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Topics - Mike T

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Tropical Fruit Discussion / A taste of Myrianthus arboreus
« on: January 12, 2018, 06:51:05 AM »

I was asked to identify a giant yellow mulberry from a piece of the fruit this afternoon. The skin is like sandpaper and the sections are like a pandanus.

It is fibrous and there is not a lot of flesh.It has a pleasant enough acid/sweet taste that makes your lips tingle like some acid pineapples do.It is a familiar fruity taste with a hint of cinnamon .

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Ilamas on my trees and seeds sprouting
« on: January 12, 2018, 04:18:20 AM »

The last one is a cut red genova from last year.I am please to have fruit on all 4 trees and I have 3 varieties.

Thanks Raul the red and pink ilama seeds are sprouting in less than 3 weeks.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / What the heck is this Artocarpus like fruit?
« on: January 12, 2018, 04:07:27 AM »

I was brought this aromatic 21.4kg fruit to identify today. It looks like a big brain with marang like skin tubicles .

It smells and looks like an artocarpus inside with rag but the bulbs of flesh are missing.

The seeds are small and I am reaching down deep and coming up empty. I don't know what it is.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Taiwan Gold - A big time mango
« on: January 12, 2018, 03:56:56 AM »

A friend brought me some Taiwan gold mangoes and they sure are big and they taste good as well. I clipped the seed in the cut one.
It seems to be a very late variety and unlike most varieties thrives in high rainfall places getting over 4000mm/yr.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / New Atemoya Variety Budsport SE Queensland
« on: January 04, 2018, 09:56:39 PM »
I was not aware of this atemoya until reading this story. I am not sure just how good it is. South East Queensland seems to be an engine room for atemoya development and consumption.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Waiting for Broadleaf Papaya to ripen.
« on: December 23, 2017, 03:11:38 AM »

I have been waiting for my broadleaf papaya fruit to ripen for months so I can pass on seeds to those people who requested them.It is just starting to show some yellow.One Texan in particular has been waiting patiently. This is a pure bisex specimen with red veins in the leaves, large sweet red fleshed fruit and very hark purple petioles.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Dont be a Stupid Plucker
« on: December 02, 2017, 09:57:16 PM »
I often swing a bit on the ladder and hang on thin branches to pick fruit. I have nearly come to grief a few times. A plucker I have is not so good and I have worn mangoes and sapodillas a few times. Today I decided to pluck a pomelo from tree which was hanging about 8 feet from the ground. Here is the tree and offending fruit - well one of them at least when they were smaller.

I used to play basketball and fancy my leaping ability so decided to jump up and get it. I went base over apex with the 11 lb fruit landing on my head and shoulder and one of two more fruit jarred off landing on me as well. Thankfully they are spongy and I wasn't hurt. Mind you if a durian, coconut or jackfruit landed on you, you could be compromised. I will be a little more careful in future.
I am sure we all have stories of picking and dropping fruit.


The plant in the pot has a flower after being a seed a little over a year ago. I found the seeds germinated within a few weeks and the plants grow vigorously whether in the pot of the ground. They stay short and have multiple branches. The ones I planted in the yard thrive on neglect and don't need much water.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Eugenia pyriformis x lutescens first tasting
« on: November 17, 2017, 03:40:30 PM »
I was told that this is the finest Eugenia fruit for eating out of hand and 2 of my 3 small trees flowered and fruited.

Eugenia pitanga I found no better than E.uniflora.A little bland and a little resinous.

The new jabs for me escarlettte and red hybrid are great and have more than met expectations.

I have a E.lutescens and tries the solitary fruit and it was great and almost apricot like.The verdict on E.pyriformis x lutescens is that the fruit do not live up to expectations and are more sour than sweet , they have a little bit of a resinous aftertaste and the flavour is not really rich and fruity.Not as good as pitangatuba.Perhaps being a hybrid mine has thrown too much to pyriformis and they are not all like this.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Mystery Garcinia from southern Brazil
« on: November 13, 2017, 08:06:14 AM »
Between 2 and 4 years ago I received many Brazilian Garcinias which I spread around and surprisingly some are starting to fruit already.The label of this one was transposed incorrectly and its identity is unknown.It is larger than achachairu and sweeter and from what I am told it is better quality.Can anyone positively identify it?

Another season passes and once again I am eating a few starapples. Just as a reminder the DPI Gold and Alva are known as gold or pink  starapples which are much rarer thgan the purples and greens as well as being larger and sweeter. Sometimes they reach 1kg.

The juicy pearls have a single seed are apparently the same species and perhaps subspecies as what Oscar has in Hawaii and are lovely to eat. They appear to be Chrysophyllum argenteum subsp. auratum.

Pitangatubas are producing well at the moment and my orange E.uniflora (not standard) are also producing. The jaboticabas are a mix of escarlette  and red dwarf hybrid (thanks Oscar).

Now that I have your attention the real reason for this thread is to find out the identity of the fruit below.It was labelled as Campomanesia pubescens but this doesn't seem right.I gave it to my brother and it is a small plant. My Cherries of rio grande got chopped down in my yard as they were too big and unproductive.I figure my climate is too warm for them to bear. My Eugenia cerejas suffered a similar fate in my yard as they grew too big and crowded out other plants without fruiting. It is neither of these.

In the mid 1990s the Kamerunga tropical fruit research and quarantine station in Cairns was suddenly closed after about 100 years of operation. Changes in government funding and relinquishment of the property to the local council happened suddenly.The main task for decades had been to collect and evaluate tropical fruits from around the world with plantings on the property that were scrutinised for suitability for local and wider commercial production. Thousands of cultivars and varieties from a vast number of species were planted with the best distributed and then all were systematically cleared for the next trial.
I was stationed in the offices several weeks after researchers left but before the Council acquired it as I worked for a State government department and the office space was not to be wasted even temporarily. Such was the haste of the departure that calendars were still up, cutlery was still in the kitchen and reports and evaluations were still on desks and interestingly the quarantine nursery was still full of plants needing a water. A pomological post apocalyptic scene. Well maybe not.
I tried to fix the automatic water system during lunchtime and after work to the lychee, durian, pulasan. rambutan and several other trial areas foregoing the coffee, cocoa and other plantings. It worked for a while until my group left and the council cleared all the trees to stop the constant flow of people raiding the trees and growers pleading for cuttings.
The triumph of Kamerunga is that vast numbers of fruit varieties were fanned out and although variety names and other information has been lost gems are still emerging from here and there in the district and further afield that originally came via Kamerunga.

A good friend of mine is going to a few destinations in SE Asia starting on June 7.He will be in the following locations and eager to collect seeds:

7 & 8 June Singapore
9 & 10 June Johor
11 June Kuala Lumpur
12 June Johor
13 & 14 June Taipei
Unknown Taiwan
Return 21 June

If anyone can advise on good markets for fruit and give any other relevant tips it would be most appreciated.

Sending things out of Australia is also getting hard. Biosecurity and how plant products coming into the country keeps being subject to higher standards and scrutiny. Even when compliant the standard procedure seems to be destroy imported seeds and ask questions later.
National treasures can be lost with such an unrepentant, uncompromising approach that does not always consider values and genuine risks. Some of the key biosecurity areas such as mass imports through ports and ballast water get nowhere near as much attention as the mail.
Fortunately parcels are still getting through to me much of the time. I wonder how many other countries are so strict?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / So how good is Tekam/J33 Jackfruit?
« on: April 14, 2017, 03:35:24 AM »

My seedling from a Malaysian monoculture of this type has got its first fruit.It is egg shaped and of medium size and the skin has browned.I have tried most of the named Australian varieties and the best thai, Malaysian and a few Vietnamese types and have an idea of what are the best types.The worst named type I have ever tried is Galaxy which only good for the lovers of latex and sloppy flesh.The best I have tried include a couple of thai thick fleshed yellows, NS1 and J31 from Malaysia are alright and 3 or 4 Australian ones are very good.Amber is still the best I have eaten.
Tekam or J33 comes with some hype and I'm told it is the finest in SE Asia so I'm keen to road test my seedling's fruit. 

What a shame something has changed and I cant seem to add images any more.I will try on another computer later and see how that goes.Anyway an ilama seedling I passed on to a friend less than 3 years ago is fruiting well now and fruit are red fleshed and luscious.I think it is a red genova but there are 2 other options from the seeds I obtained.
I am wondering if anyone has experience with grafting ilamas and what rootstocks to use.I cant get cherimoya and it is unsuitable for me climate as well.Grafts on to sugar apple failed after initially looking ok.I am wondering if A.reticulata is the best rootstock option for grafting ilama?

Citrus General Discussion / So what is a Tangerine?
« on: March 25, 2017, 09:24:59 PM »
I have heard references to the fruit tangerine forever and just thought it to be what americans call mandarins from Morocco. As a colour I know it is a very bright orange but as a fruit I suspect it is meant to be seedless, bright and loose skinned mandarins. I know the term is increasingly used in Australia for specific mandarins and higher prices are charged. The term papaya is slowly replacing the old word paw paw for that fruit and seems to have settled on a name for red fleshed paw paw as opposed to yellow fleshed which are held in lower regard.
Can anyone clarify if a tangerine must come from morocco, is only used for some mandarins, is more about form than variety and what makes a fruit a tangerine in the US rather than a mandarin? There seems to be some confusion as how it is applied outside America?

I have two cherries of rio grande around 5 years old and kept down to around 7 feet tall that have never flowered or fruited. They wilt whenever the UV rating hits 13 or higher and I suspect they need chill and a cooler climate to fruit. I am considering chopping them down if they are slower bearers from seed than durian or mangosteen and the space could be better utilised. Can anyone advise on whether chilling is needed and if they go poorly in more tropical areas?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Hot time down under
« on: February 11, 2017, 04:17:29 AM »
This summer seems to be even hotter than the last and heat records keep getting broken throughout Australia. The last week or so has been.A couple of years ago the official mapping legends added the extra category on maps to show areas over 50c (122f) but it seems to have dropped off current maps. The northern humid summers are punishing as usual but humidity contains max temps but inland and southerly places seem to be experiencing worse and more frequent heatwaves.
Yesterdays temps for the country showed nowhere was cool.
There is news from all over about the heat.It would be lovely to be enjoying some northern hemisphere winter weather right now.


I have noticed in the last 10 to 15 years that major nurseries in Australia seem to be offering fewer varieties of citrus and fruit trees generally that in the past. Two of the bigger nurseries Fitzroy and Daleys websites are attached and can be dug into depending on specific fruit types ypu are interested in. There also seems to be a reliance on getting Californian citrus varieties.It may be of interest to peruse and see how many familiar citrus types there are for americans so far away.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / What's in a name and seasons greeting?
« on: December 26, 2016, 04:41:20 PM »
I hope all my chums out there who love fruit and grow special varieties have had a great xmas and the year 2017 turns out to be the fruitful ever.
I find it interesting how much effort people use up on disagreeing about the names of fruit like what is a custard apple, papaya vs paw paw, what is a granadilla and so many more.
 Seeing the name cotton candy reminded me of a comment I heard when someone buying some corrected the vendor and said it is fairy floss and to use the right name. It has always been fairy floss here. I checked and it was invented by a dentist in 1897 and he introduced it to the world in 1904 as fairy floss. Another dentist invented the sugar spinning machine in 1921 and patented the name cotton candy. Both names are correct and the old name kinda froze in Australia. It is very similar to fruit names.
 Papaya apparently had many old Caribbean names actually referring to bananas that were similar of which papaya and paw paw were the main ones.The word papaw or paw paw is still favoured by the oxford dictionary and dates back to a least 1598.The word papaya was also in common use at the time,The way in panned out is more English territories in Africa and in Australia stuck with paw paw and the Americas went back and forward and settled on papaya.In Australia there is a move to call the red fleshed papaya and yellow fleshed paw paw just to add to confusion.
The name granadilla is used exclusively for fruit of Passiflora quadrangularis in my part of the world and has been for 100 years or so with all others in the genus referred to as passionfruit with a variety or species name.Custard apples are atemoya  and sugar apples with A.reticulata being bullocks heart.It is so old and ingrained it cant change.
So long as we know what we are talking about and accept a name for he purposes of discussion it is all good.   

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Crazy talk about mangosteens
« on: October 10, 2016, 08:00:39 PM »

Lay some skin on me bro.Spit out the flesh and eat the skin I say.


A couple of fruit growers are having trouble identifying a species that looks like a Syzigium and May Apple at that but has small very sweet berries.The common remark is that they are better than jaboticabas but much like them.I couldn't find out fruit texture,whether there us a single seed inside or anything else meaningful.I don't know what it is and the seedlings only are in the pics above.Any ideas? It is held in high regard.


I gave a friend a seedling from my South American collection of sprouting plants 2 years ago and I would have received the seeds 2.5 to 3 years ago.My friend lost the identity label and is keen to know what this tree is now that it has flower buds.I cannot identify it from the picture he sent.Can anyone help?

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