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Topics - Epicatt2

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Got to wondering whether selecting material (seeds or plants) of Annona macroprophyllata from the upper elevations of its natural habitat range would provide material which would be better suited to tolerating our cool winter temperatures here in Florida (9b).

Are there any TFF members growing such 'upper elevation' ilamas in central Florida who may have noticed better cold tolerance of theirs?

Or maybe member Raul in México will chime in here with some info since he collects seeds of this species in the wild.

¡Pura Tertulia!

Paul M.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Night Length and Tropical Fruit Species . . .
« on: September 01, 2022, 02:19:44 AM »
Never seen this discussed on here so I'll ask . . . .

For those of you city-dwelling TFF members living and growing in urban areas of the tropics and sub-tropics:

Do you find that fruit species you are growing which are normally native to tropical areas that receive mostly even amounts of day and night during the annual cycle in their native lands, do these species seem to grow, flower, and fruit even though they may be exposed to a nearby street light that burns all night year round?  Which sepcies in your experience?

And then the converse:  Which species seem to have their growing, flowering, fruiting cycle ineterrupted by nearby street lights?

Just wondering about this and whether street lights may be a problem with some of the Eugenias and Garcinias that I'm growing here in Tampa.


Paul M.

Could someone please point me toward a Florida nursery that is offering Kwai Muk in say, 3 gallon pots, and that is willing to ship?  So far my searching comes up 'out-of-stock' everywhere.  Not lookng for a tiny seedling and would prefer to pay somewhat less than $100.

Wanting to try growing this here in 9b.

Fingers X-ed.


Paul M.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Sexing Melicoccus bijugatus (Spanish Lime)
« on: August 02, 2022, 02:12:29 PM »
Is there any easy  way to sex Melicoccus bijugatus to tell whether it is male, female, or bisexual.

I understand this species tends to be dioecious but that some individuals do produce perfect flowers.

I suspect there may be some way to tell without having to wait for a tree to mature enough to produce flowers.


Paul M.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Are abius heavy feeders?
« on: July 19, 2022, 09:45:32 PM »
I bought six seeds from a TFF member in Venice, FL two years ago.  Four sprouted right away and grew like gangbusters.

Two feet tall and transplanted into 3 gal pots early last year they continued to grow well until our several cold nights in January this year (2022).

Three of the four stopped growing after those coldest days (33ºF here in Tampa) and their leaves slowly began to yellow and all fell off by February's end.  The liviing one that remains is limplng along and still has its leaves but they are half the length of last year's growth and this one remaing abiu is just sitting there.

Is this somethng cultural like are they heavy feeders or do they need to have a certain pH level to thrive?
It's getting watered weekly and gets partial sun (1/2 a day).

Any suggestions for getting this abiu to resume growing would be welcomed.

Paul M.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Passiflora citrina question . . .
« on: July 07, 2022, 02:29:45 PM »
Anyone on TFF growing P. citrina I'm wondering if you have been able to fruit this species.

Mine flowers abundantly but hasn't set any fruit to date, so I have ordered another individual in hopes that that will make a difference.

And if you have fruited it is the seed/pulp at all tasty? (I know there's not much in those small fruit.)  I can't find anything online about the value or taste of the fruit.

Fingers X-ed!

Paul M.

Who of y'all are growing ilamas in Florida zone 9b?

Do they need or appreciate hilling if your soil isn't sandy and well draining?

As far as cold tolerance of this particular Anona (32º - 30ºF.), are they more tolerant of the cold while they're leafless?

Have you noticed any needed cultural differences between the white-fleshed and pink-fleshed varieties?

Do yours seem to like one sort of fertilizer more than another type?

Just trying to get a handle on growing this particular Annona before I take the plunge.

Regards & TIA,

Paul M.

I keep wondering whether those of us who buy plants on eBay and pay via PayPal have any recourse against being charged sales tax on food plants, fruit trees, etc.?

I realize this is possibly different in other US states but, generally speaking, tax is not charged in grocery stores for non-prepared food items.  But at least here in Florida food plants are included on an official state list of non-taxable items.

But the real question is: How to get online business entities like PayPal, eBay, Amazon, etc. to recognize this and vacate the business of charging us sales tax on fruit trees, culinary herbs, vegetables, seeds (for vegetables), etc.

Any ideas?

Paul M.

Recently someone mentioned a video which was a tour of a south Florida yard with many types of Annonaceae growing in it.  The tour was given by the owner of the property whose name was I think Bob, who appears to be Hispanic or Asian.  He was extremely knowledgeable about all the Anonnas he's growing.

I intended to bookmark the video but apparently did not and now cannnot locate the thread that the link was posted in, search as I tried.

Can someone point me to the post with the link in it please?  It went up within the last month in one of the TFF posts.  I'll be sure to bookmark it this time!

Fingers X-ed  &  TIA

Paul M.

I get that it's probably squirrels that are stripping the way immature fruits off my MEXICOLA GRANDE tree.

But what would take a hard green half-grown mango?  The cultivar is ICE CREAM and both this and last year my half-grown fruits vanished well before they were ripe.  I doubt it's humans that swiped them since the fruit was not visible from the street and the fruit didn't just fall off because it was nowhere to be found.

Could it be 'possums?  Don't think it would be racoons because I have not seen any around here in a long time.

In any event it's a mystery to me.


Paul M.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Sexing Garcinia livingstonei . . . .
« on: May 17, 2022, 10:50:04 PM »
Can someone refer me to a source show me how to sex Imbe, please?

I have a number of seedlings whch have taken several years to start growing after I received them and planted them.  Now that they are finally growing they will soon need to be planted up or put into the ground.

Having read somewhere that G. livingstonei is dioecious I'd like to pair up for planting together whichever ones are male and female Imbe seedlings for better cropping, ultimately.

So, can someone please point me in the right direction to help me understand how to tell the difference between the sexes with Imbe?


Paul M.

Gentle TFF Members,

In observance of National Limerick Day* today, here's
something I wrote for our TFF members' amusement:

There's tastier fruits than the litchi,
And many of those are just peachy,
. . Plus there's many a time,
. .That I've tasted key lime,
But I've never tried an ogeechee!


Paul M.
* National Limerick Day is celebrated on May 12th and commemorates the birthday
of Edward Lear (1812–1888), the English writer of nonsense poetry and limericks.

I'd like to try Passiflora laurifolia and am looking for someone who might have some cuttings to offer.

And I would also be interested in cuttings from different plants (individuals) if this species is not self-fertile.


Paul M.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / PINK PINEAPPLES - PROMO PIECE . . . .
« on: February 27, 2022, 11:43:42 AM »
Gentle TFF Members,

Here is a link to an article about Del Monte's new pink pineapples that I found in the TicoTimes, an online Costarrican Newspaper and which I thought some of our TFF members might be interested to read:

The Del Monte Pink Pineapples of Costa Rica

Granted it is a promo for these 'new' pink piñas, but there are a few bits of interesting infromation on them in the article that I had not heard about before.

¡Pura Vida!

Paul M.
Zone 9b

Gentle TFF Mango Aficionados, with the recent threads about mango bloomspike initiation I am moved to ask:

Generally speaking, is there much diference between the inception time of flowering for mangoes in zone 9b vs zone 10?

Or would the flowerspikke initiation be more related to the particular cultivar of mango that's involved?

I ask because I've only had my 4 mango cultivars* for one season now and haven't been able to find anything related to my question on here or online.

Comments appreciated!

Paul M.
Tampa, FL
Zone 9b


Gentle TFF Members,

Since there always seems to be a lot of discussion about mango cultivars on this group I was hoping to get some feedback from the members about any mango cultivars which are considered dwarf or semi-dwarf trees and which would be suitable for zone 9b.

I have these four cultivars now:

Ice Cream

Are these decent choices for dwarf or semi-dwarf varieties?

What other cultivars would you recommend which are touted as dwarf or semi-dwarf varieties?   (Someone already suggested Pickering.)

I plan to keep my manngo cultivars pruned to about eight feet max.


Paul M.

Hello All,

My Eugenia stipitata (araçá-boi) is in bud right now (Sept 1st).  It has been in a 7 gallon pot all this season and made it through the hottest part of the summer with only a bit of leaf-tip burn.  It's gotten plenty of water during our Florida rainy season.

If anyone else is growing this species I'd very much like to learn what is your experience with it?  Does yours bloom more than once a year?  Also I cannot find much detailed info on the culture of this species.  Does it seem to benefit from fertilization?  What kind?  How frequently?

This plant came from TT in Ft. Myers about a year ago.


Paul M.

Now with 'TS Elsa' about to bring a bunch of rain to us here in west central Florida, I am wondering how all that water may affect the ripening of my 'Ice Cream' mango fruit....  And whether it might cause any change in their flavor.

There are two fruit remaining hanging on my 6-ft tall plant, each about 3.5 to 4-inches in diameter, both still a pale green color.  Haven't seen any change in color of the skin of either fruit in the last days.  What should I be looking for as an incidator that these are ready to pick?

Anyone here in 9b growing 'Ice Cream' and have some observations on this, please...


Paul M.

(Sorry to have first posted this on FS & WTB)

'Mexicola Grande' Avocado ripening questions . . .

My 'Mexicola Grande' has set a couple dozen little fruit this season finally after two abortive years.  Tree is about 16-ft tall after 3.5 years in the ground.  Tree will get pruned back to about 8- to 10-ft after this first little crop ripens and is picked.

We are getting plenty of rain right now in Tampa where I am but that is now and not in Sept-Oct when 'Mexicola Grande' fruits are supposed to start ripening. At that time there may be more or less rain when the fruit starts to ripen.

So, since this is my first crop on this avocado what I would like to know from those of you growing MG here in west central Florida is:

1]  If it is rainy still when they start to ripen will that diminish their flavor in some way?

2]  Will this 1st-time crop (with the stated size of the tree) be more or less representative of the way this fruit should taste moving forward to subsequent years' crops?  I.e., should I expect the flavor to improve over the following years?

3]  When should I expect these 'Mexicola Grande' to usually start to ripen here in Tampa?  Anyone growing it in this area care to comment on this point?  When do yours ripen?


Paul M.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Mango flavor . . .
« on: June 16, 2021, 02:04:09 AM »
Is there such a thing as a basic, decent mango 'mango flavor' that is mango alone?  Maybe that could be better termed as a true, simple mango flavor.

I see all sorts of descriptive variations on the flavors of mangoes, including cultivar names which suggest a particular flavor variation: Lemon Zest, Orange Sherbet, Cotton Candy, et al.

Also I am reading on here that fertilizing (or not) and the weather can alter the flavor of some cultivars fron year to year.

So anyway, if there is a true simple basic mango flavor then which cultivars best represent that basic mango flavor?

I ask because I have not found this as the dedicated topic of discussion in any thread here.

Curious minds and all that . . . .

Paul M.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Garcinia hombroniana - question
« on: June 01, 2021, 01:52:51 AM »
Does anyone know for certain whether Garcinia hombroniana is synonymous with G. celebica? My research is inconclusive on this point.

And even if they are considered synonymous, are there any physiical differences because they are different regional races of the same species?

Enquiring minds and all that . . . .

Paul M.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Help - Is it too late to top my guava?
« on: May 28, 2021, 02:09:49 AM »
Is it too late to top my guava 'Ruby Supreme'?  It's gotten to about eight feet tall and the June bloom season is coming soon.

So, if I were to lop off about three to four feet off the top right now, leaving the plant about four or five feet tall, would it still fruit?  It has not begun to flower as of yet.

It's in sandy Florida soil with about six inches of leaf mulch over that.

Advice?  Suggestions?

Paul M.

How should ilama seeds be treated before planting for best germination, if:

1]  they are very recently harvested (within a mont or two), or . . .

2]  if they were harvested the previous season (like three or four months earlier)?

Is a hot water soak advised and allowing them to remain overnight soaking after the hot water has cooled down?

Or should they just be planted and trust to luck?

Enquiring minds and all that ...

Paul M.

I got a Eugenia stipitata last year from TT.  It grew well 'til this past cold season then got some leaf burn and lost the first few buds it was starting.

I understood that this species is supposed to bloom year round as long as it remains warm.  Now that it is warm again it's growing well but so far no buds or blooms.

To encourage blooming does this species benefit from fertilizing?  Or extra water?  Or a drying off period?  Or maybe it's just seasonal after all.

Anyone on here who's growing this species:  How do you get yours to bloom and set fruit for you?

Mine's in a 7-gallon pot and in mostly full sun.  Gets plenty of water.


Paul M.

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