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Messages - simon_grow

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Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Mango Reviews
« on: Today at 08:32:32 PM »
Satya, Squam256 or anyone else sample a J12, Orange Essence or Pineapple Pleasure this year? Satya, I canít get enough of your videos, keep up the great work!


Nooooooooooooooo!!! Lol!


Thanks everyone, the three trees are sold. I may have a few more including some Annonas like Leo Hybrid #3, Rudy #20 Cherimoya and a couple mangos. Cheers,


Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / SoCal mango trees for sale
« on: May 23, 2020, 11:57:54 PM »
I have a few mango trees for sale that are grafted onto California grown and vetted mango seedlings. I grow my seedlings outdoors unprotected through at least one Winter to vet them. Some seedlings are just weak and grow too slowly or succumb to disease or the cold of Winter. I only keep the strongest and most vigorous to use as rootstocks.

Some of these grafted trees are part of my experiments with different rootstocks so it would be great if you can report back every once in a while with a status update.

First tree is a CAC/COC tree grafted onto White Pirie seedling for $100

Second tree is Orange Essence grafted onto Fruit Cocktail seedling for $100

Third tree is Sweet Tart grafted onto Fruit Cocktail seedling for $100. Here it is holding fruit and after panicles removed.


I have been asked by multiple members if I had any ST trees grafted onto CA rootstock so Iím considering selling a few trees but I canít ship them.

Sweet Tart is one of those more vigorous varieties that performs ok on Florida Turpentine rootstock, especially if you Want to keep it relatively small in a container.

Kent is a great rootstock but I recommend forum members to plant as many different varieties as possible because everyoneís yard and soil conditions are different so by planting with a greater genetic diversity, you will have a better chance of finding a particular seedling that performs better at your specific location.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Mango Reviews
« on: May 23, 2020, 01:59:59 PM »
I have been eating mangoes for breakfast, lunch and dinner for last few days and decided to make review videos. These are mangoes sourced from different places , plus mangoes collected from ZHPP were picked immature and did not ripen to their peak taste so the comparison is not doing justice to the varieties.

Zill , Kryptonite, Dot mango -

Lemon Zest, Lemon Meringue, Butter Cream and Rosigold -

Juliette, Taralay, Sweet Tart, Venus -

Fruit Punch, Bailey's Marvel and Butter Cream again -

Valcarrie, Pina Colada, Sweet Tart -

I just watched your first video and loved your detailed description of the fruit characteristics. Thanks for posting those wonderful videos. I felt your flavor descriptions were right on point with all three varieties. Just a side note that I also noticed a green spot on my California grown Venus which is related to the K3 if I remember correctly.


We like to vet the seedlings through one winter whenever possible. Some seedlings are just inherently weaker or more prone to disease and by grafting seedlings that have gone through a SoCal Winter, we are able to weed out the weaker stock.

Iíve also had great luck with direct seeding mango seeds into the ground. These are usually very vigorous because there is not transplant shock. I sometimes go against my own advice and graft them when they are too small because i have scions available and donít want to toss the scions.

The good thing about starting them in pots is that you can move them into your garage or greenhouse in Winter and you can also root prune your trees to create a more dense root system.


Here are some updates to some seedling mangos that Brad and I planted at the orchard. We initially planted a bunch of Florida trees because they were already purchased before Brad and I partnered up but most eventually died and the few remaining trees are either stunted or so droopy and diseased that were probably going to just pull them all out if Brad hasnít already done so.

These are some seedling trees, some from Polyembryonic seeds, some from Monoembryonic seeds. The seedling trees tend to have a nice, upright structure that is not droopy. Most these trees are only a year or two old, I think the biggest one is 2-3 years old.


Here is more info on tree roots. This article talks about facts and common fallacies regarding tree roots.


I would stay away from Julie and Ice Cream because they grow at a snails pace and can have disease issues. I know you said you said you are keeping it in a pot in a small yard but I would still recommend you grow a vigorous variety because Mangos grow relatively slow here in SoCal.

By growing a vigorous variety, your tree will be better able to outgrow disease issues which we normally encounter in Winter and early spring. If you purchase a grafted tree. It will flower in its first or second year and the extreme precocity will cause a self dwarfing effect.

Iíve had a Pickering mango on Florida Turpentine rootstock that was planted into the ground and it actually did ok and produced some fruit but even in ground, it grew very slow and was very droopy.

The droopiness is caused by the heavy flower panicles which form every Winter and this causes the branches to be exposed to the sunlight which in turn causes sunburn damage and an entry point for pathogens. This will happen regardless of what rootstocks it is on but if you planted a vigorous variety, you can prune away downward facing branches and keep the upward facing branches but with slower, dwarf or condo mangos. The growth rate of vigor may not allow for additional vegetative growths due to the inherent nature of slower growing varieties, especially in our climate.

Sweet Tart is a variety that I would recommend. It is considered vigorous in Florida but most grafted varieties grow much slower here compared to when grown in warmer climates. I recently posted pictures of my small sweet Tart trees grafted onto California rootstocks that are only about 12 inches tall and holding fruit.

I can see you being able to keep a grafted sweet Tart in a pot for several years, keeping it at around 3-4 feet tall and just as wide with little effort. It will take probably 2-3 years just to get your tree to this size but once it reaches this size, you can easily maintain it at that size and it should be productive because of its disease resistance.

At the size stated above, you should reasonably be able to expect about 1-10 fruit annually with probably 5 Fruit being a realistic average in year to year production. Sweet Tart has been reported as being alternate bearing so you may get few to zero fruit after a good year.

It is easy to stick a mango tree in a pot and call it good but if you want to maximize growth, have a healthier tree and start harvesting mangos sooner rather than later, I would recommend you root prune your tree and ensure you use a good quality soil that is fast draining.

I canít emphasize enough how important it is for the health of your tree(especially when potted) to have a dense, heavily branched root structure that will anchor it better in the soil and to help your tree uptake more nutrients and water.

I could type a lot more info about this but Dr. Whitcombs video will save me a lot of typing.


Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / Re: Sugarcane cuttings cheap
« on: May 18, 2020, 03:00:08 PM »
The San Diego Yellow grows larger and more vigorous. Both varieties are very sweet with Brix over 20% if cared for correctly, I have their Brix numbers somewhere.

The Asian Black is a much softer cane that is easier to peel and is recommended for eating out of hand/chewing due to its soft nature and excellent taste.

The San Diego Yellow also has excellent flavor but the fibers hold together better making them more difficult to chew but significantly enhances the ability to run the Sugarcane through a Sugarcane machine. I have grown about 8 or so different varieties of Sugarcane and only kept these two varieties as the best in each category of chewing/juicing canes.

The Asian Black Sugarcane is also highly decorative and can be compared to certain varieties of ornamental bamboo.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Multigrafting Mango Trees
« on: May 18, 2020, 02:46:42 PM »
Jake, you may be interested in this thread. There are pictures.


Frank, you were one of the pioneers that got me interested in Mangos and without your guidance and introducing me to other pioneers in the Mango world, I probably wouldnít even have a mango tree in my yard right now.

You have vast knowledge of Mangos, Annonas and other fruit trees and I greatly appreciate all the recommendations and advice you have given me over the years.

The Florida Turpentine rootstock trees do have a purpose. For example, people that donít know how to graft can purchase a Florida tree and not have to worry about learning how to graft. Also, for me personally, I purchase Florida Turpentine rootstock trees when there is a new variety out and scions arenít available. I keep my Florida trees in pots and grow them out to use for their scions. My last Florida tree I purchased was a Cotton Candy.

Hopefully everyone out there with Florida trees will be successful with them but if you are not, donít give up. Try planting various random mango seeds from fruit you eat at the supermarkets and hopefully some will grow vigorously for you.

I highly recommend growing out seeds of the following varieties: Sweet Tart, NDM, Orange Sherbet, Valencia Pride, Kent, Haden, Tommy Atkins, Manilla/Ataulfo/Champagne.


No back tracking from me, let me start a list of posts that have date stamps and my exact words.

First, a discussion on rootstocks with some links to some good scholarly articles on Mango rootstocks.

Hereís a big piece of the puzzle, please note reply #2 on this thread below.

I could continue this on and on as I save my posts but the reason why I started all these topics is to help myself and other Mango growers out there successfully grow Mangos in SoCal and hopefully elsewhere.

I have spent countless hours writing up my posts, always trying my best to collect as much data before posting a topic. I gladly invite constructive criticism but will fiercely defend myself if I know someone is accidentally or purposely misinterpreting my words.

My hope is to improve Mango production in SoCal and I hope to be part of the solution by finding out what the primary issues are and how to circumvent them. We should be spending our time working together and gathering more data.

Iíve stated this many times before but Iíll say it again, specific varieties of Mangos grow fine on Florida Turpentine rootstocks, namely the more vigorous varieties like VP, LZ, Sweet Tart, etc....

There have just been too many members sending me personal messages to ignore the fact that many of the Florida trees eventually succumb to some issue or disease and die. Iíve literally answered hundreds of pms of members that send me pictures or give me descriptions of their dying trees and how to save them.

That is the reason I started the thread on how to grow Mangos in SoCal.

Itís been crazy home schooling my kids and working full time and helping out at the orchard but when I have time, Iíll update the post with more recent info.


Perhaps some of Patrickís combinations will work out for you


Letís not get words mixed here Frank, if you read through my posts, youíll find out that I actually use Leoís Turpentine fruit as rootstocks.

As I mentioned before, there are many different kinds of Mangos that are called ďTurpentineĒ. Typically these Mangos are vigorous and seem more tolerant of salinity. These Turpentine trees typically form smaller fruits that often form in clusters on the panicle. The fruit is typically fibrous but some actually have excellent flavor.

I posted pictures of Leoís Turpentine Mango fruits several years and he says they work great as rootstocks and that is why I have tested them and they perform great, just like most seedlings.

Iím willing to bet that if we were given Florida Turpentine seeds and planted them in SoCal, they would grow great here.

I hypothesize that something happens to the trees in the containers, perhaps some of the trees that are being sent to us is pot bound or they get acclimated to the warm weather in Florida and triggers something on the genetic level that makes it struggle when planted in our cooler climate.

Hereís what I wrote another member:

Turpentine seeds work great as rootstocks as long as theyíre not already grafted and containerized. I actually use a different Turpentine rootstock from Leo Manuelís tree as rootstocks. There may be genetic factors that are triggered by Floridaís warm weather and then when those trees reach SoCal, it is difficult for the trees to acclimate to the cooler weather.

The more vigorous varieties perform fine on Florida Turpentine rootstock. They still have some dropping issues and also get gummosis however.

Iím willing to bet that Florida Turpentine seeds planted in SoCal will grow great as long as they are planted as seeds of ungrafted seedlings and have not been potbound.


After many years of observations and contacting countless numbers of members of this forum, the few people that were able to have good success with Florida Turpentine rootstock trees were better able to understand the particular growing conditions that mangos require.

This is a very very small minority of the people on this forum from SoCal. These people tend to have better soil, foliar feed and know not to overwater, especially in Winter.

I can post multiple old threads where I compared Florida trees to seedlings but the responses I received from all the larger orchard owners that I have helped over the last decade is proof enough. I have personally killed too many Florida Turpentine rootstock trees and all my trees that are performing well are seedlings that I Grafted over.

Take a look at Leo Manuelís huge seedling trees and compare them to his approximately 20 year old Florida trees and it will be clear.

Brad and I also planted out a bunch of Florida trees, most were purchased before I partnered up, and now we are just ripping them all out because of lack of vigor, extreme droopiness and dead trees.


Yes, some varieties will grow fine on Florida Turpentine rootstock but many, many, many, many people have failed. You plant enough Florida Turpentine rootstock trees and youíll get a few to grow but the majority of people getting started with them will kill at least several trees that they paid top dollar for.

I want to point out to readers that there are different types of Turpentine trees out there and if grown from seed, they will probably grow fine. There is something about the Florida trees that make them super droopy, get gummosis and oftentimes die after 2-3 year. Often times, if you are able to keep the tree alive, it will stay very small.


Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / Re: Avocado fruit for sale
« on: May 15, 2020, 02:17:01 PM »
Save me two boxes, my coworkers have been waiting all year for this! Thanks,


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: dechlorinated water for jaboticaba
« on: May 15, 2020, 01:53:33 PM »
Another alternative to growing Jaboticabas in SoCal is to graft them onto Sahara rootstock. By doing this, I donít even have to acidify my soil. Sabara seems to adapt well to our soils and does not Si her as much as the red Hybrid. From what I have observed, Jaboticabas can Fruit fine in low humidity areas as long as they get enough water.


Hmm, thatís surprising! Just kidding, great looking trees. Yeah, it would help if you labeled the pictures. For those that arenít aware, itís not just Manilla rootstocks that perform well here, Kent, Haden, Tommy Atkins, VP, NDM, Sweet Tart, just about every mango seed I planted performs well but depending on your local microclimate, some varieties are more susceptible to diseases.


I probably wouldnít try anything like this in Florida. This tree has 5 scaffold branches below 10 inches from the ground and has about 16 secondary branches coming off the scaffolds. There are small fruits hanging on the branches now. I will remove the newly set fruit but if I kept the fruit on the tree, they will be sitting on the ground as they approach maturity. This will potentially lead to insect and vermin damage.

As the tree ages however, the fruiting wood will move higher and higher up the canopy so in the long run, this technique may help keep fruit within easy reach as the scaffold branches and in turn the secondary and tertiary branches are lower.


Iím no expert when it comes to growing Mangos trees in Florida but from my research, branches starting around 4 feet is beneficial for increasing air circulation and for allowing ample room to mow, mulch and fertilize. Allowing approximately 4 foot of trunk for the start of your scaffold branches also allows for any developing Mangos to be kept off the ground.

It would depend on the rootstock and grafted variety how much taller the scion grows but say you bark graft at 4 feet or you topped the tree at 4 feet and wait to graft the new shoots. The new growth may grow an additional 3 feet or so and if youíre lucky, it will bloom and set some fruit. As the fruit increases in size, the weight of the fruit may cause the branch to droop 2-3 feet or more. The fruiting branch will now be bent horizontally and the fruit will be off the ground by about 3 feet or so.

If the tree is very productive, you could have multiple fruit laden branches bent over and just off the ground several feet all around the tree, leaving you just enough room to work around the tree if youíre careful.

I was a big promoter of ultra low branching back when I first got started in Mangos but now I tell people to analyze the situation, be more dynamic and ask yourself how you see the final shape and size of their tree. If you are in an area with high bioburden or high humidity, the 3-4 foot rule works pretty good for Mangos.


Iíve only grafted a few Surinam cherries myself but they all took. I used young rootstocks and they budded vigorously beneath the graft union so I had to constantly monitor that and remove all buds below the Union. When grafting fruit trees, I often cut nearby branches that come oof the same branch that feeds the grafted branch in order to re direct more energy into the new graft.

Good luck!


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Five New Mango Trees!
« on: May 09, 2020, 08:16:05 PM »
I just picked up five new mango trees:

Cotton Candy
Orange Essence

What considerations should I take when deciding where to plant them?  Does any one of them do better in clay soil, for example?  Which are the more vigorous growers?  Which will enjoy more sun/shade?

I'll try to figure out how to post pictures here in a bit.  Thanks in advance!


Those are all great tasting mango varieties but taste is extremely subjective. Mangos love full sun and heat.

Because you purchased the Florida trees, I highly recommend you plant a bunch of Kent, Haden, Tommy Atkins and Manilla type seeds. Kent, Haden and Tommy Atkins are Monoembryonic and Manilla is Polyembryonic. I recommend you plant seeds from both types because everyone has slightly different soil conditions.

I have found that Kent seedling rootstock performs well in clay soil. Since you replaced your soil with good top soil, your Florida trees may perform ok but I highly recommend you plant seedling trees as back ups. Read through this thread.
DOT may have some disease and fruit retention issues in areas with higher humidity or around areas with stale air or low air movement


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