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Messages - Pancrazio

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Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Mango trees in zone 9 - 8 ?
« on: March 13, 2012, 07:53:13 AM »
how far north have you seen mango trees and if poss the variety.

44N, Glenn!  ;D

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Identifing a dwarf mango
« on: March 11, 2012, 06:05:52 PM »
it looks like mini haden kind of.

Its not cogshall though.

what is flesh liike?

My first guess was a cogshall, but to be honest it was an hypotesis i had mainly because i lacked of better ideas. I must also admit that i don't have a good knowledge of the so called dwarf varieties. I dunno if i can get any taste review.

PS. this tree looks no older than 5-7yrs old.

Most mango trees of that age get more rugged looking bark on the trunk, with lichens, and algae.

I don't see these features indicative of a seasoned tree....looks like it was planted last year...from PIN.

I know Adam! But trust me, it is. The pictures in the second post are (at least) from 2005, the picture in the first post are from 2011. They have been posted on forums, so i managed to see the day they were posted. I also have seen a picture of this plant dating back the 2003, it was almost identical (with branches a bit smaller), so isn't hard to me to believe it is so old.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Identifing a dwarf mango
« on: March 11, 2012, 03:18:18 PM »
Yes, i'm saying that. 15 years (maybe one or two less, i dunno if the people i'm talking about has the exact year in wich he planted this - i'll ask if this can help). Usually i don't trust unbelievable anecdotes on the net, but this time i can assure you that the person who talked me about the age of the plant is completely trustworth. The explanation i gave to myself is either one of those two:
1) Maybe this is an already semi-dwarf cultivar made even tinyer by the environment (the cold winters of south italy - compared to florida, the rocky soil, the shadow casted from nearby trees): the discrepance between trunk girt and twigs can be because some branches died during all those years? I can't help about this: i have never seen the plant in person.
2) Maybe this is a true mutation, and maybe this person has a true dwarf cultiuvar (like dwarf peaches, or dwarf apricots).
Of course i may be completly wrong!

Just a couple of other pics

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Identifing a dwarf mango
« on: March 11, 2012, 02:20:18 PM »
Hi everyone.
I'd like the help of the people on this forum regarding the identity of this mango.

The owner of the plant is an user of an italian forum wich lives in the very south of italy.
The plant itself, showed in the pictures, is, according the word of the owner, 15 years old. The owner told me that this plant has been bought to him as gift from canary islands, and the buyers didn't care about taking the name of the plant, but i think that (maybe!) the name can be found in the list of the plant growed by ICIA (list below).
The picture has been taken during the night, so the color of the fruits isn't clear, but the owner has said to me that they are yellow with a red/purple blush. They weight about 600g (1,3 pounds). The plant itself have never had any fertilizer.
This is another pic of the fruit:

Do you have any clue?

ICIA list:

Ah Ping                             
Big Yellow                 
Bombay Green           
Davis Haden             
Golden Lippens       
Gomera-1, Manga Blanca   
Gomera- 4, Manga Fina   
Madame Francis         
Momy K           
Mun    (Nan Dok Mai)
Oliveira Neto       
San Andrés 1       
S Andrés  2           
Tommy Atkins       
Turpentine Gomera-3   
Valencia Pride     
Van Dyke     

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Brazilian export rules
« on: March 08, 2012, 05:47:02 AM »
That itself is not bad, but the problem arises when Monsanto's GM crop pollinates neighboring non patented crops in adjacent fields

I would also add the fact that, in the long run, this also steal from the people, the right to choose to eat something GMO or not. When all the crops will be contaminated what kind of sense the opposition of GMO will make?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Cereus peruvianus var. Monstrose
« on: March 07, 2012, 05:57:43 PM »
. I'm going to let the cutting sit out in the sun for a bit so the wound will scab over and then plant it.

Dunno about your climate, but i own quite some cactus, ad usually when i want to root cuttings i let them dry for a month in a light shadow. Full sun usually can dry smallest one too quickly, wich can slow the development of roots. Full shadow instead can be detrimental ro the drying of the cut, and can promote the growt of the cutting "out of the soil" with bad results.
After a month i put them in pure sand, and i water them very ligthly, maybe once every few weeks (the quantity of water that can be dried in a day). The water, if very moderate, can promote the growth of roots. Too much water instead will bring the plant to rot.
They usually root in the following weeks.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: MangoFang's Yard Update March 2012
« on: March 06, 2012, 06:54:32 AM »
Well, Gary, you have pretty much the garden of my dreams... I think you only need a "coconut cream" and a a ndm #4 to make it perfect to me! 

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Picked a Rollinia today
« on: March 05, 2012, 08:25:48 PM »
I'll bring up this issue here because it seems somewhat related, and i find it interesting (and in my previous formulation it was just a specific statement). Is there any annonaceae species wich can be grafted on asimina and get an increased cold hardiness in the process?

I have had some very good fruit from Opuntia ficus-indica, my favorites are the green ones (here they are called "bianche" which means white). They are both very sweet and crunchy. Hard to beat when chilled, in my humble opinion, during an hot day in august. I know that the numerous seeds are disliked by many peoples, but the taste alone, is, in my opinion, very good.
I haven't tasted many cactus fruit, aside from these, but the cactus family has usually very small seeds, so, excluded the pricky pears, they shouldn't be a problem.
Cactus anyway have some great advantages. At least in the south of italy they are effortless to grow (literally effortless). They don't need water. You can plant them in any arid soil and forget about them all year long, except for picking the fruits. And are easy to reproduce - very easy. They ship well.
Well, yes, i'm with you adam, i think they deserve to be grown more, at least in places with water shortage.   

Good question. I'd like to have this kind of information too.
Since my season is so short, i can't afford to try a new variety wich bears too late in the year. With this information i can concentrate my efforts of varieties that actually have a chance ripen their fruit here.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: fruit you are dying to taste
« on: March 01, 2012, 08:18:16 PM »
As, silly as it may seems, i'd like to taste a jackfruit.
I have found them canned, and i liked them. But knowing how much the canning process can change the flavour of a fruit, i woudln't say i have "tasted" them.
I'm hoping to get some fresh jackfruit, but here seems almost impossibile.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Mini Mango Seed
« on: February 28, 2012, 04:05:54 PM »
This is interesting. In the 2 fruits i grew here i found two of those "aborted" seeds. I assumed that they were unable to sprout, and trow them away. I also assumed that they were generated from low night temperatures, but apparently they aren't related to that?
I wonder if they influence the growt of the fruit someohow.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Potted lychee pruning
« on: February 28, 2012, 04:00:08 PM »
Thank you everybody. I'll try to upload a picture as soon as i can take one. Anyway i'm happy to learn that as for now there is no need to prune.

@simon_grow: i have checked lycheesonline, but i haven't been able to find what you suggest. :( Nevermind, anyway, my plant hasn't more of 3 feet in TOTAL. :)
I suppose that the point of not allowing it to have a bifurcation on shorter branches is to avoid wind damage. This isn't my case luckily: my city isn't windy at all and the plant are indoor in the months with the strongest winds.
I like your suggestion of putting weights on twigs to force them to grow where you whant. I think i'll do it. Maybe it's time to reuse my old copper wire used for bonsai? :)

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Potted lychee pruning
« on: February 27, 2012, 07:24:58 AM »
@lycheeluva: No, i don't have any pic. Not now, at least: it is still in greenhouse. The plant is very little (i'd say 3 foot tall) and the pot is little too (7 gallon? i really don't understand how translate litres with gallons, every converter seems to say different from each other; anyway the pot is 35 litres).
Ok so, i'll try to look what it does this year.

@frutilovers: Yes, it is a marcott. I dunno how old it is, i bought it in september, i simply was worried because the twigs have a V shape and i thought it needed some formation pruning.

Well, at least they seem to fruit nicely in pots. I'm so envious! How big are those pots? I can't realize that from pictures. Would be interesting to know, for me, that jacks can fruit in a pot of reasonable size (it's an old dream never abandoned).

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Error Message
« on: February 27, 2012, 07:12:24 AM »
Same problem here. Debian Linux as OS.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Potted lychee pruning
« on: February 26, 2012, 04:31:55 PM »
I have a young sweetheart lychee that seems willing to start growing after the winter.
The question is: how i should prune it? Obviously the objective is keeping the plant small, since it should stay in pot for his entire life.
I have seen a lot of video a heard quite a bit about mango pruning but now that i came to this little plant i realized that i haven't a clue about what to do.
Any suggestion? I know that we have here some avid lychee growers that for one reason or another are forced to keep their plant in pots... i'm seeking advice.

Recipes / Re: Florence Fennel and Oranges salad
« on: February 26, 2012, 04:12:38 PM »
Hi Oscar! You can use fennels for seeds (seasoning) and as vegetables. I didn't know, before writing this message, if there was a word in english to describe exactly the fennels used as vegetables. So i looked at wikipedia. And according to wikipedia:

"The Florence fennel (Foeniculum vulgare Azoricum Group; syn. F. vulgare var. azoricum) is a cultivar group with inflated leaf bases which form a bulb-like structure. It is of cultivated origin, and has a mild anise-like flavour, but is more aromatic and sweeter. Florence fennel plants are smaller than the wild type. Their inflated leaf bases are eaten as a vegetable, both raw and cooked. There are several cultivars of Florence fennel, which is also known by several other names, notably the Italian name finocchio. In North American supermarkets, it is often mislabelled as "anise"."

There is also a picture:

So i assumed that the word to describe fennels as vegetables was "Florence fennels"! Wrong assumption, it seems! :D

Anyway, this is exactly the kind of fennel you should use. Maybe may seems obvious, but you know, i didn't wanted someone using this:


Regarding proportions: i use a single orange, and a single raw fennel bulb. Ideally you may want it to make 50%/50%, but personal preferences have a role here. Personally, i find that a perfectly ripe orange goes marvellously well with salt, oil and fresh pepper, so i tend to use a bit more orange than fennel, but, as i said, is a matter of preferences. Let me know if you like it. :)

Recipes / Florence Fennel and Oranges salad
« on: February 25, 2012, 06:31:17 PM »
Fennel and Oranges salad

This is my favorite way of eating oranges during winter.
This recipe is used mainly in Sicily, but nowadays you can find good oranges everywhere in italy, and fennel is also widespread. Dunno, if it is used even in USA, but anyway... here it is.
This is very simple but as with everything very simple, the single most important thing is the good quality of your ingredients.
So, just take a florence fennel bulb,
one orange (i use navel oranges; the sweeter, the better),
olive oil (use the best olive oil you have, we use 2 kind of olive oil in every house here, and for this recipe i use the best),

Wash the bulb and cut it in little chips. Unpeel your orange and separate the segments, then break them by hand in 2 pieces. Try to keep the juice inside the segments, but is important that you break them by hand because a little of juice will give flavour to the fennel. Put salt and pepper. Mix everything with a fork. Put 2 tablespoon olive oil on it and mix once more with the fork. Buon appetito!

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Dekopon Brix Test
« on: February 24, 2012, 05:09:07 PM »
This is interesting. While it would take a bit of effort to do it regularly, i'd like to see some brix tests in future on the fruit you eat, if you don't mind.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Degree-Day
« on: February 24, 2012, 05:05:32 PM »
I agree with you Oscar.
Too bad we often see clearly where a result like 4) can be achieved (commercial orchards are pretty evident) but the other points often are largely anecdotal.
I think would be interesting to have a way to discriminate if a place is where you can achieve 2) or 3) with a given plant. Because a dedicate grower often can do thing to let his plant grow wich are absurd from a commercial point of view.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Dekopon
« on: February 23, 2012, 07:05:48 PM »
I don't want to hijack the thread, and a don't want to open a whole new thread for this silly question either...
Can someone give me a review on satsuma? I'm thinking about planting it, since is said to be a frost hardy citrus, but i'm not sure about the taste... i love fruits that are very sweet, and i have had some unpleasant experiences with mandarins before. So, if anyone has had a satsuma, how would you evalutate it?

The rarest fruit i grown isn't a tropical fruit but an apple. Is an apple that was grown here in 1600 (but may be older). Anyway this cultivar is almost extinct. There are like 150 plants in total. About ten years ago there was just 1 plant. Ironically it was widespread here during last centuries, but since then the market has changed a lot and the growers have lost interest in it. Its main virtues are the ability to repel pathogens without any kind of treatment, its ability to keep tasty for months without the aid of a refrigerator (form october to april), its high level of polyphenols and, of course, its sweet taste. But aside for the taste, the other two qualities aren't so useful nowadays. And this apple sin't spectacularly big either. Anyway i think it is a beauty.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Degree-Day
« on: February 23, 2012, 06:32:37 PM »
An interesting question for those who lives in a place where plants need to be kept indoor during winter is: "Will my plant fruit here?"
Usually we assume that if a plant can be grown outside without a cover, or a very minimal one, it can fruit.
But some calculation can be done for those who a forced to use a pot, taking in account your climate data (average max and min temperatures for each month). So, if you have those data, even if you don't have a first hand experience of someone tring to grow something tropical in your zone, you can calculate if something can produce mature fruits where you live.
I found this extremly interesting and useful when i tried to understand if mangos were able to fruit here (if you are curious, i just have the bare minimun requirements).
Unluckly anyway, for mangos there is a great lack of datas. The most important one is the total value of degree-day, while the base temperature, if you lack more precise datas, can be assumed at 12C (54F).   
Anyway, for those interested, this is how this method works: It is called "Degree-Day".

This site allows you to see the "degree day" for your specific location. Just choose "cooling" to see the accumulation ABOVE the base temperature (this tool was inteded for energy management):

This study gives some insight on how it works for commercial orchards.

If people keep track of the day of the flowring of their mangos (and the day when the fruits are ripe), over several years they can calculate the required degree-day for that cultivar.
I hope this useful for someone.


This a taxonomical renaming. Very different than a nursery deciding willy nilly to change the name of a cultivar.
At least taxonomist announce their changes and let you know what all the previous synonyms were.

Agree. In addiction botanist abide to a very strict code called "international code of botanical naming" wich has predictable rules for almost everything. Anyway the botanist work is so tought that i won't complain for any mess they can do. Have you ever withnessed the situation of european oaks? Many species, wich live in same area, wich freely hybridize one with another.... you have a species with hairy buds, another with buds withour hairs, and ALL the intermediate situation between those two extremes... naming such things is a nightmare, considering that that thing isn't limited to one character.

On sweetheart issue, in my humble opinion, is the law that shouldn't allow to trademark a cultivar name. From my point of view, a trademark is useful because let the consumer choose between different products, and let him recognize the products of the companies wich already have satisfied his needs. This works well for, say, organic vegetables (wich can be grown in many ways, each own with advantages and disadvatages) and shoes. But is the sweetheart tree sold by company A in any aspect different from the sweetheart tree sold by company B? Well, basically the whole thing behind choosing named varieties is that there ISN'T such difference. So where is the point in trademarking a cultivar name? This won't help the consumer choose a good product from a company he trusts, because all the products with same name are the same thing! If we were talking about patents obviusly it would have been another matter.

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