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Messages - Doug

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Citrus General Discussion / Re: Disease resistance citrus?
« on: June 09, 2018, 10:46:19 AM »
No, they're not carpenter bees. These "black bees" (abejas negras) here are much smaller. I don't kill them because they are very good pollinators for all my other fruit trees, but they really can take over orange trees and eat all of the new growth leaves. As they say, they're a "mixed blessing". LOL

Citrus General Discussion / Disease resistance citrus?
« on: June 06, 2018, 06:21:19 PM »
I am growing a number of varieties of citrus here in this very wet climate, and I'm noticing that different types have different resistance to fungus. With the oranges the worst by far is Washington Navel. Valencia is next along with Malaguena. Pina and Temple seem to be somewhat better. Dancy and Clementine Tangerines are pretty good, but Orlando Tangelo seems to have problem. The grapefruits seem to take care of themselves.

The best citrus trees I have are the Ortantique. There is very little evidence of fungal problems, or, for that matter, is there a problem with the black bees which do a number on the orange trees.

I don't like to spray, even with soap and H2O2 (I'm a lazy retiree, gacias adios). I would be interested in others' experiences here.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Anybody here growing Mimosa hostilis?
« on: June 03, 2018, 07:45:58 AM »

I have successfully sprouted five seeds to about and inch tall. Just curious for opinions of the best way to handle them going forward.


Hahahahaha....Gnappi, when I read the post title the first thing that came to my mind was Stormy Daniels. Shame on me!


If you have some doubts like I do, perhaps there is another solution for you to investigate. I have found that cinnamon powder works as well as the questionable commercial hormone products. I've used it to get very good results on many types of plant cuttings. My farm is full of successful plantings using cinnamon. Also, while I haven't tried it, I have been told by others interested in organic growing that raw honey does a good job of promoting rooting as well. Worth a try!

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Costa Rica - fruit Nursery/orchards
« on: May 23, 2018, 04:53:14 PM »
I suppose it depends on which part of the country you're interested in....or will you have time to visit from the Caribbean to the Pacific? It's a little country with many eco-zones which lend themselves to difference types of fruit growing. For instance the avocado and mango farms are in the more dry Pacific side, but there are a number of small individual growers of many fruit varieties there. The Caribe side is wetter, and there are many large farms growing pineapples, bananas, rambutan and many other tropicals that like the humidity. On my side (the Caribbean) we have CATIE and EARTH which are well-known agricultural research universities which grow scores of different fruits. CATIE has many many acres of large mature tropical fruit trees to see, and there are knowledgeable people at the botanical gardens to show you around. A great choice for a "working farm" is Finca la Isla in Puerto Viejo on the East Coast. You probably know Peter Kring from this discussion board. He an expert and has been commercially growing scores of tropicals for 30 years. Check out some others on

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Last ID for today... lol
« on: May 22, 2018, 11:50:19 AM »
Looks like huevos de toro (or bull balls). I don't know for sure 'cause I haven't looked at a tree lately. If they are they are not edible.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Grumichama 2018
« on: May 12, 2018, 06:13:09 PM »
My grumachama fruits are really good...beautiful fruit, rich and long as you don't chew the peelings. Is it normal for the peelings to have a terpentine taste?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Rainbow Eucalyptus
« on: May 10, 2018, 04:55:17 PM »
I really love those trees! Gorgeous! When I moved here to Costa Rica 20 years ago they were everywhere. They were planted many years ago when the government electric company encouraged it because their straight trunks were great for telephone poles. Sadly, for me at least, the BC (biologically correct) crowd has declared war on them, and many have been cut down simply because they aren't indigenous. There's a big one left on the farm next to mine and the colors are remarkable. Good luck with your planting project!

Somebody here told me they planted an avocado seed and got fruit in five years. Is that a possibility? I have several cado trees I planted from seeds that are over 7 years old now. Very large trees now but no fruit yet. I've always understood it can take 10 to 15 years.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Durian Causes a Scare
« on: April 29, 2018, 11:44:12 AM »
At what point can you tell if a durian is actually rotten? Hahahaha


Your "better half" hates mangoes??? I believe in Florida that's grounds for divorce.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Potassium Oleate insecticide
« on: April 16, 2018, 03:30:33 PM »

I used to use "Safer Soap" insecticide in the states on apple trees primarily for aphids. I believe its based on potassium oleate. Works well and was approved for "organic" use. I didn't know it worked on ants and other hard body insects. Maybe is suffocated them?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Kandi fruit tree?
« on: April 13, 2018, 07:38:36 PM »

Thanks, John. That helped a lot. I knew it had to be a problem with either a Spanish name or simply spelling. Asam Kandis looks like it's what I have.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Planting Advice: Short - partial shade
« on: April 13, 2018, 04:39:38 PM »
I REALLY love miracle fruit! I grow pineapples and all types of citrus all of which are extra amazing to eat when I pop a miracle fruit first. I've even come to especially love grapefruits with MF. My miracle fruits grow in relatively heavy shade (a couple hours a day of sun at most), and the only care they get is coffee grounds an some water when it's dry. BTW, I have pineapples growing and producing in shade as well. Good luck!

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Kandi fruit tree?
« on: April 13, 2018, 04:29:11 PM »
Well, I was hoping somebody would recognize the name. Even a photo wouldn't help much since garcinias all seem to look pretty much alike.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Video tour of Peter's CR farm .....
« on: April 13, 2018, 12:49:38 PM »
Yesterday I found on a really interesting recent video tour of Peter Kring's remarkable farm in Puerto Viejo Costa Rica. It's titled "30 year old food forest". Peter of course is a frequent expert poster here on TRF. In case anyone's interested, the people doing the video also did several other tours of farms here.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Kandi fruit tree?
« on: April 13, 2018, 12:40:19 PM »

Again I've been gifted with a type of garcinia that I can't seem to find any info on in the internet. It's called "Kandi" and looks like a mangosteen seedling except the beautiful glossy leaves are much longer. Any info would be appreciated. (Don't ask for a're dealing with a tech-challenged person here.)

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Sex and the Salaks . . .
« on: March 25, 2018, 07:04:43 PM »
Thanks for your info, Peter. So, what's the best way to separate the suckers from the tree? And, is it better for the tree to remove the suckers?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Sex and the Salaks . . .
« on: March 24, 2018, 11:20:09 AM »
Maybe this question is for Peter in here in Costa Rica. I have three Salak Palm trees which are now four years old. One has flowered and is male. The other two haven't flowered as yet so I don't know if I have any females. My question is if there is any way to distinguish the plants by sex before they flower. The two which haven't flowered are somewhat smaller in size than the male but are the same age, planted at the same time in the same area. Thanks!

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Coconut deficiency and treatment
« on: March 21, 2018, 08:44:26 AM »
I didn't read through all the suggestions made so far so I don't know what advice has been given. However, I have a dozen very healthy coco palms here, the oldest is about eight years and fruiting. Following the local customs here, the only supplementation I have given them is a couple of handfuls each of crude sea salt maybe once a month spread around the trees. Made sense since the palms growing at the beaches seems very happy and fruitful to me. As far as frons are concerned, I always cut the dying ones which seems to stimulate the trees to relatively quickly grow more leaves. I'm no botanist but it sure works for me. BTW, I'm located at 1000 meters where it's much cooler and they're are few coco palms growing.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Manzana Taiwaneze...Taiwan Apple?
« on: March 09, 2018, 06:36:34 PM »
Have any of you heard of this variety of fruit? I can't find any info on it anywhere, and the person who gave me the trees doesn't know much about it as well. I wonder if it's a type of wax apple?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Homemade foliar spray
« on: February 23, 2018, 03:48:04 PM »
I don't have a foliar spray recipe for feeding, but I have a good formula I like for fighting fungus and bacteria. I don't use chemicals on my farm, but the disease pressure is very high here in our very rainy climate. I use a simple spray "recipe" which does help in fighting fungus on my plants and fruit trees. Mix one cup of white sugar and one cup of 3% hydrogen peroxide with one gallon of water. The fungus and bacteria don't like the peroxide at all, and as a bonus the sugar somehow makes leaves less appetizing to the bugs. I do add EM to the recipe, and it probably adds a punch to the formula as well. The only problem with spraying this on the trees...the rain washes it off. BTW, I credit this formula to Ed Bernhart, our longtime resident organic gardening expert here, who "wrote the book" on tropical organic growing in Costa Rica.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: largest avocado variety (ASK)
« on: February 18, 2018, 08:28:00 AM »
It's fun to know about these giant cados.....but what about the quality of the fruit? Taste, oil density, consistency?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: EM-1
« on: December 18, 2017, 04:59:59 PM »

Hi Peter! I never heard this info on EM before. I buy EM locally here. It's a very dark brownish liquid and comes in a used three liter plastic soda pop bottle....locally produced I'm sure. I have always assumed it's alive and active in that state. So, I need to add sugar to the stuff to activate it? Or do the microbes "wake up" when they get into the soil?

Also, on my citrus trees I use an "organic" powder mineral foliar spray which claims to contain EM. I usually mix some of the local EM in with the solution anyway. But, do you think the EM that the manufacturer claims is in the product could be possible viable in that powder state? Just curious.

BTW, I trust you survived the high winds and rain we've had lately. Strange weather! No problem at all here except sort of chilly, but I heard that the Caribe coast did get hit pretty hard. Hope you didn't lose plants...or worse.


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