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Messages - brian

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Citrus General Discussion / Re: Is There Light Around The Corner?
« on: August 01, 2014, 12:14:58 PM »
Is it cost-effective to commercially grow citrus in greenhouses?  I know there's a greenhouse tomato industry.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: flying dragon seedling death
« on: July 31, 2014, 12:34:32 PM »
swimmingfree, thank you for the offer but I think I will be okay with the number of survivors for now.  This is more of an experiment, but I'd like to know I can reliably grow rootstock in the future when my grafting skills improve.

Millet, I put osmocote plus in the small containers so they should have necessary nutrients.  The yellowing seems to be rather rapid, these were mostly green a week ago.  It looks like poor drainage or overheating but when I check after heavy rains they aren't damp at the bottom and I think I've been consistent with my watering.  I have also had poor outcomes with tomato and pepper seedlings once potted up.  I wonder if the 4:4:1-ratio mix peat/cedar/perlite might be inappropriate for seedlings?  Or just too many soil pathogens?

Citrus General Discussion / Re: flying dragon seedling death
« on: July 30, 2014, 11:40:28 PM »
Thanks, Millet.  I wasn't sure if this was an issue with citrus seedlings in general having low early survival or something I can control for.  Last year I was using mail order seed. This year I ordered two whole FD fruit.  Both were planted immediately into propagation trays into sterile seed-starting soil.  I re-use these trays, washing them with bleach-water first.  I plant a few seeds into each cell and put them on a heating pad, and cull all but the tallest after a few weeks.  Fairly soon I move them into larger pots but these I do not sterilize and they have been re-used many times.  A clear source of contamination but I was hoping the seedlings would be strong enough at this point to survive the more hostile environment.  I guess I'm too optimistic based on the abuse that larger trees can handle.

Citrus General Discussion / flying dragon seedling death
« on: July 30, 2014, 12:36:04 PM »
I planted twenty or so FD seedlings last year and again this year.  It seems that ~30% die off right after sprouting, and otherwise healthy seedlings randomly decline or die until only a small number remain.  The four that survived from last year are very healthy and green.  It looks like this year will be the same.

All were treated identically.  They're planted in the same cedar/peat/perlite mix as my larger trees and seem to have good drainage - there are holes in the bottom of the cups.  They get the same amount of water, sun, etc and shouldn't have ever dried out. 

Is this like damping off of tomcato/pepper seedlings?   Anything I can do to improve survival?  I really don't need many I was just growing them to eventually graft other varieties onto. 

These are last years survivors

And this years bunch.  A dozen already died over the past few months and there's more dead ones here.

I was actually looking for Shasta Gold when I ordered trees this spring but couldn't find them.  Maybe I will look again next year.  I know the Golden Nuggets are good.  I have a few fruit on my GN and I'm looking forward to seeing how they compare to store-bought.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Don't do what i did.!!!!
« on: July 23, 2014, 04:07:01 PM »
5 grams of 90% GA3.  Enough for a lifetime, I am guessing.  Unfortunately I don't have a scale so I haven't yet figured out how I am going to dilulte it to the proper concentration.  From what I read overdoing it can easily cause problems.  If you have any suggestions here I am all ears.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Don't do what i did.!!!!
« on: July 23, 2014, 01:40:05 PM »
I purchase GA3 solution from a local chemical supplier who markets their products to the commercial floral greenhouse industry. I purchase it in 1 pint bottles, which last me for some time.  If you cannot locate a supplier in your area, I would be happy to send some to you. - Millet

Thank you for the offer but I was able to find some mail order, though only in powder form.  Maybe this is standard.  In any case I hope it works out. 

Some were from Fourwinds so I assume Cuban Shaddock.  Others are on unknown rootstock, I bought them from Hope Depot or Lowes.  They are clearly grafted, though.

I can vouch for hort oil, also.  I have been using it to kill mealybugs that show up in the winter greenhouse.

After agressively bare-rooting some purchased trees a year ago many took 5 months or more to put out new growth.  Once they did it has been huge flushes ever since.  I no longer worry when trees haven't shown growth in a while so long as there are no signs of decline.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Don't do what i did.!!!!
« on: July 15, 2014, 02:43:45 PM »
I've accepted that I may get seedy fruit on the Page, but do you know of any GA3 sprays by name that I can order before things go in the greenhouse for the winter?  I would like to have this ready for any trees that bloom in there.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Don't do what i did.!!!!
« on: July 14, 2014, 12:17:33 PM »
I forgot Page is a tangelo.  Mine is blooming right now.  I briefly looked around online for a retail spray containing gibberellic acid but I can't find anything, only powder form and expensive bulk sprays.  Millet mentioned that some tomato bloom products contain this but I can't seem to find any or they aren't listing GA3 as an ingredient.  Anybody have any ideas?

I have enough bees around that I expect it will be pollinated anyway but some of my trees end up blooming in the greenhouse and so won't have this option.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Citrus & Temperatures
« on: July 10, 2014, 05:11:06 PM »
Brian, Kumquats require 80F to form flower buds. - Millet


Citrus General Discussion / Re: Citrus & Temperatures
« on: July 09, 2014, 10:18:18 PM »
80F for flower buds to form or for green fruit to ripen?

If the former it explains why mine didn't bloom until nearly July.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Citrus Breeding Center Opens
« on: July 08, 2014, 12:30:00 PM »
Is anybody breeding kumquats?  I don't see many varieties and most seem to exist as cold-tolerant inferior versions of more desired citrus. 

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Nippon Orangequat
« on: July 03, 2014, 12:17:45 AM »
They are all painted white on one side to keep the afternoon heat out.  I think Millet mentioned this a ways back and it definitely helps.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Nippon Orangequat
« on: July 02, 2014, 11:47:05 AM »
Yes, I will definitely report back.  I have quite a few varieties I have never actually tasted that are fruiting now.  I am looking forward to it.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Nippon Orangequat
« on: July 01, 2014, 02:58:40 PM »
The orangequat is blooming now so there's a good chance I will get to see what the fruit tastes like this winter.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Avoiding 'June Drop'
« on: July 01, 2014, 12:14:07 PM »
Thanks, I guess it isn't likely to affect me in my situation.   It gets hot in PA but not southern-desert hot

Citrus General Discussion / Avoiding 'June Drop'
« on: June 30, 2014, 03:12:51 PM »
My container citrus trees are in very low maintenance mode right now - there is osmocote plus in all containers and they get a mix of rainwater and long sprinkler watering.  Aside from occasionally killing ant infestations I don't really have to touch them.   I remember hearing about June Drop from the other forum as something that was an avoidable problem this time of year.  Is it just a matter of keeping the trees from drying out?  Anything in particular to watch out for?  My oranges have already set fruit, the kumquats are blooming, and the lemons/limes are ... both. 

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Miewa Kumquat
« on: June 26, 2014, 03:39:16 PM »
... unfortunately, i can't tell which side of the tree is the meiwa and which is the nagami.

robby, it seems to me that the meiwa leaves are noticeably smaller overall, and the nagami leaves are longer for a given width.   The difference is slight, though, and it could be just that my meiwa wasn't as healthy when it grew these leaves.


Nordman Seedless Nagami:

I had heard that letting plants sway in the wind builds strong trunks so I always stake just long enough for the roots to establish and then I remove the stakes. 

I didn't know about the lower leaves being important, though.  I generally pinch off any growth low on the trunk for my taller tree-form plants.  This is mostly because I have a mix of tree and bush-form trees and I can cram more of them in a row if the canopies are staggered high/low.  Adjacent root pruning pots sort of lock together when touching so it keeps the wind from blowing individual trees over.   I guess the question is:  if you know a branch will be heavily shaded is it better to pinch it off entirely or let it survive?

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Xie Shan Satsuma Trees
« on: June 25, 2014, 02:46:06 PM »
Xie Shan arrived today.   There were some delays because Harris only seems to have biweekly USDA inspections that are required for their shipments.  The tree looks very healthy and arrived undamaged.

I was originally planning on getting two but I am starting to worry that I am expanding my collection too quickly... I need to be sure I can care for everything efficiently over the winter.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Miewa Kumquat
« on: June 24, 2014, 03:35:09 PM »
The only kumquats I've ever seen for sale were Nagamis.  They are very sour and sort of astringent but I love them.  Nobody else I've offered them to seem to like them.  I don't have any true Nagami trees but I have Nordman Seedless which tastes about the same.

The exotic plant nursery near my house has some very old citrus on display that are in something like 2.5ft diameter by 3ft tall containers - ~30gal?  The trees themselves are about 9ft tall.  These are actually what got me interested in growing container citrus.  Over the years these old trees seem to be doing worse and worse, and have been mostly butchered for rooted cuttings that are sold there.  It is kind of sad to see.  I think they've given up on them.

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