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I have some starfruit seeds I want to plant. What's the best way to do that? Plant a whole fruit? I know the fruit provides nutrients to the seeds.

NO, you want to remove the seeds out of the fruit.

 What soil should I use to start the seeds? Standard Florida sand? Mix with potting soil?

Suggest using a sterile potting soil.

 How often should I water them, and how long until they germinate?

Keep the soil moist till they germinate. Germination time depens on temperatures and light, but usually 2-4 weeks.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Wildlife in your fruit trees ?
« on: September 16, 2018, 05:41:14 AM »
I have hassles with flying foxes and cockatoos but lately I have had goannas stealing eggs and hassling the fowls. They have threatened me a few times in the last couple of weeks and I would prefer not to tangle with one when I am moving them along.I figure I have 4 regulars.

Australia definitely takes the cake for most bizarre animal encounters!

For those of you wanting to graft, i have the following lychee scion wood available:
Kwai mi pink (also called Bosworth 3), Kaimana, Salathiel, Wai Chee, Groff, Kwai Mi, Emperor, Bengal, Ohia, Yellow Red, Hanging Green (Kwa Luk), No Mai Tze, Amboina, Sweetheart
Go to for more information.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Maprang on Mango Rootstock
« on: September 15, 2018, 06:46:03 PM »
I haven't seen it, but according to a friend in Thailand it's routinely done there. Maybe there is some trick in getting it to take?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Eugenia candolleana
« on: September 14, 2018, 06:51:34 AM »
For anyone growing this tree (Oscar).  How big does th tree get?  Or is more like a big bush? Does the tree need constant water like on a drip line or can it be okay with regular rainfall and seasonal dry periods? 

Oscar how big/tall are your trees?
I planted mine very close together, like a hedge. That was before i traveled to Brazil and saw how large they can get! There at Rio de Janeiro botanical garden i saw trees with trunks that were about a foot diameter across, and height over 30 feet. But these were really old trees i guess. My trees are about 10 feet tall. They seem to be fine as a hedge as long as you prune them regularly. They seem to like a lot of water. Don't know how drought tolerant they are.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Edible fruit, ID please?
« on: September 13, 2018, 07:04:50 PM »
Some common names:Jamaican Cherry, Capulin, Strawberry tree. Wait until fruits turn red. Can eat whole fruit.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Mangosteen seeds germination help
« on: September 12, 2018, 10:49:15 PM »
Definitely not mangosteen. Yes looks like some type of annona. I guess it could have been worst and they could have sent you lentil seeds.  :D, like someone just posted about receiving from Amazon.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: New Fruit So-Shang Elaeagnus latifolia
« on: September 12, 2018, 10:43:43 PM »
Was the one Jared got a bit under-ripe, or are they all pretty sour/astringent?

Are there any superior/named varieties?
The taste and texture of soshan is very similar to a tart plum. If you have a tree ripened one there is zero astringency. If picked too early they will have a slight bit of astrengency, but nothing like an unripe hachiya persimmon level of astringency. So shan is really excellent juiced or cooked and made into a compot.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Rambutan Scions
« on: September 12, 2018, 01:35:09 AM »
Its going to depend a lot on how they are stored, wrapped, and handled. If you wrap them in grafting tape and store in cool area i would say 1-2 weeks. Ofcourse the faster you can graft them the higher percentage of take you will get.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: G.prainiana seeds
« on: September 12, 2018, 01:32:14 AM »
Yes they do resemble Prainiana seeds

Prainiana seeds do look different from other garcinia seeds, and certainly very different from regular mangosteen. The size and shape look about right. Only the color looks way too dark, but that's probably due to the medium they were in?
Here you can see what the seeds look like inside the fruit and get an idea of size and shape:

I had several of them in my property , they are one of the most invading species i've ever seen, fruit bats eat the fruits and spread seeds everywhere.
They manage to germinate and grow in pure limestone under the scorching equatorial sun.
Their roots are extremely long and can extend horizontally much much wider than canopy, forming a thick net of branched rootlets that can reach any other tree  avidly sucking water and nutrients.
I had several of them removed since they prevented other fruit trees to grow normally.
Some of them had roots longer than 30 meters (100ft).
By the way, any  root portion  exposed to the sun will promptly generate a new tree.
Look at this picture, these trees were born spontaneously from seed and are LESS THAN THREE YEARS OLD.....

Have had a fruiting tree for about 15 years. I was worried about them becoming invasive here, so kept a close watch on them. It seems the animals here do not spread them. I haven't seen any of the birds eating them. Even my chickens seem to steer clear of the fruits on the ground. No volunteer plants coming up anywhere. They do spread from the roots, and i've had to cut sprouts from roots about 35 feet away from mother plant. So that can become a problem if you do not keep up with pruning them.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Millipede in Jabo
« on: September 10, 2018, 06:28:42 PM »
Lots of millipedes here. The ones here are all broww/reddish colored. Never seen them damage seedlings. Yes they are like earthworms, breaking down all the organic matter.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Malaysia pilgrimage
« on: September 10, 2018, 06:14:07 PM »
Sounds like a great trip, a trip of a lifetime, Peter and Micah. Thanks for all the reports and photos Peter. Did you get to see the Tropical Fruit botanical garden in Penang. They had a pretty interesting collection and a food shop with lots of items made with the fruits.
Never been to Borneo, but would love to go. Definitely number one on my fruit safari list. Been trying to get Lindsay to do a Borneo tour for the longest time. She claimed maybe this December? But never got a definite from her.

I believe they need light to germinate.
Direct sun or just lots of indirect light?
After they germinate they can stay in the sun or they will sun burn(I doubt,but you never know)?
Direct sun, not indirect light. Will be fine in sun after germinating as long as they don't dry out.

Probably hard to see but I've been trying to get this to germinate for a while now... friday moved it to a window that gets full sun in the mornings instead of a window in my house that is tinted...and Bam! Germination!

You couldn't get them to germinate, now your gonna have 10,000 :)
Hopefully I have success with the yellow too....then I won't mind 10,000. :D

Do you think a strong grow light will work as well as sunlight?
Should work if you put the seeds in close to the light.

Hi, I have some Muntingia calabura / Jamaican Cherry seeds and am having a nightmare trying to germinate them. I have bought 2 different lots of seeds off ebay from two different parts of the world. So far to try and get them to germinate I have tried :

Putting them in a damp piece of toilet roll, wrapping in plastic and putting in a heated propagator
Putting in the soil  in pots in a unheated propagator in a greenhouse
Putting them under a grow lamp in a unheated propagator in a room that is generally 20-25c most of the time with grow light on 247
Putting them in a pot just under the soil sat under a grow lamp turned on 247 in a room 20-24c

None of the above work, so im wondering whether dried seeds are even viable for Muntingia calabura ?. As everything I have read they seem to sow the fruit and seed directly into the soil for the best result. Getting hold of fresh fruit in the UK is impossible from what I have found though.

I have found plenty of places in Australia, USA that sell the live trees but dont ship internationally.

I have  fruiting mango tree, a lychee and a avocado in the same 20-24c grow light area and they are all growing just fine, and will be transplanted to a tropical greenhouse we are building on a farm with 7 metre head height. Its all going to be heated for free by the waste heat from my brothers wood chip heating / wood kiln business that runs 247 365 days a year, so heating isnt going to be a problem in the long run, it will be like the tropics in there.

I have successfully germinated several types of guava, key lime, sugar apple, cheramoya, melon etc but Muntingia calabura is a nightmare.

The issue I have is getting the damn things to germinate in the first place, once they are growing we will have a perfect home for it, but getting hold of a seedling or seeds that actually sprout is proving very difficult.
Have you ever actually eaten the fruit? If I had a tropical greenhouse this space hog wouldn't be my first choice. They get big anda. fruit is the size of a garden pea Lots of fruit if the tree size is large but handfuls from a small tree.
Fruit size normally is much bigger than pea. More about the size of a penny.

Yes the seeds can be dried and will still be viable. But the ones i sell are fresh out of the fruit, so i use moistened vermiculite. I think the "secret" to growing them is putting them under full sunlight. If you look under a mother tree there are hundreds of fallen fruit and not one single volunteer seedling. This is a pioneer species that establishes itself only in full sun clearings.
The other "secret" is to not let the tiny seeds percolate down through the medium. So either bottom water them, or use a fine mist. You can also put them on a moistened paper towel. If you do it right you will get hundreds of them to sprout. Then just carefully transplant into a pot.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Which Pouteria is this ?
« on: September 06, 2018, 11:07:00 PM »
I think Mike T posted photos of the same fruit a few days ago trying to ID it. Doesn't look like any canistel i've ever seen here, but it's possible.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Salathiel, confirmation of the variety
« on: September 06, 2018, 05:23:06 PM »
Apparently Salathiel is an Australian version that is either same as No Mai Tze or a type of No Mai Tze. The No Mai Tze is considered in China as one of the best tasting cultivars. I have one Salathiel tree but it never fruits. It needs a good cold spell to induce flowering, which we never get.javascript:void(0);

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Seed ID help please
« on: September 06, 2018, 05:18:31 AM »
You definitely got gipped. Amazing what people do on eBay! Is there any way to report fraud by sellers on eBay?

Thanks for taking the time, I was hoping you'd reply.  Any idea what seeds they are?  Lentil??  Something else??

It was actually Amazon of all things, I knew the seeds are very short lived, so I was in such a hurry to get them in a seed starter that I didn't even give it any thought until the next day. 

I did email him and told him I knew they weren't mangosteen and asked what they really were.  I doubt I'll get an honest reply, but if I'm going to make a fraud case I just thought it would be best.

I'm just hoping they're at least something worth growing.  They actually sprouted in 48 hours, 24 of those in a glass of water. 

Again, thanks for taking the time to reply.
Yes they look to me like lentils.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Chempedek from seed
« on: September 04, 2018, 06:01:34 PM »
I'm eating champadeks from my trees right now. I call them champs because they are a real champ of a fruit.  ;D
If seeds are from premium fruits you will probably get good fruits, although it may not be totally identical to mother plant, depending on who pollinated it.
They will get large, although not as monstrously large as a jackfruit, but they are much slower growing. They are much more delicate than jacks, especially at high elevations. And as Mike mentioned, there is a problem with a mysterious juvenille die off. So do baby them, especially at first. I suggest putting them in a wire cage with a light shade cloth, like 35% or 50% to protect them from bright sun till they get about a meter tall. Also give them a slow release fertilizer as they easiy get chlorotic. It's a good fruit and worth the extra hassle and long wait. I especially like how easy they are to open and eat. Not the messy mess and laborious cleaning project like with jackfruits.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Kasturi mango ?
« on: September 04, 2018, 05:51:25 PM »
Has there ever been a hybrid cross with indica ?  that sure would open up a lot of possibilities.
Yes that would be the ultimate type of hybrid, to give mango total or partial resistance to anthracnose, and expand the growing areas to more  wet-tropical  climates. I think there has been very little work on this. Dr. Zee here explained to me that the mangifera flowers are very small, have to be hand pollinated, and very few set it is extremelly labor intensive.
I believe that Fairchild Garden's Richard Campbell and Noris Ledesma were doing some hybridization work? But i don't know the details?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Kasturi mango ?
« on: September 04, 2018, 05:46:39 PM »
Thanks Oscar.  I canít wait. Seems like a delicious fruit. Micah also mentioned that the fruits fall off the tree when they are ripe which kind of confused me. Cause donít regular mangos do that too?   He made it sound like the fruit was easier to harvest cause ait falls off when itís ripe. But wouldnít it bruise like a mango does?
You can pick them off the tree when purple, or wait till they fall off the tree. They don't break down like mangoes. If you will for a mango to fall it is usually moosh, or it is full of fruit flies, or full of bug, or bruised. The kasture is a lot more resilient. I can pick them up off the ground a few days after they fall and they are perfectly fine. I think that may be because they don't get the fungus (anthracnose), and are smaller, lighter, and harder to bruise. Also they don't fall when totally soft, they will still be a little bit hard textured.
I like them a lot. They have a very intense mango taste and smell that is very appealing to most people, and little fiber. But the biggest advantage is consistent fruiting in rainy climates.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Rambutan Fever in South Florida, USA
« on: September 04, 2018, 05:39:07 PM »
There was a presentation here many years ago by a rambutan crop specialist. She told us that the burnt edges is caused by either a) potassium deficiency (which is supported in the literature), or b) a type of virus that affects rambutan trees. Unfortunately the two problems have very similar effects on the trees and are hard to distinguish without a leaf tissue test. But she also said the probem is usually potassium deficiency and that the virus problem occured a lot less freguently.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Rambutan Fever in South Florida, USA
« on: September 03, 2018, 11:25:45 PM »
Slow-release Potassium for steady feeding.  Coated.
What kind of slow release pelleted potassium do you use?

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