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Messages - WaterFowler

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1
Do you find that you need to irrigate them, or do they make it without water?  Because in the bay area I've seen them grow like weeds, with no water, and are hard to deal with when they grow.

These particular castor bean plants are sitting in nice damp ground all the time. Runoff from ice cream bean and starfruit  trees. The small ice cream bean and mango seedlings in particular that sit underneath them are happy as a clam in the 110+ degree heat. I have other castor bean plants sitting in other parts of the ranch who's leaves feel a little cold but not like these. I'm guessing because the other ones are 2-3 years old, get less water, and their leaves are much smaller, thus get less cold. The castor bean leaves in the photo are only 4 months old but have huge leaves over a foot across. The larger the leaves, the colder they feel. It's quite a phenomenon when it's blazing hot outside and you grab these leaves and they actually feel chilled. I was surprised they temped at 83, they feel much colder.

2
I have noticed that my young subtropicals planted around castor bean plants seem to do better than the others planted around my other shade helper trees, namely moringa and guavas. Their large leaves feel cool to the touch, almost like they've been stuck in a refrigerator.

So, I got out my temp gun and gauged the temperature of leaves of various trees within a 10 foot radius. Here are the results

Banana 107



Guava 108



Feijoa 111



Castor bean 83



Does anyone else notice their cold leaves creating a very nice microclimate for their young tropical trees? Too bad the plant itself is butt ugly.  ;D

3
Ding! Ding! I think we have a winner! I don't remember buying tree tomato seeds. But whatever!  ;D Photos of the leaves look the same.

They are supposed to hate our hot dry weather but this thing looks happy as a clam and growing like crazy. In 3 years I have cut it in half, it had freeze dieback, and I have transplanted it 3 times but it refuses to die!

It's in solanacae family Tamarillo I think!

4
I don't think it's a that one sahai. The leaves are totally different. I thought it might be a So-Shang fruit tree, I definitely tried to germinate seeds of that fruit but the leaves look too light, and not robust and glossy enough. Plus the fruit is not elliptical.

5
Tried to grow probably 20 varieties of fruit 3 years ago. I don't remember what I sowed but the seeds that didn't germinate, I tossed in a raised bed garden. This one came up after a while, so I put into a container, then transplanted into a,spot in the yard. It grew really fast the 1st year, then the winter came, it got down to 26 degrees and it killed about a foot off the top. I then wanted to put a different tree in its place so I moved it. It started to produce fruit this spring but only one took. It has leaves similar to citrus only much larger and lighter.

Any guesses?






6
Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Fruiting Shade Tree for So Cal
« on: April 18, 2018, 02:50:24 PM »
Moringa trees jump out of the ground like crazy and are much easier to shape than Mulberries but they are a health benefits type tree rather than a fruit to eat out of hand type tree. They can go from seed to 10 feet easily in a single year here. But mine are out in the open rather up against structure so when it got down to 28 degrees the winter before last, it killed the top half of the trees. They are a nice looking tree that flowers profusely most of the year attracting lots of pollenators to your yard.

Oh, that's a nice idea.  I have heard folks prune them back hard in the winter.  How tall can they get in SoCal if allowed to grow?

The tallest I've seen here is around 20 feet but that's because the winters here keep them in check. They will probably get bigger along the coastal areas. One downside is that they don't have a huge spread, so you might have to plant more than one depending on how much shade you need. On the plus side, they lose a lot of their leaves during the winter, leaving sparse leaves, bare limbs and hanging drumsticks all the way until late spring allowing lots of light in when you need it most. The leaves and drumsticks are packed full of nutrients, so I imagine they are fantastic for compost and mulch.

7
Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Fruiting Shade Tree for So Cal
« on: April 18, 2018, 02:20:57 PM »
Moringa trees jump out of the ground like crazy and are much easier to shape than Mulberries but they are a health benefits type tree rather than a fruit to eat out of hand type tree. They can go from seed to 10 feet easily in a single year here. But mine are out in the open rather up against structure so when it got down to 28 degrees the winter before last, it killed the top half of the trees. They are a nice looking tree that flowers profusely most of the year attracting lots of pollenators to your yard.

8
Do they also make a sheepinator?  ;)

How about a gophernator?  ;D

Grabbed a 4-5' gopher snake yesterday on the back side of the ranch to put into a gopher hole near my mango tree. And he had the audacity to bite me in the knee while I was holding him by the tail. Normally they don't strike when being held up like that. Caught me off guard lol.

9
I have one out in the open. I bought it from Home Depot (LaVerne I think). It's in its 2nd spring. Last year I covered it with a shade cloth when temps got over 100. Never seemed happy. Threw out a few stunted fruit and the leaves stayed stubby and dark. This year I'm going to leave out in full sun until I see obvious signs of distress. So far the tree seems happy as a clam. Seems to love the 98-100 degree weather we've been having this week. Many of the leaves have gotten broader, and they are a lighter glossier green, there's lots if purple new growth plus it's been flowering for about a month now. I'll see what happens when temps climb into the 110-120 range. If it suffers greatly, I'll probably move it next February. I thought it was a full sun tree like our other citrus. I didn't know it was an "understory tree".

10
Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Loquat - when is it ripe ?
« on: April 12, 2018, 01:16:21 PM »
When the birds start picking at them.  :(

11
Getting a dog out of the question? My dogs are a bunch of sweethearts but chase after everything that moves. Rabbits, coyotes, people etc. One of them has a wireless electronic collar, the other won't wander off without his buddy.

12
I am surprised that this fruit never caught on commercially, because it fruits so well and can be really excellent eating. Also some types store very well. There was an attermpt to commercialize it i think duirng the 40's in the Fallbrook area of southern California. There are still some remnant orchards there.

According to the lecturer farmers shipped WS by rail all the way to NY in the 1900s.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=fyuUEPp1SVo

Very informative piece for the still somewhat clueless WS growers like myself. I'm surprised it only has had 9 views in over 3 months.

13
Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Why my guava leaves are brown?
« on: February 26, 2018, 12:41:10 PM »
Looks like a lot of my guavas.  :(

Made it almost the whole winter without any damage, and thought I was out of the woods, then here comes the cold. Got down to at least 30 degrees, but the mangos and everything else took it good except for the guavas not up against structure, the top 3 feet of bananas, and the passion fruit canopy at the top of 2 trees.

14
Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: sapote trees
« on: February 19, 2018, 12:19:01 PM »
Be certain to read the small print on HD fruit trees.  Labeling a white sapote tree "Vernon" when it is in fact a seedling will not get you the desired results.  HD sells "Cate" macadamia trees from Laverne that are labelled "Cate", but are seedlings of Cate and that fact is written in small print on the label.  You won't get "Cate" characteristics from a seedling if only one parent is Cate. 

Plant a white sapote seed and graft it over to the true variety you want from a reliable source.  White sapotes are easy to graft and you can have a tree with many varieties grafted on it.

I should have my head examined. I knew Laverne sold "Manilla" mango seedlings, it didn't even dawn on me to think the rest of their "cultivars" are seedlings too. I bought 2 WS from Mimosa last year, but they were from Laverne too. I just bought a Vernon from HD on Friday. I'm going to have to see if I can find a graft point and see if the label has the fine print you talk about. I ordered some Big Jim loquats too. These seedlings as well?  :-\ Oh well, live and learn. I'll be returning the HD one if it's a seedling.

Edit: Just called Laverne. The lady said all their trees are grafted, including the WS and loquats, except for a few exceptions. She says all their mangos are grafted except for the manilla. I could have sworn the graft line was easily visible but you had me doubting myself.  ;D

15
Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: sapote trees
« on: February 17, 2018, 12:32:14 PM »
The Home Depot near me has both Suebelle and Vernon White Sapotes in stock at the moment. Kind of surprised because I special ordered some at the next closest Home Depot over a month ago, and they still haven't called me that they've come in (I think I'll call now). They were $29.94

16
Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / WTB. Black Madeira fig cuttings
« on: February 15, 2018, 01:18:07 AM »
Title

PM if you have any of these cuttings for sale

17
poly tubing and spider drippers should work pretty well if they throw out 2 or 3 ft diameter.  You probably have to run them for many hours at a time to feed a decent size tree.  You are also in the real desert so things may struggle in general there even without the wildlife.  Thats a pretty extreme weather area there right?  Mango trees would probably be a good thing to grow.

The ones I have in the city do really well. Much better climate. More humidity, less wind and cold. The ones I have on the open ranch are more of a challenge. I'm just starting to figure out what spots, whether it be because of the soil, up against one side of a tree or structure, etc, are working best.

Coach62. I keep a single shot 20 gauge loaded with steel shot (don't want lead in my soil)outside of the gun safe for this reason but I rarely find time to use it.


18


I can photo the different setups later if you want to see them.

That would be awesome spaugh. I already have an idea of what I want to do, but would like to see your setups first before I make my purchases

What kind of piping do you currently have?  Maybe snap a photo of a setup. 

I'm using simple 1/2" tubing (soft) with those cheap "spider type" emitters.

19


I can photo the different setups later if you want to see them.

That would be awesome spaugh. I already have an idea of what I want to do, but would like to see your setups first before I make my purchases

20
I think I'm going to take your advice and switch over to large coverage spray emitters on the trees over 3 feet. Right now, I have bubblers on each side of the trees, but they don't cover the entire 360 area of the tree. Reason being, the emitters are cheaper. I can get a bag of them for $10-$15. But like I have learned the hard way so many times in my life. Don't go cheap on things you already have a lot of time and money into.

I have those gopher Cinch traps. They work pretty good. I just don't have the time to look for new holes and set the traps constantly. If I see snakes on the road, I always bring them to the ranch, and put them in the gopher holes. In fact 3 days ago I lifted some rolls of shade material and there was a kingsnake and a larger gopher snake curled up together. First time I have ever witnessed 2 different species of snakes cohabitating. Especially since the kingsnake preys on gopher snakes.

21
I will start planting small trees in about a month and I would like to know your experiences with gopher predation on small trees. I purchased a roll of chicken wire and will going down about 12-14" below the surface to protect many of them but this will be a pain the the butt to do for all of them.

Last year they killed:

Lots of guavas, which I planted all around the ranch to provide a good microclimate/shade protection for future small trees before I realized castor bean plants work much better.
2 tamarind seedlings
2 jackfruit seedlings
1 3 foot sweet tart mango(this might have just been rot since I waited a couple of months to pull it after it died)
1 white sapote seedling
1 banana
I know for a fact they don't seem to like any of the annonas but the weather here kills these off just fine so it doesn't really make a difference I guess

I plan on putting these in the ground:

White sapote
Tamarind
Ice Cream Bean
Barbados Cherry
Mango seedlings
Starfruit
Feijoa
Mamey

Which of these in your experience, gophers seem to munch on and which do they tend to ignore? Along with any other trees they tend to like or ignore, for future reference.




22
My white sapotes in partial shade and in full shade seem to grow better than the ones in full sun.

I have a Suebelle in full sun, except during the summer I cover it with 60% shade. It's not dying, and it's a little bushy but it's not growing very fast. I have a Vernon up against a cement wall with a big banana plant on one side and a guava on the other, that sees almost no direct sun, has grown 30-36" in 8 months. It got too leggy so I finally decided to cut 18" off the top. Also the seedings I have underneath a mango tree are growing like crazy and look really healthy while the ones out in the open(under filtered light during summer) are growing slower. The weather is very hot here so this may just be because of my particular climate.

23
My white sapotes in partial shade and in full shade seem to grow better than the ones in full sun.

24
Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Best potting soil
« on: December 10, 2017, 01:59:32 PM »
I use 100% clay dirt on mangoes.. i get no problems for the oast 2 years...


I know you're being facetious but I noticed the amateur nursery guy I buy my mango seedlings from has his in 3 gallon containers full of mostly sand and very little organic matter. They are big and beautiful. So as an experiment last February I put 20 12"-18" Guamuchil seedlings in pots full of 3/4 sand/dirt from my front yard and 1/4 steer manure. Then ran a stingy drip system along all of them. At the same time I put 10 in in a mixture of 1/2 Miracle Grow, 1/2 Patio Plus potting soil mix, that I hand water as needed. To date all the seedlings in in the dirt mix are 5-7' tall and still full of red tips growing like crazy. The ones in the potting soil mix are green and beautiful but only around 3 feet tall, and they have stopped growing in the cold. They are half the size of the ones in the dirt mix. They only thing I have added to the ones in dirt is citrus fertilizer every couple of months. They are also covered in grass and have castor bean plants growing above them blocking out a lot of the sun. Confused...

25
Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: White sapote dropping its leaves
« on: November 20, 2017, 02:48:50 PM »
Waterfowler, They should be fine outside in the central valley. Have you planted any out in the ground?


I'm from the Coachella Valley, it gets much hotter here than the Central Valley. I do have a Suebelle and a Vernon planted outside and they did fine during the summer with morning sun only. I kept the white sapotes under a grow lamp inside because even under the 60% shade cloth the heat is stifling.

All the other species of tropicals loved it inside under the grow lamp. You should see my sapodillas. Big, glossy perfect leaves. But the white sapotes seemed to hate it inside soon as soon as they got a few inches high. In early October I put some in ground and others outside in the same containers. Many had lost all over their leaves. All of them exploded with growth after I took them outside.

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