How to Grow a Guava Tree

The guava tree (Psidium guajava) is a shrub or a small tree of the myrtle family. The guava can grow up to 30 feet high. It is cultivated for its delicious, lemon-size fruit, which are produced in abundance in the summer in subtropical and temperate regions of the world. The fruit are high in vitamins A and C. The guava tree is extensively cultivated across the world and is also used as a shade tree.

Instructions

1.Plant your guava in a sunny, well-drained spot in your garden. Do not use plants you have grown from seed, because these may not come to fruition. Use a seedling or rootstock cutting from a nursery to make sure your guava tree will fruit. Guavas are not fussy about soil and will thrive in heavy clay or light sandy soils. You do not need to extensively prepare the ground before planting your guava tree, but some organic compost mixed into the soil will be beneficial.

2.Water your guava at least once a week. The trees are very resistant to drought but will not fruit abundantly unless they are watered generously. After it has become established and started to grow, fertilize every three months with an all-purpose fertilizer. Your guava tree will grow vigorously in almost all conditions, provided it is not exposed to cold other than occasional light frosts. Temperatures below 29 degrees Fahrenheit will seriously damage or kill guava trees.

3.Prune the main shoot of your guava tree when it reaches a height of 4 or 5 feet. This makes the tree produce lateral branches, which are the ones that will bear the fruit. If you want your guava tree to grow taller and provide shade, wait until it is the desired height before pruning the main shoot. Remove all suckers that emerge from the ground or low on the trunk to encourage strong growth of the main lateral branches. Lateral branches can be supported with canes or wire if they sag under the weight of fruit. After fruiting is over, the tree can be pruned back to maintain its shape and height. The next fruit crop is produced on new growth.

4.Monitor your guava tree for signs of fungal disease such as brown spots on the leaves and leaf drop. Guava leaves are susceptible to fungal attack by Anthracnose (Colletotrichum gloeosporioide) and other fungi. If your guava tree is attacked by fungus, treat the foliage with an antifungal spray containing copper. Guava fruit can be damaged and destroyed by the maggots of the Caribbean fruit fly (Anastrepha suspensa). If your guava tree fruit are susceptible, cover them with paper bags before they begin to ripen to keep the flies from laying their eggs.

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