Author Topic: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?  (Read 927 times)

sc4001992

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Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« on: October 27, 2021, 02:31:27 AM »
Anyone here growing starfuit (Carambola) ? I'm thinking of planting one tree but was not sure if there is a good reason to grow it.

I bought a few fruits from the market and it was not sweet, so not sure how you are suppose to eat it.  I have a few questions for those who like it and grow this fruit tree:

-Is there any health benefit in eating it?
-How do you eat the fruit ?

I noticed these fruits were pretty expensive at the market, don't know why. I saw this tree with all these fruits so I am considering getting a plant.











bovine421

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #1 on: October 27, 2021, 05:08:53 AM »
I let others recommend varieties but for me it's all about the juice. It makes excellent juice. Do not judge it by what you buy at the store
https://www.pachakam.com/recipes/starfruit-juice-the-perfect-summer-refreshment
Tete Nene Julie Little Gem Pickering Dot Sonpari Mallika PPK E-4 OS Phoenix Fruit Punch SweetTart Honey Kiss M-4 Neelam Lychee Guava  Atemoya Sugar Apple Soursop Citrus Plantain Barbados Cherry

achetadomestica

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #2 on: October 27, 2021, 07:05:07 AM »
The fruit definitely comes in bunches twice a year on my tree.
If I wait until my fruit turns dark orange it is very sweet. I prefer it
a little green with a little acid with the sweetness. One way to store the fruit
is to dehydrate it. It makes a very chewy treat.

pineislander

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #3 on: October 27, 2021, 07:58:36 AM »
It is a very fragile fruit so all of it that gets shipped are picked hard green. That is why storebought fruit has very poor flavor. The ripe fruit is good. One of the largest producing farms is just down the street from me. They pick green fruit daily for many weeks but eventually the fruit on the trees gets too ripe to ship. At that point they pull all the ripe fruit off the trees and throw it down. I caught the sight and took a picture:



Flgarden

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #4 on: October 27, 2021, 08:51:07 AM »
Here, people say: a one starfruit tree will feed you, your family, your neighbors and co-workers.
I have Kari variety. It gets deep orange color, large fruit, very sweet, fruits twice a year from size of 3ft, loaded with fruits and flowers now. I never liked them from stores until i tried from someone's garden. Huge difference.
Ana

sc4001992

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #5 on: October 27, 2021, 09:24:56 AM »
Bovine421, thanks for the juice idea. That will be a good way for me to drink it since I love citrus fruits and have many varieties. I can use my Smith Red valencia orange for the juice mix.

It sounds like many people are growing it and like the taste. I know the ones I bought from the market wasn't sweet so it must have been picked green/yellow and not at peak ripeness. Maybe I will go back and pick one ripe fruit and try it.

I will need to get rid of a few mulberry trees in ground and plant one of these startfruits. Thanks everyone for your feedback.

sc4001992

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2021, 09:31:14 AM »
pineislander, that's a lot of nice looking fruit they have. Do they make use of those fruits by selling it at a fruit stand or making juice ?

FV Fruit Freak

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2021, 12:51:05 PM »
Hey Kaz hereís a pic of my Fwang Tung. Itís flowering and holding small fruit right now. It grows well here and the fruit is great. It also has a really nice star shape that my kids love. I have read there is something in carambola that can damage your kidneys, but I think its only if you have a pre-existing condition, and I think you have to eat a lot of it and itís only on the edge of the fruit, so if you cut that part off itís safe to eat. I got my tree from Emily Nursery in Santa Ana, I havenít been there in a while but he usually has a nice selection of carambola trees, talk to Mike.





Nate

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #8 on: October 27, 2021, 01:10:00 PM »
Carambola are great producers, and anywhere lemon or orange is used in a recipe carambola can make a very good substitute. The juice on ripe fruit is great provided you take off any green tips, and also I skin and core them too before juicing. A bit home made of sugar syrup added and you're off to a great AM drink.
Regards,

   Gary

sc4001992

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #9 on: October 27, 2021, 03:07:11 PM »
Nate, thanks for the heads up on the possible kidney issues, I will remember that when I eat it. I will need to look for the Fwang Tung at the nursery.

Can anyone tell me if the yellow fruits on the photos I posted above is ripe yet or should I wait another week before I go back and try one fruit?

johnb51

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #10 on: October 27, 2021, 03:16:47 PM »
Some of them look ripe.  Don't some varieties retain a bit of green even when ripe?  Sri Kembangan, which I had, would turn 100% orange so it was easy to tell.  It was never a favorite fruit for me--I'd give it a 6 out of ten--but definitely worth growing.
John

LuvFig

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #11 on: October 27, 2021, 04:00:36 PM »
Among the cultivars of Fwang Tung, Kari and Sri Kembangan, which is the sweetest and taste best ?  If someone can provide a reference on the "sweetness" like the brix or compare to other fruits, would be greatly appreciated.

All the Best,
Grace

shaneatwell

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #12 on: October 27, 2021, 06:38:45 PM »
There's cooking star fruits and eating star fruits. I think grocery stores mostly carry the former. A ripe star fruit is a lovely fruit.
Shane

kapps

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #13 on: October 27, 2021, 07:43:51 PM »
The different varieties will vary not only in sweetness but also in flavor. Iíve had some carambola that have an orange taste and others that have a lemon/lime taste. I have a Sri Kembangan that is too young to fruit growing in my yard. Its supposed to have a lemon/lime taste. None of the varieties that I have tried give the immediate flavor explosion of citrus but the good ones have a slightly watered down citrusy taste.

One other thing that I have to say about carambola is that they have a toxin in them that is dangerous to anyone with kidney problems. Itís not an issue for most people as our kidneys filter it out and they do have lots of good vitamins and minerals but itís something to know just in case.

digigarden

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #14 on: October 27, 2021, 09:27:34 PM »
i have a tree grown from supermarket fruit years ago. seedling was in a bag then forgot about..a worker pulled the seedling and threw it away then it grew back from the roots. it produces lot of large fruit and very sweet  :) it's more fruit than we can use so when it falls to the ground i use it for compost.
My fruit seeds-selling/trading thread
https://tropicalfruitforum.com/index.php?topic=46703.0

sbtropic

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #15 on: October 27, 2021, 09:55:48 PM »
Oxalate is a compound found in very high concentration in star fruit., Excess consumption has been linked to gout and kidney stones. I have heard that some varieties of Star fruit are lower in oxalate than others. So it might be good to find one that is lower.

sc4001992

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #16 on: October 27, 2021, 10:02:32 PM »
I read the issues with excess oxalate, not good. Maybe I will skip growing this fruit tree. Back to more loquats instead.

sbtropic

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #17 on: October 27, 2021, 10:23:47 PM »
I have one that flowers but has never fruited. It is a beautiful and interesting tree with small pink flowers. I look at it out the window and appreciate it. So I am happy I have it.

Jaboticaba45

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #18 on: October 27, 2021, 10:55:40 PM »
I read the issues with excess oxalate, not good. Maybe I will skip growing this fruit tree. Back to more loquats instead.
All I gotta say is that loquats tasted 100x better than all the starfruits I have ever tried, even ones fresh off the tree from FL. I heard that most of the oxalic acid goes away when fully ripe and once the wings are cut off, there is very little left.

pineislander

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #19 on: October 27, 2021, 11:17:38 PM »
pineislander, that's a lot of nice looking fruit they have. Do they make use of those fruits by selling it at a fruit stand or making juice ?
No they pull off the fruit and let it rot. This is Brooks Tropicals a major wholesaler. Likely much of US production comes from the 40 acre farm.

SHV

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #20 on: October 27, 2021, 11:19:00 PM »
I have a Fwang Tung that I purchased from Ong Nursery four years back.  I was very hesitant about planting it in the ground considering a large number of comments online warned against planting it in the inland areas of SoCA due to the extreme dry summer heat and Santa Ana winds.  I went ahead and planted that bad boy in the ground in full sun, exposed to the elements.  It has grown like a champ, up to 10 feet tall, consistently producing loads of fruit in late fall. I never get a spring crop even though it flowers every spring, but the fall harvest and fruit quality is worth having it around.

MotherOfDragonfruit

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #21 on: October 28, 2021, 03:37:23 PM »
I have a starfruit tree and the fruits are much sweeter than you get at the store because you can ripen them on the tree. This does not work well for stores because the fruit bruise easily when they are ripe and this would happen in transit. Same with dragonfruit... Bland at the store but sweet when vine ripened in my backyard.

Starfruit trees grow fast! Out of all our fruit trees it was fastest growing and quickest to fruit. It makes more and more fruit each year. Now we can't give away enough or eat them fast enough. Finally picked the last one and the tree is full or flowers again! So it can fruit more than once per year.

They are sweet to eat fresh. Also can be put fresh or frozen into smoothies as a base and mix well with any other type of fruit. Any bruised or excess fruit I slice and remove seeds and put in gallon baggy in freezer. Unripe or ripe fruit can be cut into slices and added as you cook up fajitas. My mom made several batches of starfruit jam which tastes like a cross between apple and strawberry and was a reddish brown color. Starfruit makes a fruit salad look pretty with stars.

I have had no pests or disease bother this tree. Low maintenance. No worms in the fruit (like my papaya and loquat problems). Handles low temps fine once established in Florida zone 9b.

As for the oxalates, what you hear about kidney problems from starfruit usually refers to people currently with chronic kidney disease. As a dieititian, I tell my kidney patients to avoid this fruit. I can tell you from experience we eat lots of starfruit in our family and this should not affect healthy individuals.

roblack

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #22 on: October 28, 2021, 05:11:18 PM »
We have a Kari tree that seems to have ripe fruit most of the year. Fruit is mild, semi sweet, but tasty and refreshing. Split one just an hour ago, was quite nice.

Not a fruit that I would gorge on like mangoes or poms, but great to have around. Nice to have a few slices as garnish with breakfast, salad, etc.

My friend makes chutney and juice out of them.

K-Rimes

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Re: Starfruit- Anyone Growing It ?
« Reply #23 on: October 28, 2021, 05:34:32 PM »
I have a kari that barely survived my 9b winter in just frost cloth, it did much better in the greenhouse I built last year but still has some issues. I tried it outside in the open sun and it didn't like that at all. It finally is happy and has a canopy again and is flowering for the first time. I bought another kari that was on sale at Champa and put it beside it in the greenhouse. It lost every single leaf on the way home in my truck bed (laid down) but so did the first one.

Not an easy grower for me but I hope to get fruit off the larger / older kari I have.

 

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