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Author Topic: Any way to know when an orange is ripe in the tropics?  (Read 200 times)

Zafra

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Any way to know when an orange is ripe in the tropics?
« on: August 04, 2018, 01:57:28 PM »
Hi all. Is there any way to judge the ripeness of citrus in a climate where it won’t necessarily turn color? Thanks!

Millet

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Re: Any way to know when an orange is ripe in the tropics?
« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2018, 10:42:55 PM »
The common method is simply tasting a fruit every now and then as the ripening period is nearing.

Mike T

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Re: Any way to know when an orange is ripe in the tropics?
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2018, 07:05:37 AM »
Oranges have thinner skin, less acid and yes less colour in a warm climate humid climate. While Valencia go bright yellow orange rather than orange even at 10 latitude the lack of acide means you can eat them greener than in cooler climates.With an acid/sugar balance skewed to the sugar not everyone prefers tropical grown oranges. Washingtons are fine at 15 latitude for some growers but mine at 17 latitude were oversized, bland and hardly yellowed when ripe. You just have to select the correct varieties of oranges, mandarins and even lemons all the way to the equator and some mandarins are eaten green and hardly colour up with a few degrees of the equator.

Zafra

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Re: Any way to know when an orange is ripe in the tropics?
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2018, 07:55:58 AM »
Thanks for the responses! We recently bought the property next to ours where we had planted a Valencia and a California navel (and a ton of other stuff not relevant to this post). I was skeptical about the quality possible from the oranges in this climate because all the oranges we’d bought were not very sweet or flavorful. But the two navels we got from the tree’s first harvest were the sweetest most delicious I’ve ever tasted! The Valencia also produced a few sweet fruits. My guess is that people here pick citrus waaaay too early. But meanwhile the new property we bought is full of Valencia trees in very poor condition and the fruit is consistently very sour. We’re taking out a lot of them, will probably top work a few, and a couple we’ll try to recuperate and see if we can get them to produce something good. Most of the trees just finished a full bloom and are covered with little fruit but our Valencia has a huge green orange on it, just one, and I have no idea how long it’s been hanging there. I guess I’ll just keep squeezing it and hoping for at least a subtle color change.
Anyway that brings me (in my head) to 2 questions. One, what’s the general time from flower to ripe fruit for the citrus varieties lime, navel orange, Valencia orange, pomelo, oro blanco, and mandarin?
Two, an aside, that huge Valencia has what looks suspiciously like a navel- do Valencia’s ever have that or could this tree be a mis-label?

Mike T

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Re: Any way to know when an orange is ripe in the tropics?
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2018, 08:39:05 AM »
What latitude are you at, or what location as it makes answering questions so much easier. The tropics is a big area with a diversity of climates.

Zafra

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Re: Any way to know when an orange is ripe in the tropics?
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2018, 10:32:58 AM »
10 degrees latitude, about 900 meters (about 2900 ft) above sea level. Wet/dry tropics, coolish night temps because of the altitude. Thanks!

Mike T

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Re: Any way to know when an orange is ripe in the tropics?
« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2018, 04:25:47 AM »
Now we are getting somewhere and it is ideal for Valencia and they will colour nicely and could even be commercial. Navels will also go well and will colour nicely but not as orange as the valencias.Page would love it, honey murcott would thrive, mandarins of many varieties would flourish and all will colour nicely. A seasonal 150mm/yr and winter minimums of down to say 7c would be ideal for a big range of species and varieties.Atemoyas would do well also and better varieties of avocadoes would also be well suited.

Zafra

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Re: Any way to know when an orange is ripe in the tropics?
« Reply #7 on: August 08, 2018, 11:43:38 AM »
If only I had access to any of the varieties you mentioned! Pickins are pretty slim here. We have Dancy and Ortanique for mandarins, California navel, Valencia and Caracara for oranges. There’s only one pomelo, no idea what variety I guess we’ll see when ours fruits. For grapefruit white marsh which is my favorite but the ones I’ve tasted here have been inedibly sour, I can only hope our growing practices will improve our results. The only avocados we have here are choquette, pollack, Russell (yuck), Catalina and one other the name escapes me, all WI greens. I brought down oro negro, kampong and nishikawa but haven’t gotten fruit from them yet. Any other suggestions?
I think you interpreted “coolish” to mean cool, but I don’t see the Valencia’s getting much color here. We just harvested a bunch yesterday which are moderately sweet, definitely ready to be picked as they’d been hanging for quite a while and the tree is setting a whole new load of new fruit now. I’m hoping I can get sweeter fruit from this tree if I baby it, as it’s been abandoned for several years. Anyway the fruit is mostly yellow-green with some orange blushing.

 

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