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Messages - Mark in Texas

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Genetic Diversity of Mexican Avocado in Nuevo Leon, Mexico

That's where my friend's friend lives - state of Nuevo Leon.  I noticed some of the improved creoles is what he's growing. 

I would think that if they grew, shipped, and warehoused well, had a good meat to seed ratio, they would be grown in place of Hass. 

Citrus General Discussion / Re: clay soil amendments?
« on: Today at 07:55:40 AM »
Plant the trees in the soil you have. Use PT/FD for your rootstock and they will thrive with good care. Clay soil is not a bad thing....lots of citrus do well on it.

Especially if it's sour orange rootstock which what you probably get in La.


The season starts in July and there are many native varieties. There are seeds that are really big but we can try to get you some

Curious, do you know this avocado grower in Mexico?  He grows the typical criolo varieties, all are named varieties.

The egg of the bull might just be the shape and size. After all, the original word for avocado is 'testicle'.  Nahuatl name for the indigenous avocado fruit is āhuacatl, that also means “testicle.”

That would be interesting... All those cultivars.  All of the avocados that the US have were originally smuggled in from other countries, mostly from South America and Mexico. The endemic ones were from seedlings of the smuggled ones of ancient days. When US was not yet formed, people from Americas moved about and brought with them plants and animals. Of course those that have established avocado orchards wanted protection.

I don't know of any existing quarantines on avocados, since they're not a major agricultural crop of the US.

You know your testicles well. ;)  Mexico is a bit weird regarding bringing avocados back across the border.  You can do it but for some strange reason the vendor must remove the seed upon the sale.

Here's one Mexican avocado grower in case you do Facebook.

This Texan lives near San Antonio and has quite a few videos including taste tests of varieties he grows.  Does very well with the Tex-Mex avocados some growing as big as 30'.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Avocado 24/7 Thread
« on: May 24, 2019, 11:04:21 AM »
Here in northern California my meyer has light crops most of the year, heaviest being around summer and early january?

Twice a year?  If I want my Meyers on the tart side I harvest a few in Dec.  If I want them fully ripe I harvest in March.  They store well. Just grabbed one from the fridge and cut it to make a drink.  Was in perfect shape.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Geodesic dome greenhouse build
« on: May 24, 2019, 10:24:28 AM »
My experience with polycarbonate, wood, and tape/sealants is that water will find a way and you will have leaks you cannot avoid.  Even manufactured double-pane vacuum-sealed windows leak sometimes.

Yep.  Only way to do this is double walled polycarbonate resulting in less light and plants that tend to be leggy and may not fruit well.

Otherwise he needs to go with single and cough up the bucks to heat it.  I would assume that gas heating would be the cheapest with controllers.     

First I did research on where the cold hardiest oldest trees are found and when they bear fruits. So during the fruiting season, I looked at the forecast if it is windy. If that afternoon to evening is windy, I schedule a very early morning trip to those trees and then pick up their fruits from the ground. Most of these trees are in public parks and if on private properties, some of their branches extends to the roads and so I pick up the fruits, and I ripen them, got to taste them too, and then use their seeds as rootstocks.

Now I have many cold hardy avocados grafted on to those seedling rootstocks and as they bear fruits, I use the seeds to experiment if they make excellent rootstocks. I usually started them by germinating them during the winter on potting media, and left outside. I have produced many cold hardy seedlings this way. I will have plenty to experiment from my first generation fruits.

Damn, that's what I call passion.  Good on ya!   If I wasn't getting too old for this chit I'd reinvent the wheel with Nuevo Leon and Oxaca Mexican Criolo avocados, growing and selections. I have a connection thru a friend who knows a Mexican avocado grower who grows and sells varieties of the old landrace Mexican cold hardy Criolo avocado trees.  He's offered my friend scions.  i backed out of her request to graft different named varieties due to the risk of customs and other issues such as disease/insect contamination, which I guess you could get around with a quarantine drill.  She would basically have to smuggle them across is what she's telling me.  Here's one such avocado hanging from one of his trees.  These Mexican and Guatemalan avocados come in all shapes in sizes from ping pong ball size to 2 pounders.

Here's a partially censored variety script he sells beginning with the words "Tengo...." aka "I have....."

I wonder what his "egg of the bull" variety tastes like.   ;D

  I've heard nothing but good things about the Mexicola.

Im here to say bad things about mexicola. My mexicola has a date with my chainsaw coming up.  :)

You're spoiled and with what perfect conditions you have I don't blame you a bit for being damn choosy.  It's been reported that an old Mexicola in one of the southern states took 5F and survived.

I guess everyone has their preferences for rootstocks.  I found the typical Florida Slimcados, the W. Indies X Guatemalan hybrids like Monroe, to be extremely vigorous and accepting of scions.  My original trees done back in 2012 are on those stocks.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Avocado 24/7 Thread
« on: May 24, 2019, 09:08:12 AM »
This is the very first fruit production of my ‘Oro Negro’ Avocado variety. I would describe it as a heavy production; I decided to get this variety because I have often heard Carlos (the Avocado Expert) favorably mention it. | (Photo Date: 05-16-2019)

Nice looking tree!

Even though I'm growing in a greenhouse before the big freeze my ON was a heavy producer.  Fruit isn't up to the quality of SoCal fruits but it's still worth planting.  With the freeze die back it now hosts Lamb Hass, Pinkerton, quite a few Sharwil grafts/branches and if all goes well the Jan Boyce will take.  Grafted late last year it's now 7' H X 8' W.

Here's a few in March 2017 with some Meyer lemons.  Apparently you folks in S. Florida start harvesting early winter.  Mine weren't ready until March.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Cutting the Top Off (Mango)
« on: May 24, 2019, 08:59:13 AM »
So if I understand I should cut the main branches 10 inches in?

I really appreciate your support

Depends on what you're trying to do.  With my LZ I wanted the permanent scaffold branches to start low so I cut above the first node.  I ended up with what I wanted - 7 permanent scaffold branches to build on.  See my link.  Those in Florida may want more airflow near ground level and may choose to get those lower branches off the ground.

I start or train my peach trees the same way. The first scaffold branches are about 18" above the ground.  They're also almost horizontal.  January dormancy.

Here's another technique you mango growers ought to play with - a single espalier profile without the wall aka a single perpendicular profile.  I'm training a new peach tree this way.  You create this single plane of foliage so that you can easily access the canopy front and back rather than around a circle of canopy.  Need more airflow?  Train the left to right foliage so that it faces your prevailing winds.

Not sure what you mean by 10" in.  Anywhere you cut is going to induce foliage output behind those cuts.

Truly amazing and well planned Joe.  I've heard nothing but good things about the Mexicola.  No, it's not in the same class as many of SoCal avocado hybrids but it's a helluva better than the "Tex-Mex" avocados they push here in Texas: Fantastic/Pryor Avocado, Brazos Belle or Wilma. Joey is another one that's crap. 

Might try Reed.  You may have seen where mine took 18F for a short time and came back from stubs last year.  It's now 13' and flowering.

What nails our tropical fruit trees in Texas is the wild temp swings - 80F high one day, Arctic cold front moves in at night with a low of 26F the next morn.  Trees that have some age, are lignified (woody) and have been acclimated to cold can laugh at the cold hardiness ratings on the label or published in guidelines. 

Having said that, check out my little friend. Smallest praying mantis I've ever seen.  It's sitting on a new Kahalu'u graft.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Geodesic dome greenhouse build
« on: May 23, 2019, 07:20:33 AM »
I will measure light and i have tools to measure even the UV.Im planning to grow cherimoyas,Inga in the center,Uvaria grandiflora a few tomatoes and a few red peppers and an annona squamosa.Red guamuchil also and probably somme guava types.

Good luck with that, sounds good.  Should be no UV when you get thru.  I use a meter that measures up to 10K foot candles.

Yep!  How some can eat a couple of LZ at one sitting is beyond me.  it can be really rich and sweet.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Cutting the Top Off (Mango)
« on: May 22, 2019, 08:31:18 AM »
No one with experience?

Yep. Notice from the topping in April to the growth come November.

Year later....

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Geodesic dome greenhouse build
« on: May 22, 2019, 08:29:58 AM »
8 mm insulation its too little.I bought 4 mm double walled polycarbonate for exterior and for the interior il buy 3 mm sheets.

Understand that with such "glazings" your L.T. is probably down to about 50%.  What are you planning to grow?

Has anybody had an experience with I recently purchased a GEM avocado trees from them but I have not heard back from them. Are they a legit company or a scam?


I have a newly grafted GEM.  Way too young to take any wood to share.  It appears to be a super slow grower which is good for most Texans that don't have the outdoors benefit of growing in locales like SoCal.

Curious where are you located and how do you grow?

That peach its a work of art.

Thanks.  Some folks really get carried away this this stuff.  I have a Facebook friend growing near San Francisco that put 250 apple varieties on his tree.  Does the same crazy stuff on other fruits like pear.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Geodesic dome greenhouse build
« on: May 21, 2019, 08:28:21 AM »
Ever thought of just going with 8 mm twin walled polycarb and be done with it?  Kicker is the loss of light transmission, L.T. with layer you apply.

I have never lost any plants or trees in root tip pruning systems like RootMaker.

I've used these treepots with great success mainly for young seedlings like oaks or pecan that have long tap roots.  On some I applied a copper hydroxide root pruning paint at the bottom to terminate the tap root and prevent root spin out. 

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Avocado 24/7 Thread
« on: May 21, 2019, 08:19:15 AM »
I got the first, 'Jan Boyce' variety, avocado fruit!

About 3 years ago, Carlos (the Avocado Doctor) gave me a grafted, high quality fruit tree, potted Avocado variety called 'Jan Boyce', to see how it would do in my home-yard.

Story: the 'Jan Boyce' avocado tree grew to about 12 feet high. Then, a hurricane chopped it off above the graft. It’s now grown again to a height of about 12 feet. And, here are 2 pictures of the very first fruit (Picture Date: May 16, 2019):

Congradulations!  Please post a fruit quality report!  I grafted 2 sticks of JB recently.  Am really hoping they take.

You guys were cursed with that last hurricane.  I know Carlos took a pretty  bad hit.  Is he still in it commercially?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: The Reed avocado thread
« on: May 21, 2019, 08:08:07 AM »
Hi Mark, I'm curious where you source your "Bonzi" (is it Paclobutrazol)?  I looked for some a while back for my side-yard project, but I couldn't find an accessible source for a suburban consumer.

I don't remember where I got it, probably ebay.  I've seen it under the PGR category at ag vendor sites.  Google is your friend.  There's quite a few field studies out there on its application.

It really helps to shorten leggy mangos too.

This one is really packed with some good info for you commercial growers.

Looking good. Anything that repels squirrels can't be half bad.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: The Reed avocado thread
« on: May 20, 2019, 02:40:17 PM »
I took 5' off and braced the remaining 7' with a board under a branch running to the ground.  It'll branch like crazy below that cut.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: The Reed avocado thread
« on: May 20, 2019, 09:58:59 AM »
....and this is not.   :(

One 10' long trunk out of 3 larger ones started tanking over the last 2 days.  It started right after I drenched it with a lot of rainwater.   If the flowers don't make am thinking about taking it down to a stub.  Will tie it up to the rafters for now.  It's about 1.5" thick and healthy with some woodiness going on.


Pinkerton grafts/branches in the separate bed on the right, one cleft and one side veneer.

Peach tree is about 11-12 years old. Was 25' W X 12' H when I chopped it back to induce water sprouts to graft to.

After the 18F in Jan. 2018 I lost most of the wood on my citrus.  What came back is doing great.  I did 83 grafts, most of them on 5 citrus trees.  Within 2 months of grafting I had fruit on some of the grafts. Like this excellent Eustis limequat which is immediately produced 29 fruit on one graft/branch.  Limequat is superior to key lime in all respects including cold hardiness.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: The Reed avocado thread
« on: May 19, 2019, 07:36:54 AM »
Yep, that would be a PITA.  Friend has some cheap labor which helps. 

Nice profile on that Reed Seanny.

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