How To Grow A Lime Tree and Make Your Own Honey-Lime Vinaigrette

There are often two types of limes people think of, the common lime and the Key Lime. The most commonly sold lime in markets across America is the Bearss Lime, also known as the Persian Lime. Its thick skin lends itself to zesting and sweet and sour flesh to juicing. If you’re looking to grow your own lime tree, The Bearss lime tree is a spectacular option as it’s adaptable and will grow anywhere, including where citrus grows well, doesn’t grow well, indoors, outdoors, and it’s even a great container plant.

The Bearss lime tree is a beautiful aesthetic for any landscape as it produces a canopy of deep green leaves and blooms gorgeous white flowers for about two months of the year. These trees produce fruit all year round with a high yield, which means you’ll have more limes than you can use–making them an excellent gift for friends and family. In addition to all that, limes are great for digestion, boosting the immune system, healthy skin, prevention of kidney stones, and heart health.

When deciding upon if you want Dwarf, Semi-Dwarf, or Standard lime tree, you can consider a few of the following factors. A standard sized tree has a canopy that generally starts a few feet from the ground, eventually growing to allow people to walk or sit underneath it. Dwarf trees are genetically identical to standard citrus trees, but trimming the tips when the tree is very young creates a plant that grows rounder like a large bush. This variety is more accessible to harvest due to the lower canopy, but you will be unable to sit underneath the trees as they occupy a wider area at ground level. They are also great for containers and to keep a shorter tree to prevent blocking a view.

How To Plant?

The first thing you need to think about when growing your lime tree is its position. It’s essential to plant your tree where it’s going to get the most sun. To create a healthy growing environment for your lime tree, you will want to avoid waterlogged soil.

Step One: Plant in soil that drains well. Dig a hole that is as deep as the tree’s roots and at least twice as wide.

Step Two: Place the tree in the hole and backfill around the plant’s roots with a mixture of the native soil and high-quality planting mix with washed sand and organic fertilizer.

Step Three: Create a basin around the roots drip zone that water collects. Water deeply until the roots and nearby soil is saturated and reaches field capacity.

How To Care?

In order to grow the healthiest tree possible, newly planted trees need to be watered about twice per week. You can adjust the frequency based on weather conditions in your area and the soil type. To gather excess water for the tree’s roots, you can create a water well or basin around the drip zone. You’ll need to provide enough water to saturate the entire root zone. To satiate the tree, you can run a sprinkler for 20 minutes, use a bubbler system that can provide enough water in 6 minutes, or use a drip system for 2 hours.

Citrus trees need a balanced fertilizer. Always use the manufacturer’s general recommendations. Organic sources of fertilizer include manure and blood meal. Bone meal is an excellent source of phosphorus. Potash is often used as an organic potassium input in agriculture. Specialty fertilizers that contain a balanced amount of NPK are commonly available and often sold as citrus food.

You’ll need to prune your tree in the winter to maintain size and shape to prepare for spring growth. Then thin the tree in the spring and summer seasons by removing excessive fruits and any dry twigs and branches. Always cut off any new growth below the graft, or very low in the tree, to direct the plant’s energy to its main branches. If the plant provides an overly large quantity of fruits for that branch, remove excess fruit so that what remains grows larger and to prevent broken limbs. It’s also important to harvest ripe fruit to prevent undesired pests.

The basics of integrated pest management are cleanliness and the use of a combination of methods. Use organic pesticides when the pest population reaches a threshold that requires action. Horticultural oils such as Neem oil is an organic pesticide that controls tiny, soft-bodied insects. Use organic Bordeaux and Liqui-cop to manage fungus, causing diseases such as powdery mildew, rust, and leaf-curls.

Keep a clean environment, free of weeds, and dropped fruit that hosts insects or attracts animals. Harvest the fruit when it reaches size and store indoors. You can also use repellants and bird netting to protect your harvest from other animals.

When To Harvest?

When limes ripen, their skin changes from a dark glossy green to a lighter green. Typically, Bearss limes are harvested before ripening, while they are still green. If left on the tree, these limes will eventually turn yellow when they completely ripened, which creates a more bitter taste.

Honey-Lime Vinaigrette Recipe:

Ingredients for cooking healthy light dressings for vegetable salad: lemon (lime), olive oil, mustard, greens, on white concrete table, top view, copy space

Limes are a versatile ingredient that makes a big difference in your recipes. Use them for grilling, garnishing, and baking or to add zest to your favorite drinks, desserts, and meals.

Make use of your lime tree with this light and refreshing Honey-Lime Vinaigrette recipe.

Prep: 5 minutes
Servings: 8


  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup grapeseed oil


Blend lime juice, honey, mustard, lemon zest, garlic powder, salt, black pepper, and cumin in a blender; slowly pour olive oil and grapeseed oil into the mixture while blending to emulsify the oil into the juice.

You can use vegetable oil in place of grapeseed oil if preferred.

Store the vinaigrette in a sealed mason jar and store in the fridge. Use it within a week. Always shake the dressing well before serving. If oil solidifies while in the refrigerator, let it sit out at room temperature until it returns to liquid form.

You could also use this as a marinade for chicken or to drizzle over fish or sliced tomatoes and cucumbers.

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Learn more about Watering Citrus Trees.