Author Topic: Potted Longan - keep or toss?  (Read 829 times)

TriangleJohn

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Potted Longan - keep or toss?
« on: December 09, 2018, 05:57:33 PM »
So I have this hoop house I seal up tight for winter (I'm in zone 7b, Raleigh NC). It's 20' by 30' with a 15' center ridge built on old basketball court asphalt pad. I grow fruit trees in large containers. Some I move outside for summer and others are too big to move so they stay in the structure all year. I grow a lot of stuff from seed. I have a Longan that I grew from grocery store fruit seed and it is a monster. I have to trim it back every year to keep it away from the ceiling plastic. It blooms and fruit every year. Some years the fruit is larger than others, but it has never made fruit the size that I originally purchased from the store. This could be because it is a seed grown tree or it could be because it is growing in a container. The fruit is nothing special flavor wise either. My dilemma is that other trees are finally getting up to fruit bearing age and produce much tastier fruit (guavas and mangoes along with citrus). I have whittled down the citrus collection to the top performers and I would like to let the Ruby Supreme Guava get as big as it wants because I like the flavor and it fruits for a much longer period.

My question is, do you think the flavor and fruit size will improve if I plant it in a larger container? feed it regularly?

I have the same problem with a tree fern. It's getting to the point where it will touch the ceiling and I either have to chip a hole in the floor and plant it in the ground or find it another home. We have dry periods and it sulks during them, making it not a showstopper in the collection.

simon_grow

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Re: Potted Longan - keep or toss?
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2018, 06:40:21 PM »
If you thin your Longan panicles when the fruit are about pea sized, you can significantly increase the size of the fruit. Thin them by removing half the fruit in each panicle.

With proper fertilization, you can increase the flavor/sweetness of your fruit. For potted plants, Iíve found out that frequent diluted feedings significantly helps with growth and flavor of the fruit although I have not fruited Longan in a pot before. I have noticed that that giving my Longan plenty of water while holding fruit will give me larger fruit but the flavor is not as sweet nor concentrated. What I do is water a lot during early to mid Fruit development and then I taper off watering towards the end when the fruit is almost ready to harvest.

The attributes of the Longan( size and taste), are very much influenced by genetics and as you probably are aware, grafted trees are much better in this respect.

If you love Longan, just not the one youíre currently growing, I would suggest you hat rack your Longan and graft it with Biew Kiew and/or Sri Chompoo. If you have low scaffold branches, you can easily graft a few of these branches.

Since you mentioned you grew your Longan from seed, Iíll assume it is tall and Christmas tree shaped. In this case, you may want to cut off everything at knee level(18-22 inches). If you can keep your greenhouse warm enough, you can cut it now but if it gets too cold, you may want to hold off till Spring. After you top your tree, you should see lots of new growth from below your cut.

Select about 3-5 evenly spaced branches and remove everything else. Once the branches are large enough, innarch them if you are not good at grafting or graft the branches if you are good at grafting.

If you are good at grafting, you only need to select about three branches but Longan can be difficult to graft if you are not familiar with grafting.

Simon

 

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