy, golden yellow to orange fruit. Mainly use for ornamental display, in marmalade and preserves.

Ask about the best variety for your situation.

Preparation and Planting
  • Choose the variety best suited to your location and needs.
  • Select a sunny position with well-drained soil and protection from cold winds and heavy frost.
  • There are dwarf varieties of Oranges that are perfect for pots and small garden spaces. Dwarf Valencia or Dwarf Navel are ideal for this purpose with full sized fruits on smaller growing trees.
  • Dig a hole twice the size that is needed and dig in a high quality soil improver and some organic Citrus fertiliser.
  • In heavy clay soils, it’s best to put some extra effort into preparation. Before planting, raise the level of the bed as much as possible, dig in gypsum and plenty of composted organic matter.
  • Remove the new orange plant from the container and tease the roots to encourage root growth into the soil.
  • Position the plant in the hole and backfill with the blend of soil/soil improver and gently firm down.  Form a raised or doughnut shaped ring of soil around the outer edge of the plant’s root zone to keep water where it’s needed.
  • Water in well after planting and keep the soil moist for several weeks while the new plant establishes.

Caring for your Orange Tree
  • A good regular supply of water is needed for reliable fruit production. Water your tree every 7 to 10 days during the summer.
  • Oranges are prolific producers of fruit and require generous applications of citrus food. It is best to fertilise your trees in late summer/early autumn and again in late winter/early spring. Ensure to follow the directions on the packet and water well before and after the application.
  • Pruning your tree is important to ensure good healthy growth and an abundant harvest of fruit. Pruning is best completed in late winter/early spring after the main harvest. Prune for a good shaped tree and remove any weak or damaged branches.
  • Remove any small fruit that develop within the first two years – thinning excess fruit when they’re small will encourage better sized and tasting fruit to develop in the coming years.
Pest Watch.

There are a few pests and diseases that may affect orange trees. These include Scale, Leaf Miner, Stink Bugs and Sooty Mould. If you spot a problem, bring in a picture and we can advise on the best method of control.

Enjoy the convenience of growing fresh and tasty oranges at home.


Go to Top