All About the Cara Cara Orange Tree

All About the Cara Cara Orange Tree

4 minute read

All About the Cara Cara Orange Tree


A Cara Cara orange tree (Citrus × sinensis 'Cara Cara') is a variety of sweet navel orange known for its tangy, almost berry-like flavor. This sets it apart from other orange varieties. Its taste is often described as less acidic and more complex than classic orange varieties like the Washington or Valencia Orange. The Cara Cara is one of our most popular orange trees to grow because of its delicious and vibrant colored flesh, and the tree’s relatively compact size. If you're interested in growing a Cara Cara orange tree in a pot, here's how you can care for it:


1. Choosing a Pot: Select a large pot with good drainage holes, like these planters. The size of the pot should accommodate the tree's root system as it grows. For the primo sized Cara Cara orange trees, a pot with a diameter of at least 10-14" inches is recommended.


2. Soil: Use a well-draining chunky potting mix specifically formulated for citrus trees, such as our Primo Potting Mix


Planting in the ground: For in-ground planting, plant the tree in a prepared area about 3x the diameter of the pot, and as deep as possible. That soil should be well-draining and loose, allowing for root growth. To plant your tree, dig a hole twice the size of the rootball. Plant at the same depth as the pot, keeping the crown of the roots just above the soil line. Water thoroughly after planting.

3. Location: Place the potted tree in a location that receives at least 8 hours of sunlight. Citrus trees, including Cara Cara orange trees, require plenty of sunlight to thrive. 


4. Watering: Water the tree regularly, keeping the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged. Use your finger to check the top inch of soil; if it feels dry, it's time to water. During the growing season (spring and summer), you may need to water more frequently. Reduce watering in the colder months.


5. Fertilization: Feed your Cara Cara orange tree with a balanced fertilizer such as Romeo Fertilizer or G&B Organic Citrus & Fruit Tree Fertilizer. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for application rates and timing. Fertilize during the active growing season (spring and summer) to support healthy growth and fruit production.


6. Pruning: Prune your tree in the early spring to maintain its shape and remove any dead or diseased branches. Regular pruning helps improve air circulation and sunlight penetration, which is essential for healthy growth. Click here to read more about pruning your citrus tree.


7. Pollination: Cara Cara orange trees are self-pollinating, which means they don't necessarily require another tree for pollination. However, having multiple citrus trees nearby can improve cross-pollination and potentially enhance fruit production.


8. Pests and Diseases: Keep an eye out for common citrus pests like aphids, scale insects, and spider mites. Treat any infestations promptly using appropriate insecticides or insecticidal soaps, such as Captain Jack's Insecticidal Super Soap. Additionally, monitor your tree for signs of diseases such as citrus canker or citrus greening, and take necessary steps to prevent or manage these issues.


9. Frost Protection: If you live in a colder climate, consider bringing the potted tree indoors or providing frost protection during the winter months. Citrus trees are sensitive to frost and cold temperatures. Click here to read more about bringing your citrus tree inside for the winter.


10. Repotting: As your Cara Cara orange tree grows, it may outgrow its current pot. Repot the tree into a larger container every 2-3 years or when you notice the roots becoming overcrowded or the soil mix has started to break down.

Remember that growing citrus trees in pots requires consistent care and attention, especially since container-grown plants are more reliant on their caregivers for water, nutrients, and suitable conditions. With proper care, you can enjoy the delicious fruits of your Cara Cara orange tree for years to come.


Cara Cara Sweet Semi-Dwarf Orange Tree

Cara Cara Sweet Semi-Dwarf Orange Tree


--OVERVIEW-- Our Best Selling Orange Tree! Early-ripening "Pink" Navel Orange with medium red colored flesh. The fruit has a rich sweetness that is balanced with a subtle tart flavor. Originated as a sport of Washington navel orange tree in Venezuela.… read more

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