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Messages - SoCal2warm

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Citrus General Discussion / Re: Please ID these tangerine and grapefruit
« on: December 12, 2018, 03:29:33 PM »
Both Satsuma and Oroblanco are really good varieties (two of my favorites), so I don't think you will be disappointed.

I tasted Shasta and Tahoe. I was enthusiastic about Shasta but didn't think Tahoe was that special.

I did get the opportunity to taste one Nova fruit. Wasn't enthusiastic about it, tasted like a cross between Dancy and Honey mandarin, if you like those. (Maybe Nova had a little more acidity and flavor like Clementine, but I guess I just wasn't all that enthusiastic about the direction its flavor was in)

However, personal preference could have a lot to do with this. I prefer the more sour aromatic varieties rather than the sweeter ones with tropical flavors.

Shasta has pretty big sized fruits, is virtually seedless, maybe has some of the aromatic level as a Satsuma, but the fruits are more tangy, almost more in the direction of an orange but more intensity of flavor.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Please ID these tangerine and grapefruit
« on: December 12, 2018, 03:00:08 PM »
"Tangerine" probably Satsuma mandarin.
Grapefruit very likely to be Melogold or Oroblanco (more likely Oroblanco) because of the large size.

If the Satsuma mandarin tree is not that old, you may have to wait a few more years for the tree to improve in flavor.
 It can also help to stop watering the tree right around the time that the growing fruits are sizing up.
Last year you may have waited too long to begin picking the fruits. Sometimes the fruits will be ready to eat before the skin on the outside has finished turning all the way orange. If you fertilized the tree around the same time it was developing fruit, that could have affected development of the fruit and adversely impacted flavor. Fertilizer will divert too much tree growth away from fruit development.

Fresh seeds available, several different varieties, only available for the next 5 days
$5.50 for >5 seeds, probably more

White grapefruit (probably Duncan or Marsh) - gold standard of grapefruit flavor
Ugli Fruit
Satsuma mandarin (only 3 seeds)
Yuzu (only 3 seeds)
Kaffir lime (not a true a lime, cold hardier than regular limes, down to zone 9)

For best chances of germination and fastest germination time, begin sprouting as soon as you receive them
You are most likely to have 100% germination rate with these (although the Yuzu has been in the refrigerator for over 3 weeks now, which might affect chances of germination).

Also willing to trade, if you have any super cold hardy variety seeds (or will have them in the future)

Cold Hardy Citrus / Re: a few pictures from the Pacific Northwest
« on: December 06, 2018, 03:27:25 PM »
Frost on the plastic container cover over the keraji

Arctic Frost, you can seen frost on it

Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / Re: LED grow light for sale
« on: December 01, 2018, 10:46:05 PM »
Hate to bash your sales ad but those things are crap. They use really small LEDs that have lower efficiency than the 1w or 3w LED emitters. You'd probably be better off just using an ordinary white LED bulb.

I can't speak for the particular version you got, but I got one of the panels slightly better than yours that has 1w LED emitters (a little bit bigger) and after being left on for over six months most of the emitters stopped working. For some reason the blue ones burn out before the red ones. That's what you get with cheap Chinese quality.
That may not be problem with the one you have since your panel uses much smaller emitters that are likely underdriven.

I would only recommend these panels for someone who's already using white LED and thinks adding a bit of red wavelength light to the spectrum would help. (White LED light actually does not have as much red light in its spectrum as other white light sources)

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Indoor Citrus planter
« on: December 01, 2018, 10:29:23 PM »
And the red and blue is suposed to be used much better than the full spectrum lights.
red and blue is supposed to be theoretically more efficient, but I've found that plants grow a bit better under white than red and blue.
I suspect though a combination of white and red would be the most optimal combination.

In any case, the efficiency of cheaper red+blue lights often tend to be a bit lower than white LED, simply because there's been so much mass large scale production of white LED lamps, so that probably brings down the efficiency from what the spectral efficiency conversion to photosynthesis would otherwise be.

My general take is that if you have lower than optimal lighting levels and really want to reduce energy consumption, red+blue may be the way to go, but if you have higher lighting levels red+blue reach saturation sooner.
Anyway I don't think we're talking about any gigantic efficiency losses from going from a typical lower cost red+blue grow lamp to a white LED lamp, maybe 25 to 40 percent. Considering that grow areas often need a little bit of extra supplemental heating, this isn't really a loss at all.

In fact if you're using fluorescent lighting together with an electric heater and thinking about upgrading to more expensive LED to increase efficiency, I wouldn't even bother. You're not going to be saving energy. All forms of lighting are virtually 100 percent efficient, it's just they are dissipating a portion of their energy as heat, and if you need that heat they're not really any less efficient than an electric space heater at producing heat. Heating is likely going to take several times as much energy as lighting anyway.
Another reason why I suspect it may be more efficient (in terms of energy usage) to grow inside under artificial lights, if it helps hold the heat in, than inside a greenhouse that has to be constantly heated throughout the entire Winter.

Cold Hardy Citrus / Re: Long term cold hardy citrus breeding project
« on: December 01, 2018, 02:37:19 AM »
Walt was kind enough to give me 2 of the seeds.
So far they have not germinated yet.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Garcinia mangostana - Mangosteen seedlings
« on: November 23, 2018, 10:11:49 PM »
Those mangosteen seedlings look unbelievably good considering the lack of root space.
I don't know what your secret is. In my experience these are really hard to grow.

I don't want to discourage you, but it's possible those mangosteens may begin to experience decline if they are not replanted into a much larger container with more root space.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Please ID mandarine variety
« on: November 22, 2018, 05:27:47 PM »
Looks very much like Satsuma

However, if they are all very small and none of them are medium-sized, it could also be Kishu.

Kishu is believed to be one of the parents of Satsuma, which explains the close resemblence.
However, Satsuma has more cold hardiness, so if these are being imported from Southern Russia or Georgia I would think it would be more likely to be Satsuma.

The flavor or Satsuma (and especially the smell of the oils in the peel) tends to be a bit more aromatic than Kishu.

Kishu can go under different names, and it might be sold as "Pixie", or maybe "fairy" in your country, I'm not sure.

They are both really good varieties (in my personal opinion), have few seeds, often have none, and the peel is effortless to remove.

Cold Hardy Citrus / Re: Winter care of citranges, etc.
« on: November 21, 2018, 08:49:19 PM »
Walt, out where you are (zone 6) your citranges are probably going to need full covering over the Winter season, and even into early Spring.

Going from zone 8 to 7 is a big jump, and going from 7 to 6 is a big jump yet again.

Cold Hardy Citrus / Re: a few pictures from the Pacific Northwest
« on: November 21, 2018, 05:03:15 PM »
The tase is sweet and sour, I find it somehow unique.
Probably reminiscent of Satsuma, I would imagine, though more sour and like lemonade.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Mangosteen Advice Thread
« on: November 21, 2018, 04:51:48 PM »
Part of the reason I suggested a mound is because the alkalinity in the soil is unlikely to leach up above the soil line into the mound.

If the alkalinity is creating a nutrient uptake issue, the roots will still be able to pull in those nutrients from the mound.

Maybe a 10-14 inch high mound, with the edges of the mound just a little wider than the hole.

Try to put the other plants around it so it is more likely to recieve morning sun. And consider the direction of the prevailing winds and try to put something in its path to block it.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Mangosteen Advice Thread
« on: November 21, 2018, 04:47:20 PM »
Add sulfur to correct ph, yearly
Sulfur (we're talking about elemental sulfur, yellow, not sulphates) is good at keeping the pH down over time but I would worry about sulfur (again talking about elemental yellow) not being good for the roots (especially since mangosteen roots are notoriously sensitive). There is a chemical reaction in alkaline conditions leading to sulfites or thiosulfites.
It also might impart a less than pleasant flavor once the mangosteen does eventually fruit.

Cold Hardy Citrus / Re: Long term cold hardy citrus breeding project
« on: November 21, 2018, 04:31:46 PM »
MIC is another poncirus hybrid (1/8th poncirus) that doesn't have a poncirus taste. I have two of which I believe were derived from a seedling from MIC.
One of them I planted out in the ground. So far it doesn't appear to be as hardy compared to others but is still too early to tell. (It's doing better than Ten Degree but worse than Yuzu)

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Tqangerines have little flavor
« on: November 20, 2018, 03:31:56 PM »
I know Meyer lemons can develop an off flavor if you wait too long to pick them.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Pictures from middle Georgia
« on: November 20, 2018, 03:29:16 PM »
Well, my little trees have their PJs on.
Very creative setup.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Tqangerines have little flavor
« on: November 19, 2018, 11:32:18 PM »
Lots of things can lead to more watery insipid flavor in mandarins. For some varieties, it takes several years to develop decent flavor, and many more years for that flavor to slowly improve.

Dancy is supposedly supposed to be the gold standard for mandarin flavor (or so I have read), but I personally do not care for that type of flavor myself.
(I am wondering, are you sure it's not just personal preference and mandarin variety?)

Sometimes too much watering while the fruits are developing can lead to more washed out flavor.

Also sometimes climate can make a difference with some citrus.

Cold Hardy Citrus / Re: Ichanquat 6-7-2
« on: November 19, 2018, 07:45:23 PM »
Very impressive for such a large citrus to be growing outside in the Paris region. Especially one that does not have trifoliate in its ancestry.
It must have inherited desirable hardiness traits from both its parents. I don't think ichangensis by itself would have done as well out there.

Did you protect the tree while it was young?

Cold Hardy Citrus / Re: a few pictures from the Pacific Northwest
« on: November 19, 2018, 03:52:04 PM »
Seattle and Paris have roughly the same climate conditions, with the hermetic cover in a sunny spot  shown for Bloomsweet the death of the plant is guaranteed.
Socal2warm I would not cover any of my citrus under a plastic cover for long.
The cover does have a permeable fabric mesh at the top to vent off extra heat. Although I would not be that concerned even if the plant was completely surrounded in the plastic. I'm fairly sure the plant isn't going to overheat during the Winter here, the temperatures stay pretty cool.

I took a measurement and the temperature inside the cover is only 6 degrees F (that's 3.3 degrees C) warmer than the temperature read right outside the cover on a sunny day.

And I'm sure our winter sun is much weaker than yours and its colder here too.
I believe the location here is comparable to the far South of Switzerland, at least during the Winter.
In about late November the climate transitions from a cooler Mediterranean-like climate to a wet temperate rainforest.

I am at the same latitude as you. Just not in the mountains with elevation. Although there is often very cool air blowing in from the Pacific Ocean, that I think approximates a high elevation level, at least more than half the time in the Winter.

Very remarkable that you are able to grow Keraji in Lucerne, although not surprising they haven't seemed to ripen all the way.

I'm sure there must be many culinary uses for green Keraji fruits even if they haven't rippened all the way.

Cold Hardy Citrus / Re: a few pictures from the Pacific Northwest
« on: November 18, 2018, 09:07:03 PM »
Socal2warm, youíre only covering them before a predicted freeze, right? Or are they covered just for the photos? As you know, they are more cold hardy if allowed to experience temps in 30ís and 40ís and be somewhat dormant before a freeze event
You're forgetting these are growing in the PNW, pretty far latitude North.

I think the particular climate where these are growing makes them particularly suitable to using a plant cover. Relatively mild winters, but pretty constant cool temperatures most of the time. I'm leaving them on all the time at this time into the year, but am pretty confident they're not going to overheat in there. The temperatures on a warm sunny day at this time in the year only get up to 52.
In fact I'm counting on those covers to help raise the daytime temperatures during the early Spring, because otherwise the temperatures are going to be too low to start growing.

I think about November through the start of April is the time when it is appropriate to have the cover on, the danger of overheating doesn't really begin until April here.

These covers might not work so well in somewhere like the South.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Mangosteen Advice Thread
« on: November 18, 2018, 08:44:39 PM »
That alkaline limestone soil is likely going to leach into your more acidic loamy soil over time.
Also, the roots of that mangosteen are eventually going to expand out in all directions and reach the limestone.
Perhaps planting the mangosteen on a slightly raised mound over the hole? And maybe surround the edge of the hole with a soil partioner? (around the sides, not the bottom)

I'd make sure the hole is at least 30 inches wide and 30 inches deep (preferrably 36 deep if possible). Next you may wish to sprinkle some alum (garden store for lowering pH) at the very bottom of the hole before you fill it in, so if for some reason in the future the ground does become completely saturated with water, the alum will leach in with the limestone and you won't get a net alkalinity in the soil. Also I would mix in a lot of decaying compost into the soil, possibly also a little peat moss, because that can help slowly release some acidity as it breaks down.

Maybe plant a banana nearby the mangosteen to help provide some shade. Then you can always hack the banana back later if the mangosteen gets really big.

The hole is roughly 43 inches diameter by 2 feet deep.
I know it's really difficult digging down in that ground, but I'm thinking 2 feet is not going to be deep enough.
First, the roots are going to want to go down much more than that after 2 years. Second, you want a nice buffer layer so if any limestone alkalinity starts leaching in, it's not going to immediately move into the layer where the roots all are.
Keep in mind there have been many attempts with mangosteen in Southern Florda and most of them have failed, likely due to the limestone soil. You want to go to greater lengths than the average person would have been likely to go to.

How should I line it? Should I leave holes for drainage?
Around the sides, not the bottom.

Maybe add a layer of alum and/or peat moss at the bottom.

Also, any advice on soil composition is appreciated. "deep rich organic soil, especially sandy loam or laterite" is recommended on the site. How might I achieve such soil?
Get the more expensive potting quality soil, maybe something organic.

Some of the cheaper landscape soils are lighter weight, have a lot of wood chips in them, and aren't really rich or good at holding moisture. Don't get those.

Maybe think about starting a compost pile.

I would mix in 30-40% compost with a high quality dark black potting soil.

Cold Hardy Citrus / Re: Long term cold hardy citrus breeding project
« on: November 18, 2018, 08:31:31 PM »
No, it is a hybrid between tetraploid Fortunella hindsii and Clementine
Thanks, Ilya. I believe there are two different citrus that go under the name 'Reale' but I believe you are right here.

Cold Hardy Citrus / Re: a few pictures from the Pacific Northwest
« on: November 18, 2018, 04:45:04 PM »
Bloomsweet with a protective plant cover over it, up against a South-facing wall in a sunny warm spot:

I wish I could get some of those seeds.

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