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Tropical Fruit Discussion / Longan Pride
« on: June 16, 2018, 05:28:51 PM »
I drove by a truck on the highway heading home after getting a load of fertilizers. I saw a truck with a sticker in the back. It read "Longan Pride". I said, right on, it's about time people grow quality fruits to be proud of. Later I was next to him on the highway with my window down I almost shouted "I love Longans! I also have love for the lychees, rambutans, and pulasans".

.. And I realized it was Tongan  :o . I am still thinking of getting a sticker that says "Avocado Pride"  ;D

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Using weights on young mango trees
« on: February 23, 2018, 02:50:19 PM »
I had been using 7' long steel poles to try to pull down branches, and I was not extremely successful due to winds lifting the poles out that were hammered in. I recently watched a video on the youtube channel "What's Ripening". The video reviewed a technique of using weights that I had read about several times (and heard described by several speakers and posters on TFF).  Seeing it on video gave me the courage to try it on a few trees. It was very practical for the reasons described in the video.

One thing I have noticed over the last couple years, the first scaffold is extremely critical in the mango's growth habit. The better formed the first scaffold up from the ground the better shape the tree takes on over its life. I would like to hear other opinions.

I had some old broken hollow tile blocks I was planning to use for fill. Bought a few hundred feet of rope for a few dollars. So its a cheap fix.

Here is Simon discussing the idea a few years ago.

Here is a link to the video. I appreciate he shares his successes and failures, and hope to do the same for the fruit community. The video is long but watching a 10min video is better than recovering from a bunch of failures :)

One other thing I remember from Dr Yonnemoto (...I think it was him...), you want to keep an angle 10 degrees above the horizon. This encourages new growth on the terminal (via the auxins). If you bend it too far down, the tree will try to form new buds or push growth elsewhere. There was also another note on heaving a branch heavily loaded with fruit and the benefits of a slight upward angle.  Anyone hear of anything similar?

Here is an example (this is a slightly sick Juliette):



Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / Want to Buy Mango Scions
« on: September 28, 2017, 01:45:06 AM »
Looking for the following varieties:
  • Kesar (or jumbo Kesar)
    Anwar Ratol
    St Maui

Let me know what you have and the $$


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Star fruit juicer
« on: September 20, 2017, 01:05:58 AM »
The blender works for like 10 or maybe 20. I have a few hundred from a young tree (and I have a couple trees). How can they be juiced efficiently? The biggest problem is pressed straining. Has anyone used a press?

Note: I don't have any kidney issues, and I wait until yellow/orange (no green parts).

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Depressing, Orange Sherbert Mango Broke
« on: July 03, 2017, 05:59:44 PM »
Went outside yesterday, found 2 yr old orange sherbet laying on its side. Cracked at and below the graft.

Tree was doing very healthy. Its planted in a very nitrogen rich zone. Looks like the canopy grew too fast for the trunk.  I found the sprinkler was clogged with ants, so it might have gotten thirsty over the last week. I don't recall reading anything about this cultivar being susceptible to breakage (unlike coconut cream).

I tried to recover by doing a couple of bark grafts on the stump. I have low expectations. Found a couple wild mangos to graft onto too.

I do not know of anyone else that has this one on the island or the state... pretty depressing. Especially considering they are $100 just for s/h.  :-[

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Sri Gading Chempadak Relative
« on: June 27, 2017, 04:30:06 PM »
A friend surprised me and brought back a grafted "Sri Gading" tree from Frankie's yesterday. I cannot find much info about this on the web.  Google just names this as a city in Malaysia. Which matches the info we got from Frankies.

Accompanying the tree was also a fruit. The fruit was better than a jack, sweet with a light spice flavor (peppery tang). Other people that tasted it didn't taste any spice flavor. One of my kids (who normally devours the durians and jackfruits) didn't care for this one. The core would strip the fruit more like a chempadak.  Some fruit-experts who tasted it yesterday said it tasted more like a jack than a chempadak.

I should have taken a picture of the fruit. The fruit was about 4lbs. About 18" long, and 6" in diameter..

I am excited to plant it, hopefully today.

On a side note. Second hand I hear Frankies no longer ships  :(  I guess that means more trips to Oahu (and renting a bigger car).

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Singapore Durian Adventure
« on: January 17, 2017, 10:09:17 PM »
I went to Singapore & Malaysia (Johor) last week. I thought I would share some details about my durian adventure from the trip.

My main intention was to go for a good friend's wedding. The second priority was to try various varieties of durian.  On my island, durian is quite rare. I have shared a durian with friends on several occasions, typically at HTFG meetings/conferences, but you are lucky if you get a taste.  There isn't much in the way of named varieties or different tastes.

For those that have never been to Singapore, its a really beautiful clean city.  Referred to as the Switzerland of the east, its covered by banking and banking related businesses. 

Some pictures of Singapore

I would be staying 1 day in Singapore and 3 days in Malaysia.  The first day was out to look for durian. I found this website to aid in locating durian stalls:*gid-75743101/

Before I left I flagged all the durian places on google maps and then download a copy of the map and flags. Then I could find where they were in proximity to each other and hit up the closes centers.
The first place I headed was Combat Durian and Sindy Durian. I was ready to head out 6am, but waited until 9am to head out.  Not heading to the advice that fruit was delivered, I thought I would get the jump on either leftovers or the first arrivals.  It was a 3 mile hike, and the temps were the same as back home (low 80s). I underestimated the humidity. At home (HI) the humidity is regularly around 50% and can get as high as 90%, the humidity in Singapore was really unbearable. 

I found some fruit markets open immediately, with nothing exotic that I hadn't seen before. The most exotic thing I found was a Malay pineapple, that was pointy on one side.

I easily found the first durian stall, and when I asked around, they said that you have to come back in the afternoon (after 3pm). Many locals frowned at me when I asked, saying its very expensive. For me, the price of the plane ticket was $900, buying several fruit at $30-50/ea wasn't going to deter me. 

I was surprised to find that they sell out all the fruit, at what was the equivalent of $30USD.   I caught a cab over to fruits 1 and wonderful durian. The driver told me the story of how durian arrives from Malaysia to Singapore. In the morning, they pick them up (from the ground, never picked from the tree). Its a 3 or 4 hour commute from Central/Northern Malaysia to the Singapore border.  They then wait for the rush hour traffic to die down before crossing into Singapore. The border crossing can take 1+ hours. They have lunch before delivering to the durian stalls. The typical Singaporean picks one up on the way home from work.

It was clear that in Singapore, to find durian you had to leave the high end areas like the Raffles district.

At fruits 1 I found XOXO which is the CAT variety. It was a little bitter. The seller spoke no English, and referred me to just eat the fridge durian, since it was already prepped. Being that this hunt was already 3 hours, I was tired, I would gladly take it.  The price was 22SGD (conversion rate of 1.6SGD to 1 USD) =14USD. It was pretty good, a little bitter, I finished the entire container (< 1kg).   That was probably a big mistake...

Some pics of fruits 1

I made it to wonderful durian, where I was sold a Musang King. I didn't research enough how to identify a Musang, so I was sold on the first taste.  I proceeded to eat that entire durian.  I got 2/3rds the way through before I quit.  At this point I was so full, I just wanted to lay down. I barely made was able to walk to the subway train about a 1/2 mile away. The subway train is cheap and the best way to get around.  A ride is about 1USD, and for a little more you can reach almost anywhere, in air-condition, typically underground where its cooler. I never rode the train in rush hour, so I cannot comment what its like with the rush.  Its pretty much like NYC subway, except without the trash, smell, graffiti, crime, well then its nothing like the NYC subway, except the convenience.  ;D

Some pics of wonderful durian:

I am now carrying my 1/3rd of a durian on the train, which the eyes and stares are going all around the car as everyone gets a whiff of the durian. I can see that everyone is wondering who is carrying a durian.  As I carry my loot back to the hotel, I am carefully scanning for the no-durian signs. Which have become a national symbol of certain high end areas of Asia. Nobody suspects its the foreigner in flip flops and shorts.

I have now triple bagged the durian and I take it to the hotel. Its a fairly nice hotel (the Fairmont). I smuggle it upstairs. When I come out from my room a half hour later, there is an air purifier next to my door.

The next day I head to the wedding prep in Johor, Malaysia. My friends father in law hears that I like durian, so he sets out a tray of frozen durian from his small orchard (24 trees). That was the best durian of the trip. Super sweet, no bitter taste. Unfortunately he did no the know the variety, he bought the property at auction. His trees were probably 30 years old.  I ate that tray for breakfast/lunch/the next day's breakfast and lunch.  His favorite fruit is durian. I asked his son, what his favorite food was of all the malaysia, singporean, japanese, chinese fusion dishes, he said durian was his favorite food. So its def. well liked.

In Malaysia durian stalls are everywhere.  They can be found on street corners, outside shops. We even ate durian while we waited for the car to get washed.

Some car wash durian place in Johor:

There was a lot of good info, my friend' father in law says as the trees become older the flavor really enhances. Some of the best durians come from the oldest trees. They never fertilize or water the trees.  For his trees, the production seems to vary, the biggest influence being if it rains during the flowering.

There was so much durian leftover, I took it back to Singapore. I stored it triple bagged in the hotel fridge. Now to find a place to eat it... I found a nice park with a nice shade tree. I can see as other tourists walk by, they must think I am clearly crazy sitting on the ground devouring the durian leftovers. I know the smell alone is probably disgusting... I don't care, it tastes really good.  At this point, I estimate I have eaten around 6+ pounds of durian on this trip. By this time I am durian'ed out. 

Also on the trip I found some freeze dried durian. I bought several bags to take back. They are actually pretty dang good. So for those who have a craving or just want a new snack, these are great to share.  I think I found them for $5USD per bag at a market there. Amazon lists a bag at $14, and it might be worth the novelty.

I also have some durian instant coffee which I haven't tried yet. I will post a review when I try it.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / HTFG Conference this weekend (anyone going?)
« on: September 29, 2016, 05:28:04 PM »
Dr. Yonemoto will be talking at one of the sessions. A couple years ago my neighbor bought his book. It was all in Japanese but managed to get a few ideas using the google translate camera app to scan through it. (Update: I didn't take pictures, but its a translation camera, that you put into video mode, and it takes the Japanese and shows you the English. Awesome utility.)

Anyone going? The conference circles the other islands as listed on the agenda too.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Anyone have a Inga Edulis Cachiri recipe
« on: August 01, 2016, 02:56:56 PM »
Tried google. Anyone tried to make Cachiri from Inga Edulis (Ice Cream Bean)?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / new pruning saw
« on: May 26, 2016, 02:16:23 PM »
I picked up a Barnel ZF330 at a trade show. I am eager to try it in the fall on the mangos.

The scabbard is the nicest scabbard I have ever seen. I was sold on the scabbard. It has rollers to guide entry/exit. Quick release from the belt loop, and optional belt clips for attachment to the thighs.

I hope the blade is as well designed as the scabbard.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Question about Bennett Alphonso
« on: March 14, 2016, 01:52:22 AM »
I can find very little information about the variety Bennett Alphonso beyond "its better". Is that more productive, more disease resistant?

What about a taste comparison between Alphonso (Ratnagiri) vs Bennett Alphonso?

This article also spells it, and seems to be written long ago.  I wonder if there is more up to date information.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Nursery's around LA
« on: June 26, 2015, 10:24:44 PM »
Going to be visiting LA in July. I am interested in visiting nursery's in SoCal.

In particular, nurseries that carry Avocados.

So far, in my notes I have:
Exotica (website is down, 1hr drive from LA)

thank you in advance,

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Polyembryonic Question
« on: March 24, 2015, 08:42:27 PM »
Sorry if this is coming across as a dumb question.....what I am I missing (scratching my head)?

So you grow multiple seedlings from a polyembrionic seedling. One of them may be identical to the parent. In affect a genetic clone. One does not know which is the clone. Isn't this just a game of chance? Do people grow all the embryos, or selectively choose one and pray?  Is there any science behind the reset of the DNA.  For example, the tree will believe its starting at age 0, instead of some of our most famous named varieties which can be pushing 100 years?

The only benefit I see with polyembrionic is multiple trees/rootstocks that can be split, or joined together in a multirootstock graft.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Grafting was fun, until....
« on: March 22, 2015, 07:11:39 PM »
....I dropped my grafting knife out my pouch and cut my foot open.  Thinking its not that bad I kept grafting mangos, until I looked down later and noticed a small pool of blood. Not sure if the fungicide on the knife helped or not, but it stung like heck till it got some neosporin.

I guess steel toed boots are in order now for serious grafting.  ;D

But seriously, I wish I had gotten into this sooner. Its much more enjoyable than I imagined. I actually enjoy giving grafted things away as much as keeping them for myself.  Lately its been a habit to horde seeds to grow rootstocks to graft and give away excess trees.

I have been using my shear pouch, pockets and a milk crate to carry all my grafting goods around between trees and pots in the nursery. I think I may switch to a set of carpenter bags. Anyone use anything similar?

Citrus General Discussion / Wanted: Flying Dragon Seeds
« on: March 16, 2015, 07:00:55 PM »
Looking for 30-50 flying dragon seeds. Anyone have or know of where to order them.

Tried google.

thanks in advance

(sorry, this topic should have gone under buy/sell/trade).....

Update: I got seeds. Thanks!

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Nursery Pictures
« on: March 10, 2015, 08:45:16 PM »
This is how I wished my nursery looked.

This is a pic of the NTBG nursery a tour a month ago with Fruit Growers Group.

This is how my nursery actually looks. I call it my greenhouse (at least its green  ;D)

Well, it serves the purpose, just not as glamorous.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Tips and Tricks to getting organized
« on: March 07, 2015, 01:13:37 AM »
I tried keeping a paper notebook and paper calendar for tracking fertilizer schedules, etc. It didn't work.

I recently realized outlook supports creating multiple calendars (it keeps my work calendar separate from my farm calendar). I made one calendar called a farm calendar. In it I put re-occurring appointments (with a reoccurring by weeks, every other week, or every other month). I then try to make all my appointments occur on Fridays (gives me the greatest chance to get stuff done on Friday or over the weekend).

I then have things like:
Foliar feed every month
Fertilize feed every month (offset by two weeks by foliar feeding)
Check citrus trees for pests
Fertilize Pineapples
Soon I will add special fertilization schedules and copper applications to mango varities
Eventually it will help me to track trees for approximate harvesting.

For making notes. I use microsoft note. Its a great notebook resource where you can build pages and chapters. Its also searchable, autosaves, can insert website links, photos, etc. I still use a paper notebook when out in the field or touring. But will try to put everything back into the computer when I get home

Here is a snapshot of my notebook

I also use excel + raingauge to track my rainfall. I can then plot monthly rainfall and figure out when the trees need extra supplemental water.
This is the best rain gauge I found. I will probably order a few more to last through the years.

There is probably a dozen or more things I can improve on... but I am making steady progress.

Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / Wanted: Avocado Scions
« on: February 27, 2015, 03:28:05 PM »
Starting an Avocado Farm on Kauai. So far there are about 50 avos planted, and there is probably room for another 200+. 

I have been collecting everything I can find, but I have exhausted all my resources. Wanted is scions (just a few pieces to graft). I am looking for named known varieties at this time. I can compensate for shipping, time, etc.  Let me know of a fair price or trade.  Scions can be shipped to Hawaii, and I will provide mailing instructions.

Here is what I am looking for:
Number   Variety
1   Beardslee
2   Brogden
3   Catalina
4   Crawford
5   Dailley11
6   Daisy Wilcox
7   Day
8   Donni
9   Dutton
10   GEM
11   Gottfried
12   Harvest
13   Helen
14   Itzamna
15   Jan Boyce
16   Kanola
17   Lila
18   Lula
19   Magoos
20   Marcus Pumpkin
21   Marvel
22   Nabal
23   Nimlioh
24   Obrian
25   Panchoy
26   Puebla
27   Queen
28   Russel
29   Simmonds
30   Wishard

Here is what I have already:
Number   Variety
1   Bacon
2   Beshore
3   Case
4   Choquette
5   Ettinger
6   Fantastic
7   Fujikawa
8   Fuerte
9   Green Gold
10   Hass
11   Hailey's Special (generic from KNL)
12   Hamilton
13   Holiday
14   Hulumanu
15   Ixtapan
16   Kahaluu
17   Lamb Hass
18   Linda
19   Little Cado
20   Malama
21   Mexicola
22   Monroe
23   Morita
24   Murashige
25   Nishikawa
26   Nogami
27   Ohata
28   Oro Negro
29   Ota
30   Pinkerton
31   Reed
32   San Miguel
33   Semil 34
34   Sharwil
35   Sir Prize
36   Summer (generic from KNL)
37   Yamagata
38   Yani


Tropical Fruit Discussion / How to make bananas sweeter
« on: February 03, 2015, 07:13:59 PM »
I grew a stock of apple bananas, and this particular variety I am growing and propagating is not as sweet as other apple bananas. Is the sweetness of the bananas dictated by the genetics or the soil amendments? Is there something that can be added to help them taste sweeter?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Low bearing coconuts
« on: January 27, 2015, 03:31:10 PM »
This is a colorful fellow from my island.

This is another passion of mine.... coconuts, especially Samoans....

Particularly got a laugh from the verbiage @ 2:20-3:00, but there is some serious info as well, interlaced with Kupuna stories. I respect his passion for the low bearing cocos.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Pug a mamey sapote
« on: December 09, 2014, 04:24:47 PM »
I have a grafted mamey sapote that does sporadically well. Its getting tall and leggy. Is it safe to pug it to keep it short?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Starfruit tree near house
« on: November 19, 2014, 01:12:13 AM »
I have a B10 Starfruit tree. If they are prolific as I have seen, is it a good idea to be near the house?

Near the house I can see being good for the continual harvest, but bad if its constantly shedding fruit on the ground that rots.

What is the general opinion?

Any other trees that are a bad idea to be near a house or walkway/driveway?

Citrus General Discussion / Help identifying citrus problem
« on: November 07, 2014, 03:58:01 PM »
I have this die off on several of my citrus trees. I cannot see anything except ants. The first thing that happens is the branch looses its leaves then the branch dies. The other branches are still alive. 

This particular one is a clementine mandarine

I need some hints!

Thanks in advance.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / micro graft
« on: November 05, 2014, 07:53:02 PM »
An old, wise friend was telling me about "micro grafts", his term for basically grafting a tree when the root stock is less than the diameter of a pen.

His basis was:
1.) It leaves no graft weakness
2.) It leaves no graft fight (where the root stock tries to outgrow the scion, leading to enveloping of the weaker material)
3.) It was easier to do since the plant material is virtually 100% cambium at juvenile stages
4.) There is a lot of energy at the early sprout of root stock, which means that once the technique is mastered it can have a high rate of success.

Arguments against
a.) When the rootstock is young its very hard to manage (flimsy when cutting)

I have been trying this theory out on some young avos, and indeed, argument a.) is very hard to manage making the cut into the root stock. He mentioned this being done on avo and durian... nothing else, but I didn't ask.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Decimated a tree
« on: November 03, 2014, 12:54:11 PM »
Was mowing down a hill and the lawnmower lost traction, slipped and ran over a young little cado....

Very depressed  :'(.... Ran over scooped up my little cado friend and grafted various branches of him onto about 5 rootstocks... .hopefully one takes :)

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