Smith Red Orange (Citrus sinensis ‘Smith Red Valencia’)
Smith Red Orange
The Smith Red Orange is a unique and flavorful citrus fruit. When you peel open this fruit, the rich, red flesh may fool you into believing you’re about to bite into a blood orange. Don’t be fooled. The Smith Red is actually a Valencia orange and is packed with juicy, sweet flavor. The Smith Red is one of the sweetest oranges you can grow.
It loves to grow in cooler climates. One of the most cold-hardy orange varieties, the Smith Red thrives in cooler conditions. In fact, cooler winters actually make this fruit even sweeter. You’ll still need to bring it inside when it freezes, but you don’t have to worry about surprising colder nights killing your tree.
Get ready for a bountiful harvest. Most valencias harvest in the spring and summer, but the Smith Red produces fruit in late winter. The firm peel keeps the fruit fresh on the branch, so you can pick your oranges all the way into spring. You’ll get a huge harvest of fruit, producing up to 20 lbs. after the 2nd or 3rd year. If you run out of room in your refrigerator, remember that your friends and family will love the gift of these unique and flavorful oranges.
Warm up your home during the winter. Even if you live in a warmer climate, this tree makes a great air freshener in the winter months. By bringing your tree inside, you’ll permeate your home’s atmosphere with the refreshing and sunny smell of oranges.
The bright red color makes this orange stand out. From deep, red orange juice to enticing garnishes, the Smith Red orange’s color makes every meal interesting. Impress your guests by adding the exciting color of the flesh and peel to your salads and meat dishes, or liven up weekend breakfast with a fresh-squeezed deep red juice.
The beautiful colors will stand out in your landscape. Adding interest anywhere you place it, the dark green foliage, large, white blooms and red-orange fruit will pop against the rest of your garden. The harvest looks amazing against bare trees in winter, and you’ll love the cheerfulness it adds to your yard.
Start growing these unique, delicious oranges today. Whether you want to liven up your home and garden, give your family the treat of spontaneous, healthy snacks or impress your guests with creative dishes, the Smith Red Orange tree has everything you’re looking for. The uniqueness of the fruit, makes this tree a hit, so don’t miss your chance.
|Hardiness zone||4-11 patio / 8-11 outdoors|
Choose a spot in your yard that receives at least 6 hours of sun every day. Make sure the soil is well-drained and the area is free from grass, which will compete for water and nutrients. Dig a hole in the ground that is twice as wide as the root ball. Place your tree in the hole, with 1 inch of the root ball sticking out from the top of the soil. Water thoroughly after planting. Add a thick layer of mulch around the base of the tree, but keep the mulch 6 inches away from the tree trunk.
Plant your tree in a large barrel such as a whiskey barrel or a 20-gallon pot. Plant in well-draining soil and make sure your container has proper drainage holes. Your tree may become heavy, so adding casters to the bottom of your container can help you transport your tree inside during the winter. Place a layer of rocks on the bottom of your container to aid in drainage, then add your soil and tree, making sure the tree stands vertical and upright. Bring your tree inside when the temperature reaches below 25 degrees Fahrenheit.
You only need to water your tree when the soil is dry. For trees planted in the ground, check the soil at a depth of 5 inches. For container plants, check the soil at a depth of 2 inches. Depending on the humidity in your area, you will likely only need to water your tree once a week. The roots of the orange tree are wide, so be sure to water past the drip line for trees that are planted in the ground.
You will need to add a citrus fertilizer to your tree during its harvest. When you begin to see fruit, apply your first round of citrus fertilizer according to package directions for the size of your tree. Add additional doses of fertilizer every month or two during the entire harvest season. You will also need to add a dose of fertilizer twice during the dormant season. As your tree matures, you can increase the time between dosing during the harvest season, and you can skip the dormant fertilization all together.
It is not recommended that you prune orange trees, expect to remove dead and diseased branches. You can prune your tree to maintain its shape and height, but be sure to do so before the harvest season. If your tree is planted outside, you will need to whitewash any pruned branches to protect them from chill.
When watering your tree, spray the leaves and branches with a hose to knock off any larva or eggs. If you see any eggs, larva or worms sprayed off, be sure to put them in a sealed trash bag and throw them away to prevent them from re-inhabiting the tree. Keep the area around your tree free from grass and prune off any branches that touch the ground. These measures will prevent ant infestations. You may also spray your tree with insecticidal soap at the beginning of the harvest season. If your tree becomes infested, you will need to use an insect oil to rid the tree of pests and prevent diseases.
Do not use color as an indicator of whether or not your orange is ripe. Instead, learn your tree’s habits by occasionally picking fruit to determine how ripe it is. Ripe fruit will be firm and juicy, but not soft or moldy. You can wait for fruit to fall or you can pull the fruit from the branch.
Once picked, oranges will not continue to ripen. You can store oranges in your pantry for up to a week. However, oranges will also stay fresh in the refrigerator for a month. To freeze oranges for juicing, simply wash them and cut them in half. They will keep in freezer safe containers for up to a year. You can also peel and cut your oranges and freeze them in the same way. You can also use a wet pack method, which involves storing peeled oranges in a container with a 40% sugar-water syrup. This process keeps the oranges very juicy and sweet.
|Common name||Smith Red Orange|
|Botanical name||Citrus sinensis 'Smith Red Valencia'|
|Plant type||Fruit Trees, Bushes|
|Hardiness zone||4-11 patio / 8-11 outdoors|