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Messages - Johnny Eat Fruit

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Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / Re: Jan Boyce scion for sale
« on: February 10, 2020, 12:10:09 PM »
I would like to get some but not until late March or Early April when temps are warmer and growth is well underway.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Will it or won’t it.
« on: January 13, 2020, 08:00:28 PM »
High heat in the summer does help but long term success has yet to be determined and you have a rootstock that is adapted to Florida, not California.

You need 8-10 years of growing experience to determine success at your location. You're too green to claim victory yet Brother.

Take Simon's advice and grow seedling and use them as rootstock.

Learning to Graft opens a wide range of new possibilities. Conversely not being able to grade severely limits your success and options.

Start to learn to graft with Apples, they are the easiest. Mangos are the Hardest relatively but the skill can be acquired in time.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Will it or won’t it.
« on: January 13, 2020, 06:30:07 PM »
Take simons advice and learn to graft Brother. Life will be a lot easier.

Your tree is a goner.

Florida rootstock (Turpentine) is a real hit and miss usually, miss.

For Best Results Mangos also like sandy soil with high permeability. If your soil is heavy (Clay) you will need to mix in 30% pumice to help break it up and give your trees a better chance.


At My location the following are wonderful.

In Order

1.  Mangos - Newer top Zill Cultivars tree-ripened.
2.  Tropic Gold  or Royal Apricots - Tree Ripened in June (Rich complex flavor, store Apricots suck)
3.  Fresh Homegrown Strawberries
4.  Fresh Farmers Market Big Cherrys (at peak firmness and flavor, if they are soft & overripe they suck)
5.  Fresh Homegrown Blueberries (Southmoon in particular)
6.  Homegrown apples (Not fuji but lesser know varieties from days past) Multi Grafted Trees work well. Apples are easy to graft.
7.  Kinnow Mandarin tree-ripened in May (Best Tasting Late Season Mandarin). Washington Navel Orange in March is also Great.
8.  Mulberries - Oscar and Black Persian (Better than Blackberries)
9.  Lychee - Brewster grows well at my location and tastes great
10.  Cherimoya - Various varieties


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: First time grafting jitters
« on: October 10, 2019, 08:51:26 PM »
Time will tell if your graft takes. It's late in the season and I have had similar new growth at this stage fail.

Hopefully, you will have some luck on your side and warm temperatures.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Help ID this lychee
« on: September 26, 2019, 06:38:04 PM »
I have two lychee trees, a Brewster and Mauritius.

Your leaf structure, color and tree form look like a Mauritius but it's hard to say for sure.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Mallika and Mahachanok mangoes
« on: September 26, 2019, 06:31:10 PM »
I am looking forward to some Mallika fruit next year.

My small tree is starting it's 2nd flush now and has grown well this year since I placed it in the ground in early 2018.

Your fruit looks delicious.


Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / Re: 20 gallon Coconut Cream mango FS
« on: September 17, 2019, 02:23:10 PM »
Mimosa Nursery in LA has some Coconut Cream trees for $180 but they are on turpentine root stock.

I was there over the weekend and saw a row of them. Must have arrived recently from Florida.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Lychee success in SoCal
« on: September 03, 2019, 07:54:43 PM »
How far is the trunk of your Bruster lychee tree from the wall in your house? (Garage)

I will be planting my Bruster in the ground next spring and want to make sure I place it far enough away. Just wondering on recommended Spacing for these trees.

Beautiful Tree BestDay.


My four mango trees arrived today. Thanks, Phelipe.

Most were larger than expected.  Great service and fast shipment as promised. Even boxed in two separate boxes because of the extra-large size but did not charge extra.

See photos of the trees I received today.


Butter Cream Mango Tree after Repotting

Cac Root-Ball

 Cac Manto Tree

Orange Sherbert after Repotting

Seacrest Mango Tree

Citrus General Discussion / Re: 7 on 1 inverted bud grafts
« on: August 30, 2019, 07:40:21 AM »
Pretty Cool.  I just Did (7) inverted T-bud grafts to four different Rich 16-6 trifoliate rootstocks. Temperatures are warm right now so I am hoping for a high take rate also.

You can likely manage size of your Gold Nugget on semi dwarf root stock. I finally just completed the removal of my tree and so glad I did. There is so much more room now in my backyard now with that tree gone. My tree was crowing out everything is close proximity including one of my mango trees. You can only eat so much citrus during the main citrus season (January to May) and my Navel Orange, Yosemite Gold, Oroblanco and a few other grafts provide more than enough for our family. Still love the Page for juicing and the Kinnow for its superior flavor later in the season.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: SoCal mango flowering update
« on: August 21, 2019, 08:53:26 PM »
Very nice Mangos Simon. In September you should be enjoying killer mangos. Your ST and PPK mango Trees looks excellent.

If you have a chance can you please post some photos of the actual trees from a more wide-angle view like your ST tree photo.

If you can tell us the rootstock of each grafted tree, when it was grafted and how long the rootstock has been in the ground would be helpful to ascertain growth rates hear in California on Non Turpentine rootstock. 

Thanks Man.  Looking Good. Your leading the way Brother.


My Sweet Tart mango tree is finally flushing now. Last year in 2018 it only had one growth flush. Hopefully this year I will get two from this tree. Time will tell.

Sweet Tart Mango Tree (8-13-2019)

What is the RBZT Method?.

Not sure what you're talking about.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Out with the old...
« on: August 11, 2019, 01:58:31 PM »
Good Job. I too have recently removed (5) dud trees that are either nonproductive, inconsistent in production, mediocre quality or too big and labor-intensive to keep Trimming.

My Gold Nugget mandarin, Cot-N-Candy Aprium, two peach trees and one plum were on the chopping block this year and were hacked down last month.

I love the appearance of my Pdero walnut tree but I only have about 20 nuts from a 15-foot tree and last year was the same. That tree will likely be removed next year. 


Citrus General Discussion / Re: Shasta Gold mandarin
« on: August 10, 2019, 11:50:32 PM »
Shasta Gold and Yosemite Gold are very similar.

My eight year only Yosemite Gold on C-35 rootstock it doing very well and loaded with fruit for a bountiful 2020 harvest.

They are alternate bearers with high-quality fruit.  Very richly flavored with consistent production.

Either mandarin fruit tree would be a fine addition.


Don't Let young mango trees hold fruit. Most people want immediate gratification but success is for those that are tolerant and willing to wait.

In California, we have slow and poor growth as it is why give the young tree early stress of production? 

Be Patient. So many impatient growers.


How long has your GN been in the ground Simon.?

You were smart to plant a semi-dwarf tree.

The Gold Nugget has a tendency to get very tall over time.  At first, it will seem manageable but after a decade it will be almost as tall as a grapefruit tree on comparable rootstock, but not as wide.   

Every mandarin tree I have grown over the years alternate bears even with thinning.  It will be interesting to see how your fruit quality is over time with your trifoliate rootstock. I suspect it will be better than mine on C-35 standard rootstock.  Much happier with the more consistent fruit quality of the Yosemite Gold even though it is not as sweet as the Gold Nugget.  Hopefully, you will not get many of those big puffed up round balls of fiber on your semi-dwarf like I got on my C-35 but only time will tell.

Good Luck


You are highly unlikely to find a top tier Gold Nugget purchased from a grocery store but it is possible to get one from a more mature home grown tree. At it's best the GN is like liquid sunshine with a intense sweetness and a moderate mandarin flavor. It is the sweetest citrus I have tasted but not the most richly flavored. The Page, Yosemite Gold and Kinnow all have a richer mandarin flavor compared to the Gold Nugget. The Kinnow mandarin is the best tasting of the bunch but it has one major flaw, 25 seeds per fruit. Also the Gold Nugget is not as juicy as most tangerines, similar to a Washington Navel orange, so if you like to make mandarin juice the Page is perfect because of the high juice content and rich flavor but they tend to be small in size.

It is interesting to note if you choose to grow the Gold Nugget younger trees (less than 6 years) tend to produce mediocre fruit. Older trees will give you a glimpse of what GN is capable of. Look for small to medium size fruit where the skin is thin and tight. About 35-40% of the crop will be in this category and they will be excellent (top tier). Another 35-40% will be fair to good but nothing exceptional in terms of quality, only average. About 25% of the crop will be large lumpy and fibrous balls that are completely worthless and go right into my trash can.

There you have it. I think most people only need one mandarin tree but think hard before deciding which one it is.


It's interesting your LZ suffered from die back. I had no such issues with my two trees grafted with Lemon Zest. My LZ trees are starting there 2nd flush of the year and are the fastest-growing thus far for 2019. My Nam Doc Mai wants to keep flowering and I wish it would just get growing.

I do regularly spray with Sulfer and on occasion cooper just like you. I did have some powdery mildew with LZ but this also effected some of my manila rootstock trees as well.

By the way, I regularly apply Rock Sust (Azomite) to all of my fruit trees and that solves all micronutrient issues.  Our soil especially needs calcium replenishment from time to time and Azomite has 2% calcium.

Time will tell how well LZ does in our area in the long run.


For the Gold Nugget close spacing is 10 feet or less on standard rootstock. The tree will grow so tall over time it will block out sunlight for trees in close proximity.

On C-35 rootstock the GN will reach 18-20 feet tall. On Semi Dwarf rootstock it should be around 12-13 feet at maturity. It usually produces a crop every other year when it finally does start to produce. (It's a long wait)

The biggest problem with this cultivar is in inconsistent fruit quality. When you get a good one it is top tier and very sweet but some are only fair in quality and others get puffy and fibrous and are awfull.

I can not recommend the Gold Nugget for the homeowners unless you have plenty of room and are very, very patient.

The Yosemite Gold produces earlier, has consistent fruit quality and in my opinion, is more attractive as the leaves are bigger and deeper green. The Yosemite Gold is moderately tall and bushier than the Gold Nugget which is more erect.  My YG is a keeper and produces large seedless fruit with a wonderful rich flavor. 


If you have a Gold Nugget you do Not want to place it in close proximity to any other fruit tree. Over time the GN Mandarin will tower above any tree close to it and block light. Also it's aggressive root system will crowd out anything close. If you want this tree the only solution is one with a semi-dwarf root stock but you will likely have to wait a long time (5-6 years minimum) for meaningful fruit production to begin.  I would much rather get a navel orange tree as they start production within several years of planting and much more consistent than the Gold Nugget. Just my experience growing citrus for 30 years.


After nine years my Gold Nugget mandarin on C-35 has produced on one good crop. The tree is too tall, grows fast once established and requires constant maintenance to keep it under (14) feet.  By giving it a haircut every year this reduces new fruit production for the following season. The Gold Nugget also is alternative bearing like most mandarins but I found the fruit quality to be variable with some fruit being excellent and others to be dry and fibrous. My Yosemite Gold has both more reliable production and fruit quality and my Cara Cara Pink Navel produces excellent fruit each year with a much smaller foot print. In my view both of these trees are superior to the Gold Nugget.

If I had more room in the backyard and was to do it over again I might plant one Gold Nugget on semi dwarf Trifoliate root stock but there are other citrus trees that offer better long term consistency. 


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Extreme chlorosis
« on: July 07, 2019, 07:36:04 PM »
Why don't you just add Rock Dust (Azomite) for all of the trace elements and some organic fertilizer like chicken manure or worm casting?

I don't understand your treatment (liquid smoke). Just give the plant what it needs and you will be fine.


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