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Messages - roblack

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Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Watermelon
« on: August 16, 2018, 09:57:08 PM »
Thanks Brad, ordered orangelos and other seeds yesterday. Might be a bit late in the year, but going to give it a try. Next year will start on-time.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Dispute with neighbor about fertilizer
« on: August 16, 2018, 09:49:35 PM »
Much of this is related to big sugar and the flow of nutrients into Lake Okeechobee, and then spreading from there all the way to the coast.   
You are somewhat understandably misinformed.
The sugar fields are south and below the lake level. Nutrient runoff from the watershed above Okeechobee comes down the Kissimmee river into the lake. When the lake fills up the Corps of Engineers opens gates and flushes the lake water down rivers east and west to the coasts.
It's a lot more complicated than that but the sugar farmers are easy targets for certain political interests.

Looking at this map (link below), I see sugar cane growers on the east and west sides of the lake. Also, driving back from Orlando the other day, saw plenty of sugar cane growing way north of the lake. While I'm not aware of the impact and magnitude of all the factors effecting this nasty phenomena, and can certainly be misinformed about some things, lots of the sugar cane growing is not just, "south and below the lake level."

The Everglades have changed, and are no longer the filtration system of the past.,-80564856,64216&tbm=lcl&ved=2ahUKEwjP1d77ifLcAhUNca0KHcGMA0UQtgN6BAgEEAQ&tbs=lrf:!2m1!1e2!3sIAE,lf:1,lf_ui:2&rldoc=1#rlfi=hd:;si:2425536914664675275;mv:!1m3!1d5971968.704790024!2d-81.67331966622544!3d23.911770776766417!3m2!1i941!2i614!4f13.1

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Dispute with neighbor about fertilizer
« on: August 15, 2018, 10:03:01 PM »
That had to be an awkward moment. I don't like anyone messing with me in the yard. Disrupts the tranquility.

To add to all this, FL is suffering from a terrible blue/green algae bloom that has been killing off wildlife and making people sick. Tourism likely has been taking a hit as well. Much of this is related to big sugar and the flow of nutrients into Lake Okeechobee, and then spreading from there all the way to the coast. People are getting riled up about it, so probably will be more confrontations like this taking place as folks express their frustrations.   

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Watermelon
« on: August 15, 2018, 09:44:27 AM »
Those are some amazing melons! Going to give orangelo a try, but not sure where to place. About how many hours of direct sun do the plants need to produce well?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Stolen fruit grrrr
« on: August 07, 2018, 11:22:58 PM »
That has to be frustrating. I can accept someone snagging a passion fruit or mango hanging over the fence, but coming up in the yard and confronting the wife is provocative.

Need a robot or drone that is motion activated. Like the Ring doorbell, but mobile. Thinking about one that not only detours fruit thieves and others with mal intent, but also rogue dog walkers fouling up the yard.

Wishing you and your family the best while you are deployed. Get home safe!

decent if you hand pollinate

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Alano fruit set
« on: August 03, 2018, 01:22:23 PM »
Thanks! It was planted in-ground as a 3 gallon about 2.5 years ago. Trimmed it down a few feet approx 10 months ago, before Irma hit. Its been flowering for 1.5 years, but hasn't held much fruit. 

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Alano fruit set
« on: August 03, 2018, 12:32:36 PM »
Thanks for the additional signs of ripening Rob!

Agreed, the scratch test can easily be overdone and can damage fruits. Getting better at determining ripe fruits, so relying on it less. Last SW picked, I thought it was ready, scratched for the 1st time and it was brownish, and picked. After a few days, it is now ready to eat. Doubt I'll get any though.

Alano tree. Hard to get a sense of the shape with the jungle behind it.

Alano fruit, going to be a while...

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Alano fruit set
« on: August 02, 2018, 09:38:48 PM »
Finding the right time to pick can be tricky. They don't change much cosmetically when ripe. Ive been lightly scratching the skin with fingernail and looking at the color beneath the top layer of skin. If it is green, not ready. When it turns brownish, time to pick. That has worked for Silas Woods at least.

Little fruits are set on my alano too, can't wait to try. Raccoons, opossums, or other critters beat me to the first ones, so the wait continues.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Aphids Alter Plant Chemistry
« on: August 01, 2018, 09:47:37 PM »
That was a great read Barath, thank you. To think plants can summon spiders to their aid; nature is awesome.

Appreciate the positive responses, was half expecting to be ridiculed for posting this, lol.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Aphids Alter Plant Chemistry
« on: August 01, 2018, 11:34:59 AM »

Found this interesting article about aphids changing/enhancing the sugar, organic acid, and amino acid content of plants. Got me to wondering, might some "pests" be good for our plants/fruits if kept in-check? Anyone have any experience or insight into matters like this?

Tropical Vegetables and Other Edibles / Re: Moringa oleifera
« on: July 30, 2018, 07:19:55 PM »
Growing moringa down here (11b). Does well. Cut the tree down to the ground, it comes back quick.

The beans are good, actually taste better than the leaves. Just throw the whole thing on the grill, then break open and season after it gets good and grilled. Or break them open and saute/fry the beans.

Have been adding moringa leaves, turmeric, and black pepper to the smoothies and popsicles around here. Kids can't tell. Lol, they eat healthy and have no idea.

It can cause cancer in the nose and sinuses as well. Think it usually involves those who work in sawmill like conditions.

They have avocado trees that size in 15gal pots at clausons for 70$


The most I've paid for a tree was $375 for a 45 gallon jabo.  Not sure if 375 worth of jabo fruit have been eaten off it yet, but it's nice to have a larger tree that keeps producing. For a slow growing jabo, buying larger makes more sense.

Agree that smaller trees, and certainly cheaper, would be better in your situation. Maybe you can find something reasonable in the 15 gallon range. Not sure about your area, but mangoes and avos grow fast here.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: What does pawpaw taste like?
« on: July 20, 2018, 04:07:33 PM »
Interested in growing pawpaw too. wondering if some varieties do better this far south.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: ID seedling ??
« on: July 19, 2018, 06:52:49 PM »
1st one looks like peanut butter plant to me.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Field of trees
« on: July 19, 2018, 09:54:46 AM »
Lots of green, those trees look happy!

What other fun might you have with this bucket truck?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Site Outage
« on: July 16, 2018, 08:33:19 PM »
happy to contribute cash and/or plants to our cause. great idea

Red Lady and Kapoho Solo are good.

I would try grafting Kari and maybe another variety or 2 onto your tree. Mix it up, add diversity, and increase your chances.

Getting 2 crops a year from Kari here in SoFl area. Has flowered and fruited since 3.5 feet tall, while in a pot. Now is in ground and produces nicely with no other known carambola around. No special care. Fertilized it once or twice over the past 3 years. It does get plenty of water and full sun for more than 1/2 the day.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Best tasting mangos of 2018
« on: July 09, 2018, 11:02:21 AM »
Finally tried Coconut Cream. Definitely my favorite this year. Wonderful mango, juicy and smooth texture, flavors were great and well balanced.

Maha Chanok is probably #2 for me. Must've been the right time, because it was amazing and complex. 

Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / Re: Florida Mangoes for Sale
« on: July 05, 2018, 08:21:46 PM »
Received my box o mangoes on Tues. Very nicely packed, everything looked in tip top shape.

Just tried Guava. Definitely taste a guava flavor, especially close to the skin, but also throughout. Very good mango.

Waiting on coconut cream, orange sherbet, LZ, PC, and maha.

Very happy, will be ordering again. thanks!

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