Author Topic: Where to hunt for fruit in California?  (Read 5245 times)

Jared

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Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« on: November 15, 2016, 01:09:52 PM »
Hey guys!

I'm planning a trip to hunt for fruit (not plants/seeds) in CA and am looking for good markets, nurseries, gardens, foraging spots, and friends who don't mind sharing. Will most likely be out that way in January at some point. Any suggestions on good places to look?

This is all for my youtube series, where I'm documenting every edible fruit I can find. So I'm specifically trying to find rare fruit that I have never tried before, doesn't need to be especially good tasting.  ::)
- Jared
Check out my youtube series, Weird Fruit Explorer:
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Vernmented

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2016, 02:07:48 PM »
I don't know how far north you are going but Dave Wilson Nursery makes some incredible videos for growers. They do a lot of business with Zaiger Genetics which are responsible for most of the interspecific stone fruit crosses. They might be good to contact and explain your youtube channel. I'm not sure what would be in season right now but Dave Wilson might have some weird pomegranates or apples.

Tropic Fruit in San Jose had fresh unfrozen durian when I was there as well as a bunch of other stuff. Stay away from the mangosteen. No bueno.
https://www.yelp.com/biz/tropical-fruits-san-jose

There was another Asian fruit store a few doors down that had some different dried stuff as well.

Love the series. I have watched at least 85% of them.

UC in Riverside did a bunch of genetic testing on dragon fruit and have a test planting. I'm not sure on the season out there but I have fruit on mine here.

Lots of backyard annonas, especially from people on this forum. :)

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ricshaw

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2016, 03:03:18 PM »
In SoCal Vallarta Supermarket's produce section is sometimes worth a visit.

Also any Vietnamese market in Little Saigon, Orange County would be worth a visit!

http://www.vallartasupermarkets.com


« Last Edit: November 15, 2016, 03:10:51 PM by ricshaw »

fyliu

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2016, 04:20:07 PM »
Papaya Tree Nursery and Exotica nursery in Vista will let you try fruits in season.

Not much fruits available in January though. A couple of pomegranates will hold fruit to January. Too early for loquats. Almost pummeling season. Kishu should be in season for me. A little early for pixie and gold nugget.

CA is a big ag. state so we're really strict about importing fruits. There's more exotic fruits in Toronto Chinatown than here.

On the other hand, some of our bugs might look exotic.


spaugh

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2016, 04:20:46 PM »
California is a big place.  Any idea where in CA you will be?  Best places to find rare stuff is southern CA.  Vista, fallbrook maybe hit some farmers markets and some asian supermarkets.
Brad Spaugh

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #5 on: November 15, 2016, 04:22:22 PM »
California is a big place.  Any idea where in CA you will be?  Best places to find rare stuff is southern CA.  Vista, fallbrook maybe hit some farmers markets and some asian supermarkets.

I had a few of those bugs here.   What are they?  How about tarantula hawks?  Have those? 
Brad Spaugh

BrianL

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #6 on: November 15, 2016, 04:33:26 PM »
Yeah January isn't the best time in CA for looking for fruits. Maybe some native fruits since winter is the rainy season at least in theory?

fyliu

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #7 on: November 15, 2016, 04:34:41 PM »
It's a cricket relative commonly called the potato bug. They have strong mouths and look scary but mainly eat decomposing matter. Kind of like earth worms but scary, tough, and crawls fast.

Here it is playing dead.

Oh yeah, it's native to the west coast.

Jared

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #8 on: November 15, 2016, 04:48:13 PM »
Vernmented, Awesome! I'll mark these places down on my list. Dave Wilson Nursery sounds especially interesting, maybe I can do a cross over with him!

Ricshaw, noting these places. thanks!

Fyliu, if I see that insect while I'm there, I'll fly right back where I came from! What would be a better time to visit? Its kind of tricky for me to get out that way during the summer since that's my busy season for work. But if there's nothing out there, then maybe I'll postpone the trip.

Spaugh, I'll take up to a week to explore, so could potentially traverse the entire state if there's fruit to be found.  ;)
- Jared
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BrianL

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #9 on: November 15, 2016, 06:10:37 PM »
Might be worth asking some CRFG chapters where you know you will be going.  Might even be able to see some yards with some odder stuff.

fyliu

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #10 on: November 15, 2016, 06:18:51 PM »
There's feijoa, white sapote, pomegranate now. Winter is kind of the slow season. If you come when there's cherimoya tasting in Irvine, that might be interesting. It's Jan 13 for now. http://screc.ucanr.edu

alan

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #11 on: November 16, 2016, 12:55:47 AM »
A really good market for rare fruit with very good quality (pricey nonetheless) is Trai Cay Ngon in Westminster (right near the LA/OC border).  They have the biggest selection on a regular basis that I have seen in the area.
« Last Edit: November 16, 2016, 01:48:48 PM by alan »

Bush2Beach

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #12 on: November 16, 2016, 01:41:21 PM »
White Sspote, Cherimoya, strawberry guava, white Malaysian guava, macadamia nut, Babaco Papaya,Gooseberry and probably more should all be in season.
Definitely check Tropical Fruits in San Jose for the best and freshest sourced tropical fruits. Whoever got sub par Mangosteen from there , that was an anomaly , normally green stemmed and soft on top with no browning or discoloration. Fresh and the best is where they specialize above the other imported fruit offerings.

jason (palo alto)

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #13 on: November 16, 2016, 03:38:11 PM »
Not sure how I never heard of the Tropical Fruits store in San Jose... and I've driven right by there.

Not a lot ripe in January other than citrus. In January are the annual CRFG scion exchanges which are a sight to behold for fruit growers. Occasionally, someone brings in something fun to taste.

Another interesting place in NorCal to try fruit is Berkeley Bowl in Oakland, they sometimes have something unusual. They usually have the most cultivars of the common fruit to. Usually 20+ varieties of apples, should have close to that many varieties of mandarins. Plus they are all labelled by cultivar.

JF

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #14 on: November 16, 2016, 11:12:16 PM »
It's a cricket relative commonly called the potato bug. They have strong mouths and look scary but mainly eat decomposing matter. Kind of like earth worms but scary, tough, and crawls fast.

Here it is playing dead.

Oh yeah, it's native to the west coast.

fried chapulines are delicious they are better than anchovies



« Last Edit: November 17, 2016, 12:20:56 AM by JF »

Jared

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #15 on: November 17, 2016, 10:24:15 AM »
Alan, checked out the yelp page for Trai Cay Ngon, looks pretty impressive. I've never seen purely white rose apples before even in SE asia. I'll definitely put it on the map.

Bush2Beach Tropical Fruits in San Jose is going on the list.

Jason, adding Berkley Bowl to the list and will see if I can check out the scion exchange.


If January is such a slow time, what would be the prime time to visit? I'm starting to worry that I'm not going to find anything new while I'm there.  :-\
- Jared
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http://www.youtube.com/channel/UChsbD6Clp-ZPqKwXJR3V7DQ

JF

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #16 on: November 17, 2016, 10:49:17 AM »
Alan, checked out the yelp page for Trai Cay Ngon, looks pretty impressive. I've never seen purely white rose apples before even in SE asia. I'll definitely put it on the map.

Bush2Beach Tropical Fruits in San Jose is going on the list.

Jason, adding Berkley Bowl to the list and will see if I can check out the scion exchange.


If January is such a slow time, what would be the prime time to visit? I'm starting to worry that I'm not going to find anything new while I'm there.  :-\

Jared
If you want to taste the best cherimoyas in world January thru March is a good time to visit SoCal. There are other stuff as other posters have mention but your focus would be cherimoyas. Exotica is a unique place to visit Steve has rare fruits ripening year round. Don't worry Mark Lee, Simon and I will help you out.....let us know went you are coming in advance.
 don't worry we have lots of stuff here what I harvest today


« Last Edit: November 17, 2016, 03:41:46 PM by JF »

forumfool

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #17 on: November 17, 2016, 11:19:23 AM »
The farmers market at the San Jose Flea Market is quite huge if you go on the weekend you will find something. I've gotten cherimoya, sapote, guava, mamey, prickly pear, and others just depends on time of year what is in season.

SocalKoop

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #18 on: November 17, 2016, 01:44:19 PM »
The cherimoya tasting in Irvine mentioned  is a must.  Free, usually a dozen plus varieties,  and you can purchase bags of them at an extremely low price to take away.
"Failing to prepare is preparing for failure." -Benjamin Franklin

knlim000

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #19 on: November 17, 2016, 01:56:59 PM »
if you drive, stop by san luis obispo farmers market on thursday
 night, they have cherimoya, not sure if they
 have it in jan, but defintely in feb. 

Jared

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #20 on: November 18, 2016, 12:13:51 PM »
JF, nice haul! Thanks for the offer. I'll reach out to you once I have a date set. Annonas are one of my favorite fruits so I don't mind if that's the focus of this trip. Is it only Cherimoya that shows up during this time or do other species appear as well? Annona reticulata, Annona diversifolia, etc?

forumfool & knlim000, I'll check those places out, thanks! I think there will be a lot of farmers markets in my future.

SocalKoop, super! I'll check it out.

- Jared
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BrianL

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #21 on: November 18, 2016, 02:37:18 PM »
Maybe you should check out plantings?

Burbank Experimental Garden in Sebastapol, Quarry Lakes in Fremont, Prush Park in San Jose, Fullerton Arboretum in Fullerton.  LA Arbo and SD Arbo both charge, but the first one is relatively cheap.

Jared

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #22 on: December 05, 2016, 01:36:27 PM »
Trip report!
I ended up getting a last min gig in San Jose and managed to get an extra day to explore. Taking everybody's advice I did the following:

First I hit two farmers markets, found some oddities (buddhas hand abounds) but nothing I hadn't had before.

Stopped at Tropical Fruits on Silver Creek Rd and found nothing, but the shop a couple doors down had an impressive collection: ambarella fruit, jackfruit, several guava varieties, dragon fruit, rambutan, etc etc etc.. all stuff I had, but some fruits I haven't seen outside SE asia. Stopped at nearby New Seasons Supermarket and picked up a Bacon Avocado.

Next I wandered around the cactus garden at Stanford and foraged a few odd cactus fruits.. gotta do some research to make sure they're edible.

I was about to turn back and go to the hotel at this point, but against my better judgement I took the 1+ hour trip through heavy traffic all the way up to Berkley Bowl. This was completely worth the trip, they had an impressive amount of fruit. I managed to find some Xoconostle, which I've never heard of before. These days finding just one new fruit makes a trip a success for me, so mission accomplished!

I'm going to come back again to wander South CA, using all the suggestions. thanks for all the help guys, this was a lot of fun!

- Jared
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http://www.youtube.com/channel/UChsbD6Clp-ZPqKwXJR3V7DQ

sapote

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #23 on: December 05, 2016, 08:49:23 PM »
It's a cricket relative commonly called the potato bug. They have strong mouths and look scary but mainly eat decomposing matter. Kind of like earth worms but scary, tough, and crawls fast.

Here it is playing dead.

Oh yeah, it's native to the west coast.

I only found these succulent bugs under the soil when digging around, and never have seen one on top of ground. I thought they were at a stage before emerge into something more beautiful. Or, maybe I am talking something else completely?

Sapote

fyliu

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Re: Where to hunt for fruit in California?
« Reply #24 on: December 07, 2016, 11:27:49 AM »
Santa Monica farmers market is interesting  member Steven Murray has a family fruit stand there. He collects rare fruits and brings some to the market. Or you can contact him directly if you're passing by Bakersfield.

 

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