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Messages - JoeReal

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Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Achachairu question
« on: May 12, 2019, 03:32:11 AM »
I had it too!

Citrus General Discussion / Bark inversion tutorial
« on: May 12, 2019, 03:23:41 AM »
I have done this on many fruit trees not only citruses  and had excellent results.

I have successfully used it on citruses. It can control the growth of citruses without pruning and it induces early blooming for citruses grown from seeds. The major advantage is that the tree size doesnít grow vigorously and so you donít need to prune for about 4 years and then you do light trimming and another bark inversion again. You do this when you want to maintain the size of the tree, citruses specially because if you prune citruses, especially snipping off the terminals, you would have severe reduction in fruit production.

Bark inversion has been practiced by utility folks in Canada to maintain the roadside trees so they only need to prune the trees once a while instead of every year and saves a lot on labor.

Basically, you remove a ring of bark near the base of the tree on the main trunk, pull it out the ring of bark, turn it upside down and put it back and seal with parafilm. It reverses the polarity of the cambium in the ring of bark, limiting but not stopping the supply of nutrients into the roots. Without big roots, the tree remain small and so it concentrates the photosynthates into fruit production, improving the quality of the fruits. Similar in effect to mild girdling done on grapes or on selected branches of citruses.

Hereís a tutorial that I did to illustrate what Bark Inversion is all about. Make sure to read the descriptions on each picture as it has very good explanations and minor discussions about each step.

My Aravaipa avocado is showing growth during the winter when the Duke looked miserable but surviviny. My Aravaipa shows some growth during the hottest week of tge summer while Duke is suffering from the heat.

I have both of them grafted on one tree and so the comparison was very fair.

Try contacting these folks in Riverside.

They sometimes carry Garcinias such as the achachairu

Do I understand correctly that you're using your own selected rootstock? How many seedlings did you plant to arrive at one that "works"? Did you select with all of them in-ground?

All of my avocados are now on Duke Seedling rootstocks. All the ones that I got from the stores, and other seedlings that I have started resulted in dead avocado trees! 

The Aravaipa seedlings seemed to even be more promising and am trying it this year too!

Nice to see some success in my area. I'm actually pretty close to some GIANT duke's in oroville.
Did you plant in a mound or directly at ground level? I know standing water is a huge issue out here.

Always plant elevated from the ground in most areas of California. I recommend at least 3' x 3' x 1' high planter box (made of retaining wall bricks preferably).

A couple of years ago, I grafted all the cold hardiest avocados that I can find and so it has 7 cultivars with 5 type B and 2 type A flowers. Earlier this season, they bloomed almost together and there were plenty of bees and syrphid flies visiting the tree.

So now it has heavy fruit sets that I am tempted to thin out the fruits of our avocado tree! From the floor of the deck to the top of canopy, avocados of different sizes and shapes from 7 different cold hardy cultivars on one tree are becoming heavier and heavier, made the tree droop and spread. I worry that some limbs might break.

This is a young tree about 3-4 years old and this is what happens when you have both type A & B flowers bloom at the same time. The heatwaves are just starting so am hesitant to thin it out as many of them would fall off. Will try to brace the tree after another heat wave.

It was hard for me to get avocados going in my yard. We have freezes every year. Many avocado trees have died before I achieved this. Two major things why they died:

Rootstocks: all the rootstocks available from nurseries and big box stores donít like our water. Too much boron, too much salt, high pH. We also have alkaline soil, so they all die within a couple of years if they survived the cold.
Cold Hardiness: only a couple cultivars available from the same commercial stores are cold hardy but theyíll die if we got freezes colder than normal during the winter, such as wayward Arctic blasts.
So I researched and experimented with my own rootstocks, growing them from seeds of established trees of Northern California and then collected all the known cold hardiest Avocados of North America. And the result is this tree.

This winter, I have 100% germination rate of Aravaipa seeds and Duke seeds outside the house, in the yard, exposed to the elements, they're in plastic cups. Only the Aravaipa germinated during the winter while Duke germinated during early spring.

I'll begin to experiment on them as rootstocks!


Here's the story about the **Duke Avocado**
Part 1:

Part 2:

As I have already mentioned, the best rootstock for our area is from the Duke Avocado Tree. The seedlings can tolerate well water high in boron and salts.  I am suspecting the same for the Aravaipa so am excited to test them.

**Fantastic/Pryor Avocado** is green, paper thin skin, most cold hardy of all the Mexican avocados. The fruit
has a creamy texture with fantastic flavors. Eat skin and all. It is a vigorous growing beautiful tree. I am suspecting that the Fantastic avocado has similar genetics to Duke.

**Brazos Belle or WIlma**  is also a cold hardy Mexican avocado. The fruit is large and has a very good flavor. The skin is black in color.

Story about the **Aravaipa**:
Here's what I found out about the Aravaipa Avocado.

There's a special story about it in the Fruit Gardener which I recommend you'd subscribe if you're into fruit growing. It isn't publicly available as it is copyrighted but accessible via paid subscription.

There were many avocado trees planted in Arizona and elsewhere near the Mexico Border when parts of the US were still under Mexico, sometime in the 1700's and earlier. So it must be a long time of selection pressure for the various trial avocado plantings, by people freely coming in and out of Mexico and from Central and South America long before the US was formed.

In 1906, a rancher's family purchased the deed to his land in 1906 in the Aravaipa Canyon, now a Conservation Preserve in Arizona, and there was already a good size avocado tree growing in it. The avocado tree must have first sprouted or planted in the mid to late 1800's. The ranch is located at the bottom of a Valley, on a small mesa, just about 10 to 15 feet above the stream bed, and about 180 feet from the Aravaipa River. This means that during winter, very cold air from the mountains, being denser, would drain into this valley creating very cold freezing conditions, but the cold air would continue to drain down further into the river, away from the avocado tree, away from the ranch. According to the rancher, there are a couple of times or more that the entire mesa was flooded with 6-8 ft of water up to the trunk of the tree. Over the more than 100 years since their family acquired the land, the ranch had experienced many wintry snow storms, with regular winters of mid-20's and plummeting as low as 10 deg F. During the summer, the temperature regularly get several days of 120 deg F and sometimes weeks of temperatures above the century mark.

The tree must be at least 125 years old and survived it all to be the great and unique specimen that it is to this very day. What sets apart this tree from other cold hardy specimen is that it is both very cold hardy and heat tolerant. The tree is also salt tolerant, able to thrive in saline sodic soils of Arizona, and tolerant of root rot from the flooding and prolonged wet soils during winter. The tree just laughs off freezing events and continues to be very productive.

The tree is now regarded by Arizona residents as a Native Arizona avocado, and is related to Hass, a Guatemalan race, and avocado aficionados know very well that Guatamelan varieties typically have rough tough skins and are the most cold sensitive. So indeed this variety is truly unique in that it is very cold hardy and heat tolerant at the same time. Hass will simply burn in very hot summer temperatures or die out or severely damaged after a few frosty nights during winter.

The cultivar is just starting to become popular. In my quest for having a fruit bearing avocado tree in North California, I seek out and added this to my collection. Thanks to my friend Harvey Correia who first told me about the story of the Aravaipa and let me take a cutting of it from his tree.

One of the drawbacks to its adoption is that some say it only tasted mediocre. Most people don't want anything that isn't at least as good tasting as Hass. Julie Frink, a revered avocado guru, wasn't impressed with its flavor and at best considered it mediocre. But for our area, being mediocre is preferable to having no avocados at all. The current ranch owners of the original Aravaipa tree told that the taste is really delectable when harvested and properly ripened, and they had more sampling of the fruits than anyone else. As for me, one sample isn't enough especially if you're tasting many other avocados. A sampling through time of various harvest dates and ripening period is the best gauge for evaluating the quality of the fruits. Also the age of the tree has tremendous effect on the fruit quality, just like old vines making better wines than newer vines. I learned that as a winemaker long time ago, that you'll have to bring wine across its journey through time, and one bottle isn't enough. Flavor quality changes through time. Sometimes a slight modification in the "curing" or storage of avocados can dramatically change their flavor profile, and we don't have a clue on how to handle Aravaipa Avocado, such as optimum harvest and storage time.

I hope to get a lot of fruits this year. So I hope to evaluate it properly for my personal recommendations. Regardless of taste, it is a must have variety, at least for me as I believe that it would surely be a good source of excellent rootstock just like the Duke, that are able to tolerate salt, heat, root rot, and very cold hardy.

Unlike the Duke avocado, the Aravaipa can be be ordered online and is often available. It costs more than the typical avocado tree from big box stores as the propagators don't have the economies of scale. But also be aware that there are two types of Aravaipa being sold, one is also sold as Arizona Avocado, and is the original Aravaipa, and the other one is sold as Don Juan which many said is not the original Aravaipa, but dual labeled as such. The Don Juan is said to produce better tasting fruits than Arizona, and so must be another cultivar and I have no idea about its cold, salt, heat and rot tolerance.

Here's a video link showing that the legendary tree exists. The family who owns the ranch and the original tree has invited one of the promoters, propagators and sellers of the Aravaipa avocado. The exact location of the ranch and the tree can't be disclosed to respect the owner's privacy.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Hoop house
« on: May 10, 2019, 02:19:06 PM »
Heres the current state of the project.  The door is going up and then it will be time to cover it.  There is no rush since its 95F here today.  Just trying to take my time and do it right the first time.

We do not get frost here but we do get into the mid 30s a few nights a year and also have extreme heat and low humidity in summer.  The HH is equiped with a fan that can replace the air every minute and I am thinking aluminite shade will go over the outside during summer to regulate temps.  The goal is to provide a more moderate environmwnt for my young potted plants and a for fun plants like coffee etc.  Warmer and dryer in winter and cooler more humid in summer.

This would be a good opportunity to try out ground source heating/cooling system. Basically lay down big air pipes around your greenhouse or adjacent field, at least 6 ft down. It will utilize the ground as your heat source and sink providing fresh air of constant temperature come summer or winter, or whenever the thermostat requests it. Only the power consumption of an air blower.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Introduce Yourself
« on: May 10, 2019, 01:43:17 PM »
Glad to have found my old friends at the old citrus forum. Would be glad to meet new friends and fellow enthusiasts here.  I copied my introduction at another fruit forum, but they don't deal with tropical very much. This I think would be a better fit forum for me because I am into many things extraordinary or turn ordinary things into extraordinary. Would be glad to share more about my various backyard experiments. The pics are meant to update my old friends as to what I've been up to through all those years.

My wife and I in our family friend’s persimmon orchard near Yuba City, California.

Gleaning some persimmons from our friend’s orchard. He intentionally left us trees with fruits enough to fill a 40-footer truck.

My winemaking partners in our partner’s vineyard. We grow different kinds of grapewine varietals.

Destemming the grapes at the winery.

Winemaking is just one of my many jobs and I love my wine research work. We are required to drink on the job for the sake of research! I don't get paid to make wines.

We win awards for our unique wines fermented from fruits and grapes, not infused, but real fermented fruits.

Meet Edgar Valdivia, a CRFG member, I made dragon fruit wine for him and it won Best Of California Award at the state fair. When I have the time, I accept requests to make wine for my friends, and the only thing that I require is we split half the wine before bottling.

Meet two of our three kids… Our youngest son is an excellent music composer and our daughter has just graduated college.

I love fishing… so share with me your secret fishing spots for a bottle of excellent tasting fruit wine!

I’m an electric car enthusiast. I'm the world's number 1 VoltStats Hall of Famer for now. I get 1,987 mpg with my Volt, drove it for 81,000 miles in 2.5 years and only used 30 gallons of gas, with 24 gallons provided for free by the dealer, so only really bought 6 gallons of gas! I love the concept of the Voltec drivetrain, I don’t have to plan any of my trips around charging stations, I have no range anxiety, and I attain 97.6% of my total mileage in electricity from the sun from our paid-off electric panels. My driving is free fuel most of the time.

I regularly donate blood and platelets, while working my main job as a software developer.

I also volunteer to help graduate students do some challenging grafting for their research towards thesis.

This is my favorite tree, this pic shown when it had 130 different cultivars on it, with about 30 different types of prunus species and their hybrids. The shirt was given by my kids on Father’s day, and the legend portion is supposedly hiding below the belt, not the multigrafted tree. It is now a 160-n-1 stone fruit tree spanning 32 different types of species and their interspecific hybrids.

My wife and I are both outdoors folk, attending our oldest son’s wedding in San Luis Obispo Botanic Garden

I grow most anything that captures my interests... Something that I can grow without using a greenhouse. I have about 200 different kinds of stone fruits with 160 of them grafted together in one tree, 101-n-1 citrus, 12-n-1 Feijoa, 24-n-1 fig, 6-n-1 mulberry, 8-n-1 blueberry bush, 8-n-1 cold hardy avocado, tropical guavas, 12-n-1 persimmon, 12-n-1 cherries, multigrafted peaches/apricots/nectarines/nectaplums/apriums/plumcots,  apple/pear/quince multigraft, many diffferent kinds of pomegranates (some are multi-grafted too),  papayas (babaco, mountain and tropical), cacao, coffee, CORG, lucuma, Java plum, white sapote, bananas, dragon fruits, goumi,  jujube, loquats, pineapple. Recently acquired Luc's Garcinia and the regular achachairu for indoor growing, and see if I can make them bear fruits... I have fresh fruits year round from my itty bitty teeny tiny urban yard.

I'm happy to meet all of you too! Drop by anytime for free tasting from whatever fresh fruits I have. I have fresh fruits all year round from my yard. And out of season fruits beautifully served inside a bottle, the fruit wine tasting, free tasting for fellow members! Fruit wines you’ve never tasted before, once in a lifetime you should try. And of course, some regular grape wine varietals too!

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Meyer lemon, why?
« on: May 10, 2019, 12:48:57 PM »
I like them for lemonade and using in deserts like lemon bars. Very prolific too. Not a substitute for a regular lemon though if that’s what you mean

As for me, I don't like some of the hints of its aroma, when I first slice it open, it's like there's a squashed up cockroach next to it. Some chefs go crazy over them though. The rind actually isn't very bad at all and is good for zesting. And I managed to win a Gold Medal for its wine. I managed to remove the nasty aroma during the winemaking process.

I only maintain a small branch of it on my lemon tree which is composed of ten different kinds of lemons.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Joe...
« on: May 10, 2019, 12:44:07 PM »
Hey Folks! Am back! Thanks for hunting me down and inviting me over! I missed you all!

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