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Messages - TheVeggieProfessor

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Tropical Fruit Discussion / Front yard tree - east of large oak
« on: September 25, 2022, 02:33:50 PM »
I have a mamey sapote planted in my front yard just outside the drip line of a large oak - to the east. It gets about 4.5-5 hours of sun per day. The mamey just doesn't seem happy there. I have lots of trees planted all around the mamey and it's the only one experiencing any substantial pest pressure. Maybe it's not getting enough sun, or maybe the roots of the oak are making the soil too acidic. I'm thinking about moving the mamey and replacing it with something else that might like those conditions better. I don't want to do a jabo, because it's too far from my spigot to care to run irrigation. I don't want to do carambola either. I'm interested in something that is attractive and where the fruit is not likely to be stolen. I though maybe rolinia. Macadamia could be good, but I won't be able to shoot squirrels in the front yard. Maybe a bird feeder in the back would be enough - I could knock them out back there and then won't have them in the front either. Maybe a tropical persimmon? Any other ideas for a tree that would be happier there? Preferably a nut or off-season tree.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: 10b (south florida) perennial staple foods
« on: September 25, 2022, 02:29:49 PM »
Groundnut (apios americana or prieceana), Jicama (pachyrizus sp.s), dioscorea sp., sweet corn root (calathea allouia), texas ebony (ebenopsis ebano), malabar chestnut. what about oil crops? such as acorns, cocoplums, oil palms, macadamia,. there have to be some many other nuts as well..

I commented earlier about oyster nuts. I'm planning on trying to find some seeds and trying it out next Spring. Sacha inchi seems like a great candidate as well, though I know it's a pain to process the nuts (as is the case for many nuts).

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Fruiting Shade Tree - Worth it?
« on: September 18, 2022, 11:07:35 AM »
You can use most of the common tropical fruit trees for this purpose.
Just don't get a dwarf varieties.

Mango, Jackfruit, and avocado should all be pretty easy.
I would consider mammea americana or starapple, they are pretty trees and the fruit don't make a huge mess.

I'm doing the same in front of my western-facing windows, I try to keep the canopy level with my roof, I don't let the branches hang over though.

I planted a jackfruit and red custard apple to the southwest and southnorth repsectively to help with shading the west of my house, but I think I planted them too far to get much of a favorable effect. So I planted some bananas and pigeon peas closer to the house. Time will tell...

I can't plant anything too far from the house, because I only have ~20' to my fence.
I was thinking maybe an avocado, jamaican strawberry, or macadamia (depending upon tendency to blow over; I'll look into that) 10-12' from the house could be a good choice. I'd love to have a breadfruit, but that could be too big. Plus marginal for west broward county (zone 10b). Maybe it would get some heat from my house since it's planted due south? But probably too far away for the microclimate effect from my home.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Fruiting Shade Tree - Worth it?
« on: September 17, 2022, 06:29:26 PM »
Off the top of my head I think of my old house that had english ivy growing up the southern wall, given that it's only a one story house what do you think of a vining plant like passionfruit? Good for your area, One vine gets up to 50 feet, fruits aren't too heavy and can be picked with those fruit picking poles pretty easily, + beautiful flowers

I was thinking about that. Did you put a trellis up to the south of your house or attach something to the house itself?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Fruiting Shade Tree - Worth it?
« on: September 17, 2022, 03:06:09 PM »
I'm in SE FL. Interested in adding a shade tree to the south of my house to help to keep my living room a bit cooler. I like for all of the trees I grow to serve a purpose and producing food is the most appealing purpose. However, I'd want to let the tree grow tall to shade as much of the home as possible (1 story only). So harvesting the fruit would be a pain. Perhaps something that drops fruits (such as macadamia) would be worthwhile? Or maybe something that I can trellis yams up. Any recommendations?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: What To Do With Green Bananas?
« on: September 13, 2022, 12:17:38 PM »
I like making baked green banana chips or fries. Cut the ends off, make a slit down, then peel the skin off (use a knife and cutting board you don't care about!). Then slice and bake at 400 for 20 minutes (flip half way through if you care to).

I like to boil them sometimes too.

Sorry to hijack, but is Rollinia evergreen in 10b? (west broward county fl)

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: 10b (south florida) perennial staple foods
« on: September 08, 2022, 10:38:57 AM »

Whatever you do, stay away from true yams (Dioscorea family).  They grow so easily that they are horribly invasive.  If you aren't careful, everywhere you look there will be a vine with a big edible root under it.  It would be terrible.

Good point. You have to stay on top of collecting the bulbils. There are varities (I've seen for sale on cody cove farms) that do not produce bulbils - so that would be the way if growing yams.

Cody cove also sells a variety of chayote that is thorny and tastes like a potato - not sure if it's just the flavor or if it in fact has higher calories.

I posted about this initially, but based on my research, it seems like oyster nuts are underrated as a staple crop for tropical/subtropical climates. A vining species that produces an abundance of easily stored and nutritious nuts. Cuttings would be preferred over seeds since you need a male and a female and won't know which is which for I think a year and a half, but I haven't been able to track them down. Going to figure out a trellising system and start from seed. Excited to give it a try. They produce for 20 years I think. The nuts are encased within a pumpkin looking thing, so my hope is the squirrels don't give too much trouble (especially if I plant them in the front yard making it difficult to add the squirrels as a sustainable protein source to my diet).

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: 10b (south florida) perennial staple foods
« on: September 07, 2022, 11:54:31 AM »
I appreciate the great discussion on this thread. I wonder how well rollinia fits the bill as a staple food? I hear it's very filling.

Jamaican strawberry came up as an option for a berry that - although not very filling - produces most of the year. Has anyone tried to dehydrate these? I wonder how they would work for an on-the-go snack. Mulberries are also a good choice as far as I can tell for an easy to produce berry. Berries won't fill you up, but they pack a lot of nutrition.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: 10b (south florida) perennial staple foods
« on: September 05, 2022, 07:58:13 AM »
Another thought. Not food but I use soap every day. In the vein of sustainable living, growing my own soap would be valuable. Does anyone have experience with soapberry? I know Iíll need a male and female. I wonder how small these trees can be maintained while still fruiting?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: 10b (south florida) perennial staple foods
« on: September 04, 2022, 06:19:49 PM »
Thanks for all of the great suggestions. I already have pretty much all of the perennial vegetables (except for Chaya - the one that CarolinaZone was referring to - which has to be boiled before it is safe to consume).

Among everything that was mentioned, I'm really interested in breadfruit, though I don't have the biggest yard and already have a lot of trees. Is 12x12 feasible for a breadfruit tree?

Malabar chestnut is super interesting, but I know it contains a fatty acid that is toxic and a possible carcinogen. Of course, the dose makes the poison.

Breadnut is also very interesting but, as far as I'm aware, is pretty marginal for my climate. I also don't know how I would go about finding a tree. 8-10 years is a long wait if going by seed. Plus, these are gigantic trees and I doubt I have the space. Could this one be maintained around 12x12?

I have an avocado and mamey, which were mentioned.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / 10b (south florida) perennial staple foods
« on: September 04, 2022, 08:20:11 AM »
In the vein of living more sustainably, I've been buying more local food and growing more and more of my own food. It's easy to find locally and grow your own "nutrition" crops, like green leafies. I can also find local fruits easily. But staple foods are harder to come by. So now I am growing my own annual staple crops (e.g., sweet potatoes, cassava, etc.). But I am more interested in perennials; tree and shrub crops. Here's what I have going on right now and what I have in mind.

Jackfruit (for the seeds)
Pigeon pea

Oyster nut

Any other ideas for perennial crops that can provide meaningful amounts of calories and macronutrients like carbs, proteins, and fats that grow in my climate?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Help filling out a hedge
« on: September 02, 2022, 08:23:07 AM »
Does anyone with familiarity with soapberry trees think they would work in this space? Or will they want to grow too big? I'm intrigued at the idea of growing my own soap, but all of my space for larger trees are taken up by fruiting cultivars.

Similarly, anyone with familiarity with macadamia think they would work in this space?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Help filling out a hedge
« on: August 31, 2022, 07:24:11 PM »
That's for the recent suggestions. I may be overthinking this, but my concern with cassava (or other root crops for that matter) is if the pesticides could potentially be uptaken by the root. For instance, I know that cassava absorbs pesticides pretty well. I wonder if the safety of the root can be compromised. I'm probably being overly paranoid, but it is a thought that I have. I generally don't like to grow roots along property lines because of all of the poisons people spray on their lawns; I don't want it getting into the roots of my plants. Maybe unreasonable concern, though.

Based on these discussions and my desire for access, I'll probably keep the bananas that aren't diseased, throw in some pigeon peas, and put up some trellises for passionfruit and granadilla (I've never had the large ones before, but I love the other variety that I have tasted). If space permits I may work in a dwarf sapodilla or slow growing mango (e.g., pickering).

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Help filling out a hedge
« on: August 29, 2022, 12:13:54 PM »
Regular guava should be good.
Dwarfish mango, manalita is an upright dwarf.
Lemon Drop or similar vigor garcinias
Maybe dwarf Sapodilla would work too.

Jabos and Eugenias as mentioned before is an option but the lower vigor might be an issue
Yellow Jabo seems a good degree faster than the rest (at least in my exp)

If you need something fast I'd plant some fast trees (mangos, Jackfruit, Soursop) at 12-foot spacing and fill in the space with flowering gingers for privacy

These are all really great suggestions. I just measured and I have 11 feet between the fence and the pool gate. So I suppose if I went with some of these options (guava, compact mango, lemon drop mangosteen etc.), I would put them, what, 5 feet off the fence? And then I'd have to keep the canopy opposite the fence elevated so I can still walk around over there. Is this what you were thinking?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Help filling out a hedge
« on: August 28, 2022, 04:19:52 PM »
I would plant some sugar cane. Black preferably.

Thanks. Doesn't sugar cane require a lot of water? I'd also need to invest in a juicer for it I guess. It's an interesting suggestion.

Some other ideas came to mind, but not sure if they're viable given the space constraints. Makok sapodilla and soapberry.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Help filling out a hedge
« on: August 28, 2022, 12:44:25 PM »
Are pomegranates evergreen in Florida?

I believe it is deciduous, so not ideal. Also, my understanding is that the varieties we grow here are pretty poor. I could erect a few trellises here and there and try passionfruit and granadilla. It would be as much privacy as the bananas, but could be a good option.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Help filling out a hedge
« on: August 28, 2022, 09:36:04 AM »
Hi all. I was in need of privacy along my fence, so I planned to plant a hedge of fruiting plants. However, my neighbors have a mosquito spray that the wind carries over to my property, so I didn't want to plant anything with edible skin. Along most of the hedge, the space I am working with is pretty narrow (about 9 feet or so until you reach my pool fence). I decided to plant bananas along the hedge, which worked great for a while, until a disease showed up, which has been spreading to many of my bananas. I am in the process of diagnosing and treating the disease, but it has underscored to me the importance of avoiding a monoculture. This would be much easier to treat if it didn't spread so rapidly down my hedge. So I am going to pull out some of the bananas that appear to be too far gone and replace them with other plants. However,  am still not sure what to choose, given that I need a plant that will grow to at least 8' to provide some privacy, but also that won't encroach too much on the pool fence. I still need to be able to walk around there. I am going to do some pigeon peas, but I am looking for additional ideas. I thought that araza might be a possibility.
This spot along my fence gets full sun. It is along the east of my property, running from north to south. Thanks for any ideas.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: How close can I plant avocado trees?
« on: July 28, 2022, 07:25:01 AM »
Would a Finger lime and jujube hedge as living fence work?

Unfortunately, the same rule applies for hedges because it impairs the vision of the cars turning the corner. However, that is an awesome idea if I kept it up more toward the house and put my trees behind it, and I could eat off of it! I am going to look into jujube plants tonight.

Thank you, Slopat!

Even a very small barrier like a picket fence or clumping grass would deter some people. Not those who are determined, but it does make a bit of a psychological barrier for those who would otherwise grab a few fruits when walking by.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: How close can I plant avocado trees?
« on: July 25, 2022, 01:26:54 PM »
This is so horrible.

This makes me so worried about my front yard trees.  I planted in my front yard because I want as many trees as possible.  I have 27 trees on 1/3 acre.  I have jackfruit, coconut, lime, avocado and mango in the front yard.  I have the option to put all buy 1 coconut tree inside a front yard fence.  All my trees in the front are not producing yet.  I could also do security cameras, but that may not deter them.  Right now I have a front yard papaya tree that will produce in a few months so I'll see if anyone takes them.  I don't want to go through the expense of the fence or cameras but I'm expecting that I probably will have to.  :'(

I know, I want to plant in the front yard, too. I am going to try to plant close to the house and just see what happens. There are so many cool fruit trees that I want to plant that grow in South Florida, but my backyard is too small to fit them all! I think I am going to plant a Mamey Sapote and White Sapote in the front this weekend. I am hoping that maybe people won't recognize them as easily as the Avocado and Mangos?!
Good Luck, Julie!

I'm quite worried about my front yard trees as well, but I'd rather have something growing even if some get stolen than nothing at all. I think my jackfruit will take a hit, followed by mamey. Red custard apple, unsure. Barbados cherry, persimmon, and fig I think are safe.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: How close can I plant avocado trees?
« on: July 24, 2022, 04:25:27 PM »
There are articles about planting 3 trees side by side especially for pollination.  I did that with my fig trees, but not my avocados.
I have to keep my avocados small so don't need to plant them too far apart.  When I plant, I am thinking about the size I will let
each get.
Blessings with your avocado trees.

Thank you! Yes, I want to keep them small because I don't need a ton of fruit, it's just for my family and friends. I do want multiple trees to extend the season. Do you think if I keep them small that 10 feet apart will be enough?

10 ft is way too tight. No closer than 15. You can also consider doing 1 tree and grafting the other varieties onto it. Avocados can't really be preserved too well so that way you extend the season with being overwhelmed with too much fruit. Then more space for other species.

Fruits n cahoots in davie. On the same property as tree amigos growers on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

Any recommendations for the above? I've heard that Venus has good resistance.

Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / Re: WTB 7-15g Pickering mango tree
« on: July 17, 2022, 02:50:35 PM »
Try hidden acres mango farm and bills tropical fruit trees.

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