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Messages - Millet

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Citrus General Discussion / Plants sense sounds of danger
« on: July 07, 2014, 10:00:44 AM »
Study finds that plants detect predators via vibrations then boost defenses.  Plants can sense and react to temperature changes, harsh winds and even human touch.  But can they hear?  They have no specialized structure to perceive sound as we do, but a new study has found that plants can discern the sound of predators through tiny vibrations of their leaves -- and beef up their defenses in response. It is similar to how our own immune systems work.  An initial experience with insects or bacteria can help plants defend themselves better in future attacks by the same predator.  Although a mustard plant might not respond the first time it encounters a caterpillar, the next time it will boost the concentration of defense chemicals in its system that turn its once delicious leaves into an unsavory, toxic meal. Biologists from the University of Missouri have found that this readying process called "priming" can be triggered by sound alone.  For one group of plants, the scientists carefully mimicked what a plant would "hear" in a real attack by vibrating a single leaf with the sound of a caterpillar chewing.  The other group was left in silence.  When later faced with a real caterpillar, the plants that heard chewing noises produced a greater amount of insecticide like chemicals than the silence group.  They also seemed able to pick out these vibrations signaling danger, the playing of wind noises or insects mating calls did not trigger the same chemical boost. We can imagine applications of this where plants could be treated with sound or genetically engineered to respond to certain sounds of danger that would useful for agriculture, perhaps  instead of the need of spraying. - Millet

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Chas's Citrus Collection
« on: July 06, 2014, 10:22:33 AM »
Chas, all of your trees look very healthy, with good color, and fruit. Your doing a great job with your collection.  Thanks for sharing your pictures.  An Inspiration for sure. - Millet

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: First home grown lychee!
« on: July 05, 2014, 10:28:38 PM »
Was your lychee tree planted as a tree, or was it grown from seed?  If from seed how long did it take to fruit?  - Millet

Do you know the variety of the mandarin, and also, how old was the tree when it got froze to the ground? I take it that the tree was not prot4ected in any manner against the winter cold. - Millet

Joe, was your hardy Mandarin on its own roots, or grafted on another rootstock variety? - Millet

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Valencias grown in the tropics
« on: July 03, 2014, 11:57:32 PM »
With all the foundation dust, the pH must be quite high. Citrus like a pH of 6.5- Millet

Citrus General Discussion / The Once Commercial Lime Industry Gone
« on: July 03, 2014, 05:33:40 PM »
 Florida once grew the majority of the limes bought here in the U.S., said Jonathan Crane, a professor and associate director of University of Florida’s Tropical Research & Education Center. The Florida lime industry was so organized by the 1960s, growers had banded together for research, marketing, and even quality standards. They made sure the limes actually had juice and that they were of a certain size. For a long time, Florida lime growers had little competition. In 1992, the green fruit prospered on 6,102 acres among 270 farms, with much of the acreage in Miami-Dade County. Then, Hurricane Andrew in 1992 cut the lime acreage in the Miami-Dade area in half. The 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement opened the door for limes from Mexico to enter the market. The lime industry rebuilt for the most part after the hurricane, but citrus canker disease was first detected in limes in 1995. The disease reached limes in Homestead five years later. By October 2000, 85 to 90 percent of the lime acreage was burned due to citrus canker. Just as the industry was once again beginning to recover, the canker outbreak caused the destruction of nearly all of the lime trees in Florida. That had some long-ranging tough economic impacts that affected pickers, farmers and even ancillary businesses like fertilizer suppliers.  Of course, farmers are ever resourceful, and they used the former lime land for nurseries and to grow other fruits and vegetables. Florida may still have an ideal climate for lime growing, but growers don't see commercial lime business returning here. The 2012 Census of Agriculture released reported that only 40 farms in the state grow limes on a total of 229 acres. The limes that are grown here are usually sold to local consumers, not commercially. - Millet

This is interesting.  USA is importing South African citrus, and the EU bans citrus from South Africa due to disease problems.....

The European Union  (EU) on Thursday banned most imports of South African citrus for the rest of the current year. The move came amid fears that a fungal disease that were found in dozens of shipments from South Africa which could spread to the 28-nation bloc. Thirty-six citrus consignments had been intercepted earlier this year from the EU's chief summer supplier. Fruit contaminated with the black spot disease is currently not found in Europe at all. The introduction of citrus black spot into the EU territory would pose a serious threat to the EU's citrus-producing areas," Brussels said in a statement. "For that reason, it's necessary to further restrict the import. The EU executive said the ban would apply to all South African citrus shipments from regions where the disease was present, meaning the bulk of the country's production would be affected. - Millet

Thanks Scott for the correction - Millet

The Gloucester Marine Ship Terminal, 30 miles north of Boston, is the ship terminal where South Africa's 2014 citrus imports are entering the USA.  This orange season South Africa is scheduled to import between 30,000 to 40,000 pallets of oranges into the USA.  The first shipment of 3,400 pallets of oranges arrived June 10th on board the the freighter Green Italia. - Millet

Citrus General Discussion / Did YouKnow
« on: July 02, 2014, 09:33:47 PM »
Navel oranges are named so because they have a belly button opposite the stem, but did you know that the bigger the navel, the sweeter the orange. - Millet

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Allspice
« on: July 02, 2014, 09:08:25 PM »
Today's technology of putting a gene from one plant into another plant is becoming rather common.  I wonder what a Minneola tangelo would taste like with a gene from Allspice spliced into its DNA? - Millet.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Nippon Orangequat
« on: July 01, 2014, 10:37:12 PM »
I have never tasted an Orangequat.  I am partial to both sour tasting fruit, as well as sweet tasting fruit.  Let us know what you think of Orangequat's taste when your fruit matures.  I'll be interested. I'll bet Mr. Texas has tasted Orangequat before. - Millet

Citrus General Discussion / A Mandarin Worth Considering
« on: July 01, 2014, 10:23:34 PM »
The Gold Nugget Mandarin which is a sweet tasting UCR variety, is in my opinion a mandarin worth considering.  I ordered a Gold Nugget tree from 4-Wind Growers, and immediately liked it so much, I called Bay Floral and purchased a second one. They are turning out to be a good variety to grow. Being a mandarin they do well  either in the ground or in containers.  Both of my trees are container grown. They are a vigorous, fast growing tree, are seedless, even when grown in mixed company, and thankfully a late season maturing variety. Grown well you can expect 3 to 5 flushes of new growth per year.  What is different about this particular tree, is that its fruit does exceptionally well when left hanging on the tree even into late summer while still keeping its good  quality. Its late season maturing fits well with the early satsuma  Xie Shan, and the mid season mandarin Tango.  Xie Shan is ready from September to Christmas, followed by Tango January to March, and then Gold Nugget from March through August (due to its fruit's long keeping ability).  With just these three trees your family can have fresh fruit year around. - Millet

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Avoiding 'June Drop'
« on: June 30, 2014, 11:27:29 PM »
Brain,the so called June Drop, or excessive shedding of the young fruits, is mainly caused by extremely hot and dry weather, Therefore container trees are commonly not involved with June Drop if kept from overheating.  However, for in ground trees June Drip occurs commonly following worm dry periods.  In the desert and semi-desert sections of California and Arizona this drop can be so heavy, especially with navel orange varieties, that the yield is commonly greatly reduced, sometimes so much so that production is rendered unprofitable.  Other orange varieties and grapefruits are also affected, but no so seriously.  June Drop is largely caused by the severe strain on the tree resulting from low humidity, hot dry weather, which leads to excessive transpiration and loss of water. As a result of this condition fruit abscission is stimulated. - Millet.

Yes I know he has.  I read them..  Anyway, I do not think that Hickson is grown in this country. - Millet

I have never heard of a Hickson Mandarin before this thread.  It must be a variety not grown in the USA.  I checked the Citrus Clonal Protection Program, (CCPP) and it is not listed as one of their varieties. Therefore, certified budwood of Hickson cannot be obtained in the USA.  I did find that the University of California at Riverside, California (UCR) had two Hickson mandarins growing the their citrus tree collection.  Learn something new is a good thing. - Millet

The battle to save the California's Central Valley's citrus industry from the Greening's disease-carrying Asian citrus psyllids is now coming to the central valley's home owner. Starting early next month, the fight will be taken to the yards of homes across Tulare County, along with parts of Fresno counties. That's when the California Department of Food and Agriculture will begin sending a group of 15 technicians to knock on doors of homes to ask if citrus is grown on their property. Technicians will go into yards with orange, lemon and other kinds of citrus trees to see if any have psyllids swarming around them, or if the trees are showing signs of huanglongbing (HLB) — a bacteria the insects can carry and spread from one citrus tree to another. The high-risk surveys, that the state agency has been doing in Southern California since 2012, after the first and so far only HLB infected citrus tree was found in a Rancho Cucamonga neighborhood, will now also be carried out in the Central Valley of California.  - Millet

I was in Miami attending a convention.  While there my son and I drove around Miami just  looking at the city.  I never did see an orange tree. - Millet

The trial is the next step in a lawsuit that was first filed in 2003.  Last year, Judge Keith Kyle ruled the Florida Department of Agriculture and its head, Adam Putnam, were liable for the almost 34,000 trees it destroyed in Lee County from 2000 to 2006 as part of the Citrus Canker Eradication Program. The trees were destroyed because they were located within a 1,900-foot circle from an infected tree. At the start of the trial, Kyle told jurors to remember its focus  “The issue of whether the department was permitted to destroy these trees and whether these trees should or should not have been destroyed is not a matter to be decided by you,” he said. “I have already determined that the department’s destruction of the’ trees constituted a governmental taking. The plaintiffs said the state should pay up to $19 million in compensation. The state offered residents $100 Walmart garden center gift cards for the first tree removed and $55 dollar checks for every other tree removed. State officials said it has already paid a total of $1.7 million.
The trial is expected to last until July 10. - Millet

Bonnie, I agree with you 100%  for mature fruit bearing citrus trees, 24 to 30 inches is certainly about correct.    What is being recommended here is to leave  the lower branches on  young non bearing seedling trees.  There is plenty time to cut the branches after the tree has grown and developed a strong trunk. Research has shown that leaves on the lower branches of the trunk contribute most to the development of trunk diameter, strength and root growth. The sugars manufactured by the leaves in the upper part of the tree stay in the upper plant, plus develop buds for the next flush of growth, and later on for for flower and fruit development.  Trees properly grown will have a trunk taper like a good deep sea fishing rod. You will not get such trunk development without leaving on the lower limbs, AND allowing them sufficient light and space to function. Tree height is not the criteria to use when evaluating young tree quality. Trunk diameter or taper is far more important.  Plus tall slender trees always have poor root systems, because roots cannot grow without energy, and most of the energy for their growth comes from the lower limbs. (Plant Production in Containers-II) - Millet

Citrus General Discussion / Growing Citrus Trees Without Staking.
« on: June 25, 2014, 11:08:10 PM »
The keys are timing, spacing, improved root systems, proper nutrition, shifting plants into larger containers at the proper time and leaving the side branches on as long as practical.  These six factors are critical or you get to sake and stake and tie and tie and wonder why your trees have poor stem diameter/caliper and roots.  You must pay attention to timing relative to the tree's growth.  Once trees in containers, any containers, reach the sidewalls and space for further root development becomes limiting, the tree's  growth pattern becomes like squeezing tooth paste out of the tube, the growth is weak and straight up, and there is no way to get it back into the tube.  ALWAYS leave the lower limbs on the young tree trunks as long as practical.  Research has shown that leaves on the lower trunk contribute most to the development of trunk diameter and strength and good root growth. Air Root Pruning containers are the very best containers for developing a strong trunk and a good root system. It is a matter of root tips and their function.  One root tip can absorb "X" amount of water and nutrients in a day, week or month.  If, by container design and simply using air to dehydrate the root tips, thereby stimulating one root tip to branch  and become 5 and 5 to become 25 and so on, the absorptive capacity of the root system increases dramatically and in turn the leaves are supplied more efficiently with water and nutrients and manufacture more sugars to run the system and positive results occur. As soon the seeds have germinated and are in the propagation containers, they are placed outside in full sun and with full wind.   You want the trunks to bend in the wind as the more the trunks flex the larger in diameter they become (assuming you do not have some other limiting factor) this has been confirmed by some excellent research. It is the resistance against the wind that builds strong straight trunks.  Full sunlight, movement of the young trunks by wind, and proper nutrition are essential, then add  an air root pruning container to build a superior root system and you are off to a great start. - Millet

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Miewa Kumquat
« on: June 25, 2014, 03:11:11 PM »
I have not seen Reid around for a while.  I will have to contact him and order a 2-n-1 Kumquat. - Millet

Citrus General Discussion / Re: SKINN30A CITRUS GROVE PROGRESSION
« on: June 25, 2014, 03:08:58 PM »
Sour Orange rates good for freezes, but susceptible to both burrowing nematodes and citrus nematodes, other then that, it either rates good or tolerant to just about everything else except tristerza virus. - Millet

NEW YORK June 24,2014—U.S. orange-juice retail sales fell to the lowest level in 12 years as consumer demand for what was once a staple of the American breakfast table continues to drop.

U.S. consumers bought 36.99 million gallons of orange juice during the four weeks ended June 7, down 6.9% from a similar period a year ago, according to Nielsen data published Monday by the Florida Department of Citrus. - Millet

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