Pomelo Care: Growing Pummelo Trees

Pomelo Care

Pomelo Tree Overview

Citrus maxima, commonly known as pomelo or pummelo, can be referred to by either name or even by its colloquial nickname, “Shaddock.” What, then, is a pomelo or pummelo? Let’s learn how to cultivate a pummelo tree.


Pomelo fruit, a related citrus fruit, is the largest in the world, measuring 4-12 inches in diameter. Its sweet/tart inside is coated in a detachable, easily greenish-yellow or pale yellow peel. The fruit’s thick skin allows it to keep well for extended periods, and the fruit is not reflected in peel blemishes. Its fruit is easily detachable and maintains its health.

Pomelo Tree Origins

Pomelo trees, native to the Far East, grow wild in the Friendly Islands and Fiji. In China, they are considered lucky and store fruit for the New Year. In the late 17th century, explorers brought pomelo specimens to the New World, and farmers began cultivating them in Barbados in 1696.


Pomelos are excellent shade trees because of their dense leaf canopy and make ideal screens or espaliers. The pummelo tree itself has evergreen foliage and a compact, low canopy that is shaped like an umbrella or somewhat spherical. The beautiful, scented, white spring flowers contrast with the ovate, glossy, medium-green leaves. The blooms’ fragrance is so strong that some fragrances contain their essence. Depending on the climate, the ensuing fruit is borne off the tree in the winter, spring, or summer.

Pomelo Tree Care

You can grow pomelo trees from seed or graft them onto existing citrus rootstock. They thrive in full sunlight, particularly in hot and humid conditions. Maintenance involves keeping the soil consistently moist, whether it is sandy, clayey, or loamy, with a pH ranging from acidic to alkaline. Pomelo trees can tolerate different soil types, but regular watering and good drainage are crucial. To control growth, ensure the area around them is clear of weeds, grass, and debris.


To prevent disease and fungus, keep your pomelo’s space free of debris and apply citrus fertilizer according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Pomelo trees can grow up to 25 feet and live 50-150 years. They are resistant to verticillium but vulnerable to various illnesses and pests, including aphids, mealybugs, scale, spider mites, thrips, whiteflies, brown rot, chlorosis, crown rot, oak root rot, Phytophthora, root rot, and sooty mold.

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