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Messages - baccarat0809

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Here's my update on apres freeze garden.

Lost:  9 seedling mango (4x atulfo, 5x store boughts), 1 seedling duncan grapefruit, 6x papaya, numerous mid-size bananas and about 10lbs of sweat for moving all my potted plants indoors and then out again.

Key Lime - lost 95% of its leaves and had a bunch of branch die back.  I pruned the deadwood and it started flushing new growth about 10 days ago.  Was in ground for about 1.5 years and bought at HD.

Meyer Lemon - lost all its leaves but 1 and also had a bunch of branch die back.  Deadwood pruned back but no flush yet.  Was in the ground for about 1.5 years and bought at HD.

Duncan grapefruit seedling.  This little guy was just about 1 year old when the freeze hit and had been in the ground about 7 months.  It was 18 inches before the freeze and now its down to about 4.5 or 5 inches.  After trimming the deadwood off the top 10 days ago it has also started flushing nicely.

Haas seedling avocado.  This one's a bit interesting.  I planted 3 avocado seeds into the same hole last august but only 1 of them sprouted.  It got to about 12 inches tall before the freeze and ended up freezing all the way to the stems.  It bounced back nicely, but here's the surprise.  One of the other pits I put in the ground that never sprouted last year sprouted now !!  It's the one on the left.  Wasn't expecting that.

Florida prince peach.  Just starting to push out some growth.  Should be no issues with this one.

Bananas were hammered.  I've kept cutting back all the dead/decaying tissue and have a stump or two pushing out growth.  Still holding off hope for some nanners this year but not sure.  Great new growth on the bottom of them all though.

Pineapple patch was where I put the most effort into saving as it is close to our house and has a southern face so it warms up earlier in the day.  I put paint drop cloth over the pineappples and ran an electric heater about 7 nights this year.  They seem to be fine except that one that is starting to yellow up a bit.  All pineapples are dole twist-tops from the store that I just stuck into the ground and they rooted.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Jackfruit at whole foods
« on: February 19, 2018, 10:23:32 PM »
I purchased a soursop about a month ago from whole foods that also didn't ripen, but I bought it way too green.  I also got it to have starter seeds as well but did want to try.  I ended up with a bunch of seeds and only got 1 of them to sprout.

This one was much better than the first one I got and was halfway decent, but truly I've never had a great one so I can't say.  That said, I'm also planning on trying to germinate these seeds as well.  I need to look into how to germinate them (GA maybe?) as the take rate was terrible with that last drop.

The yellow DF were once again fantastic.

Thanks 4 the feedback folks.  I got a nice soursop and 2 vsry sweer yellow dragon fruit instead.

The last soursop I bought from Whole Foods a few weeks back never ripened. The sign said it was grown in the US and I know of some small commercial operations in the Redlands. I wonder if that is where it came from. I mainly bought it for rootstock seeds but at $10/lb I was hoping to at least taste a crappy quality fruit.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Jackfruit at whole foods
« on: February 17, 2018, 10:45:11 PM »
Thanks 4 the feedback folks.  I got a nice soursop and 2 vsry sweer yellow dragon fruit instead.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Jackfruit at whole foods
« on: February 17, 2018, 05:19:18 PM »
So while hitting up our local whole foods found this baby.  31.5lbs or there abouts.

Ive never tried jackfruit so this would be an expensive mistake.

Is the price at 2.49lb good and is this one worth getting or should i take a pass.



Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Golden or Yellow Dragon Fruit?
« on: February 16, 2018, 03:26:06 PM »
None of the 3 stems that i had rooted as they all started to rot.

The seeds have sprouted fantastically and are outgrowing the red df seeds that I started a month earlier.

Anyone think it possible that piece off dragonfruit will grow

anyone able to root it? I got a smaller stem last week and tried to root it. Will check in a few weeks...

So, after pricing out 1 gallon, 2 gallon and 5 gallon pots at Home Depot, there's no way I'm going to buy my pots there as the price is ridiculous. 

What's the best deal you've found on getting these, and should I be looking more to purchase fabric ones.  Mainly for being used for starting Mango and Avocados.

Also, while I"m thinking about it, what's everybody thoughts on the best place to get 30/40/50 gallon pots as well.  A few of the mango's that I started 2 years ago are due to be transplanted from the 10 gallon ones their in now.


While I was able to bring my potted ones in doors, all the seedlings that I had planted died from the multiple freezes.  Being small still, I mounded the base of the mangos with mulch and put blankets and towels over them and I hoped the ground radiation was going to be enough to keep them safe, but nope.  Only 1 survived the first freeze but that one went to plant heaven the night we hit 25.

The next door neighbor with the home depot special put coverings over the tree and a bucket of water alongside the tree.  The tree handled the 30 degree night ok (the first 2 days), but the second freeze we had resulted in the outer leaves being completely fried and about 85% of the inner leaves were in bad shape.

I haven't seen the NDM to see how that one is going.

All my mangos in pots were brought inside for the freezes but were left outside on the mid 30 degree nights and are doing well.  They're back outside now and 2 of them have had recent flushes and one of the trees has pannicles forming - that tree is certainly to young to bear but I'm going to cut any fruit off if any does happen to take.

All my other potted trees were brought in during the freeze nights but did amazingly well during the mid 30's temps we had.  My longans, cherimoyas and atemoya seedlings are doing well and the longans are flushing now with a new growth spurt after that cold.  Also surprised a bit by some of my avocado seedlings, as I had started 14 seeds (2x florida, 12x hass) in the beginning of December and left those out in the cold (again, brought in for the freeze nights but not the mid 30's) and 8 of those have pushed growth out this last week and it looks like another 3 or so are ready any day to send up their first shoot.  The cold may have slowed down their germination but most look to have taken.  I know avocados are generally easy to grow but I'm hoping that having them sprout while enduring mid 30's well help develop a tree that can better stand these "artic" cold blasts.

I probably won't put any more seedling mangos in the ground here since I'll only be in this house for another year, but it was a good lesson to learn cheaply since they were just seedlings.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Golden or Yellow Dragon Fruit?
« on: January 25, 2018, 02:54:05 PM »
Thanks Ric

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Golden or Yellow Dragon Fruit?
« on: January 25, 2018, 12:30:03 PM »
So I purchased a few more of these today and I bought the ones with the pieces of the DF stem on them still.

Is there anything special I should do to them to make sure they take?
- Rooting hormone?
- Making a newer cut at the base to encourage root growth?
- Should I use a "humidifier" - ie, since I'm using red solo cups do I put a plastic bag over the cups?


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Golden or Yellow Dragon Fruit?
« on: January 22, 2018, 04:01:21 PM »
Picked up one last week at the whole foods in Altamonte Springs.

Was very, very good.  Certainly the best DF I've ever tasted.  I harvested about 30 seeds, washed and dried them off and planted them earlier today in a cactus mix.  I started a bunch of red DF seeds about 2 months ago and many of those have sprouted - but they're so, so tiny.  Hope these yellow ones sprout out as they're much tastier than the reds I've had.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Cleanup after the freeze in Orlando area
« on: January 09, 2018, 05:51:50 PM »
Ok, so I got hammered like most of us, and the blankets and protection I tried using didn't work for the tropicals I had in the ground.

No big loss since most of my plants were from seed and experimental at best, but now what do I do with my bananas, papayas and seedling mangos?

One of my bananas was about 5ft tall, the rest were about 3ft tall.  Do I remove the dead leaves, chop down the stalk or just let it be to provide protection, though it would be limited, to any pups that start coming out, or will the 5ft plant start to push new growth out?

As for the papaya, do I strip off the dead leaves and keep the main stalk in hopes of it coming back?  I had about 8 papayas that were about 2 feet tall and just starting to flower.

The mangos that I lost were all about 1.5 years old and less than 2ft tall (mainly altaufo).  They were small but bushy and leafy.  Do I just leave them in the grounds in hope they'll pop back up or just dig em out.

Lastly I had 3 seedling grapefruit.  1 looks to be completely fried but the other 2 only lost the new growth flush.  I assume I trim that back and those should bounce back, or is there something else.

One more - since its been so dry out lately, should I water now that we're back into the '70s or try to keep them in a bit of a hibernated state in fear of another frost/freeze happening.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Chilly Florida AM
« on: January 04, 2018, 02:47:19 PM »
Was at 32 for 8 hours in Lake Mary .....with final low of 30 for a few hours....really weird as temp hit 32 around midnight and stayed there for hours on end until it hit 30 for a few hours before sunrise....

I live in one city over from ya in Longwood, and WeatherUnderground registered us at 27 this 7AM.  I moved my potted plants indoors a few days ago but lost my bananas, mangos and papayas.  My citrus seemed to fare ok as they are small and close to the ground and I covered them up, and my pineapples, which are right next to my house and i ran an electric heater over the patch last night and covered them seemed ok - temp around the heater was at 41 this am so hopefully i saved them, but will be back at it tonight trying to keep them warm.

My Florida Prince Peach took an absolute beating last night too and dropped all of its leaves - hopefully that will come back

What eats your food becomes your food.

From the '80s song "I'm on a Mexican Radio" by Wall of Voodoo.

"eating barb-b-que iquana"

No reason to relocate them to the bottom of your lake.  Relocate them to your grill.

Cats eye Longan are from Fancy Fruit store in Central Florida - no idea.

They were very tasty though and all of the seeds sprouted rather quickly and have done very well.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Tropical Seedlings and the upcoming cold wave
« on: December 07, 2017, 11:01:40 AM »
So, I started the following seedlings this fall:

6x Cats Eye Longan
4x Loquats
3x Rambutan
2x Atemoya
3x Cherimoya
2x Hass Avocado

Central Florida is expecting our first true cold wave this weekend and it's expected to hit a low of 37.

All are in containers except for one of the avocado's, so it'll be easy for me to bring them inside, but I'm wondering if I should leave any of them outside to help "harden them off", as I expect I'll be putting most of them in the ground around April of next year.



Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / Re: South Florida Compost
« on: November 27, 2017, 02:43:49 PM »

These guys match arborists with gardeners and they drop off chips for free.

I posted some pics of my first drop in one of the threads on the main page.

Pretty awesome service.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Procuring mulch from storm vegetative debris
« on: September 22, 2017, 06:18:03 PM »
I live in Longwood (east Orlando) and the day after I signed up for chipdrop I got a call but was out working on the garden and missed it.

Took another 2 weeks for the next call to come in and to say I was happy with the amount / quality is an understatement.  I ended up getting a mix of palm, oak and eucalyptus as the load smelled like Mentol and while it took a while to distribute, I got about 1/2 of the mulching done that I wanted and got all of my trees mulched in the backyard.  I only found 2 larger branches in the load I got, though some of the palm leaves weren't chipped up, so i put those down first and put the chips on top of them to make the rows look better.  I have a large hill on the back of my property that cutting the grass on just sucks because of the steepness of the hill and the angle its on, so the next load will allow me to finish mulching the rest of the hill so no more worries about cutting grass back there anymore.  I've started to add fruit trees on the hill that I've started from seed and have a 6x mango seedlings, 4x grapefruit seedlings and 6x papaya seedlings and those chips will certainly help the quality of the dirt as I'm on pure builders sand with nothing organic to it at all.  Once the next load of chips are down, a neighbor offered a bunch of banana pups and I have 2x loquat and 4x longan seedlings that I can plant as well to increase the mini orchard down there.

Since they're all seedlings doesn't matter much if they don't make it as I was happy just eating the original fruit.  I'll worry about grafting name-brand stock onto the seedlings if we decide to purchase the house instead of continuing on our long term lease, if not, at least I get a good learning experience about what works/doesn't around here.  Glad to have a landlord that encouraged me to add the trees to the lot.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Procuring mulch from storm vegetative debris
« on: September 19, 2017, 07:28:23 PM »
Guys - there's a website called ChipDrop

They work with arborists who need a place to dump their chips at instead of the city dump.

I picked up this load on 08/30 for FREE. 

Its an amazing service and something I will 100% use again - just waiting for it to get a bit cooler as moving that much mulch, even with my 3 boys helping, took a ton of time and sweat.

Cocktails anyone?

Fresh mango margarita.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / How much sun for Longan seedlings
« on: September 01, 2017, 06:26:50 PM »
So, the first of my longan seedlings have sprouted and are up around 3 inches out of the soil.

I sprouted them on my patio / bird cage area but want to figure out if i need to leave them there and grow them out or if they should be put in the sun right away.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: mango seedling
« on: August 17, 2017, 07:13:23 PM »
Groetjes van zonnige Florida.

Having lived in Dendermonde and Leuven in Belgium for a few years, i agree, it will be tough with your climate, but we've got members here from Russia who are growing tropical plants.  If they can do it, so can you.

Do you have a greenhouse that you can use for the winter?  Do you have plans for supplemental light?

Groetjes terug van uit het natte Nederland :-)

not at the moment i was thinking of keeping it in a big pot for the rest of the year sitting on a warm spot in the house. till its a bit more mature (its only 1 1/2 months old)

you have any tips on what kind of temperatures i should stay at for this little guy?

Temps - keep it indoors and you'll be fine as long as it gets enough light.  Don't over-water the plant either as the roots will rot out on you.

As for growth, over the next year or so it may only double in size or it could really take off - depends on the genetics.  I've got 2 mango's that I started last June that are about 20 inches high and have 4 sets of leaves, 2 of them are about 24 inches high with about 6 sets of leaves and my star performer is about 36 inches high now and has all kinds of growth and is taking off.

All depends on the genetic lottery.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: mango seedling
« on: August 17, 2017, 04:21:01 PM »
Groetjes van zonnige Florida.

Having lived in Dendermonde and Leuven in Belgium for a few years, i agree, it will be tough with your climate, but we've got members here from Russia who are growing tropical plants.  If they can do it, so can you.

Do you have a greenhouse that you can use for the winter?  Do you have plans for supplemental light?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Best way to germinate Atemoya seeds?
« on: August 11, 2017, 07:19:11 PM »
So our local fruit market had some Atemoyas for sale a few days ago and I purchased one.

Delicious and very, very custard like.

I've ended up with about 10 seeds and want to germinate them.

What's the best way?  Damp paper towel, directly into soil, or something else.

Thanks folks.

Nice looking place  Too bad I've got 2 years on my lease here still - that would be one heck of a great start for a tropical fruit fan.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: beyond muggy
« on: July 28, 2017, 02:41:16 PM »
As a Central Florida transplant from Buffalo, I'll take this much more so than shoveling 18 feet of snow.

I lost 4lbs early this am when I mowed the grass - takes me about 2 hours and I weighed myself before and after, and that was from 9am-11:15am.  I can't image how much I would have lost had I cut the grass in the middle of the afternoon.  Now I just gotta drink that much in water today or I'll have a terrible headache tomorrow.

Getting some amazing flushes from my seedling Mango's from the heat and humidity, that's for sure.

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