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Messages - Doug

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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.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Large Earthquake Struck Costa Rica
« on: November 13, 2017, 10:16:45 AM »

No problems here that I know of. A little rock 'n roll on my side of the country.The quake was centered off the Pacific coast. Thanks for asking! When we have these things my first concern is if it's the big smoking volcano that dominates the the view from my front porch. LOL

There are several mature araza trees growing "wild" on the side of the road to my farm here. They are obviously "volunteers" because I doubt anyone would intentionally plant them in the rough conditions where they are growing. They produce wonderful fruit most of the year, and the quality of the bright and relatively blemish-free fruit and carefree nature of the trees is quite impressive. I have tried to grow them from seeds but without success to date. Maybe I'm just being too careful with them, judging by what I would say are really lousy conditions where the trees are thriving wild here. It's funny, but the trees do propagate themselves from seed, but the ground is so damn hard and rocky that I can't dig the seedlings up to transplant them without damaging them. They are definitely worth growing! Outstanding fragrance and flavor!

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Transplanting Miracle fruit?
« on: November 10, 2017, 05:04:28 PM »
I finally crudely dug it up one day and put it in a pot with from fresh soil and coffee grounds (fresh, not used) just to see what would happen. After a year or so now it's bright green and doubled in size, but no fruit yet.
Wouldn't the caffeine in the coffee inhibit the plant? I know there are nutrients in coffee, but there's also caffeine. I saw a comparison with coffee and tomato plants and the one in coffee ended up small. Just wondering if you have more insight into this.

I haven't noticed any problem with my miracle fruit bushes. They're all doing very well...mostly in the shade and we do get a lot of rain here.... and they all get a share of a bag of good Costa Rican coffee occasionally. But, I have to admit though that they do seem a little nervous after getting their coffee. LOL.

Coffee is too acid for tomatoes. I haven't put coffee on any other plants here, so I don't know how they would react.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Transplanting Miracle fruit?
« on: November 10, 2017, 01:37:38 PM »
I had a similar situation with a poor little miracle fruit bush that was planted in the ground that I had ignored for a few years. It was in bad shape! I finally crudely dug it up one day and put it in a pot with from fresh soil and coffee grounds (fresh, not used) just to see what would happen. After a year or so now it's bright green and doubled in size, but no fruit yet.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Florida Hass Avocado
« on: November 08, 2017, 07:53:32 PM »
How's the disease resistance on Day Avocado? And, how does it compare in taste and consistency with Hass?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Gardening by the moon-phases
« on: October 16, 2017, 07:08:50 PM »
No doubt about it...belief is very powerful! If you look closely you'll find it is the very basis of your personal reality. Having said that, you either have a "green thumb" or you don't! LOL

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Can anyone identify this?
« on: October 12, 2017, 05:59:42 PM »

Looks like chaya to me.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Anyone know what this is
« on: September 26, 2017, 09:37:39 AM »

Thanks Peter! I think you're right. I have a couple of these trees on my place here but I didn't know what they are called. I always called them "candelabra trees". Beautiful.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: ID Please
« on: September 24, 2017, 09:30:26 AM »

Have your trees fruited? I have been keeping it in the garage when temps were in the 40s. Grown from seed and is
now 2 1/2 years old. I'll keep it potted as long as I can.

Did you ever sell your farm?

Two of my sericicarpus (called castana here) have been fruiting for two years. They are six or seven years old. The other tree is too young. I had a bunch of the "breadnuts" yesterday, boiled and salted. Good stuff! But, I planted the trees primarily to just look at.

Have you seen mature castana planted outside up there in your area? If so, I bet the damn hurricane did a number on their big beautiful leaves.

Yep, sold the farm quickly to some great folks! But, there's plenty other great farm property left here for you and your wife when you decide to escape from hurricane alley. LOL

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: ID Please
« on: September 23, 2017, 07:00:53 PM »
I'm looking out my window at both mature trees side by side. Can't tell the difference. Maybe the only way is to wait for the fruit. BTW, I'm surprised that breadfruit can grow in the St. Pete area. I thought maybe it would be too cold in the winter. It's my favorite beautiful! My daughter lives there and I would love to help her plant one.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Tangelo tree pollination
« on: September 21, 2017, 11:04:04 AM »
If you really really want your tree to fruit, here's an idea that works. I doubt up there you have many mature citrus trees from which to choose as pollinators, but if you can find a suitable pollinator tree you can make a "bouquet" of flowers from the tree and place it in your tree. You'll get fruit. I did that with several types of fruit trees when I lived in NC, and it worked very well every year.

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