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This year I started actively picking them Aug 15 when the last of my other mangos were finished. About 10 percent of crop came off the tree before then. Peak season was last week of Aug til Sept 10, but still had several dozen on tree at that point.Looks like I can now count on fruit pretty much the whole month of September from Little Gem. I think I might sometimes get a few fruit into October some years in the future. There  are still some Keitts on trees locally. Any other mangos still hanging in Florida?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Fabric for frost protection
« on: February 16, 2022, 08:32:13 AM »
This year at my location we suffered the first light frost in at least 7 years but very little damage. When I lived in the Charleston,SC area , I overwintered peppers and tomatoes by covering them with blankets and mulch. We had lows into the high teens Fahrenheit maybe once or twice a Winter, with several dips below 25. The tomatoes and peppers had damage but recovered. I think fabric can be very helpful to reduce the severity of cold damage,and completely protect up to some point. What if you could cover a full sized yet compact mango tree,say 10-12 feet by 10-12 feet fairly easily with one of these? Or double them up and combine with irrigation of the ground?

I would think a canvas parachute might work better than synthetic, has anyone tried using parachutes?
Personally I don't really need to worry much about cold damage where I am now, but I have a lot of experience in zone pushing when I lived in South Carolina and I thought old parachutes might be a good idea to at least consider. Maybe you could use a kerosene lantern or a few candles under the tree for a bit of additional heat that could get trapped under the parachute.

Dwarf Hawaiian and Maha Chanok are almost in bloom for me in Cape Coral.
Looks like Edgar is just starting to push some buds that I think will be bloom.
Last time it started pushing this time of year, it just kept blooming off and on. I was eating Edgar from late April until early August.
 Anyone else have bloom yet? This will be the fourth time in 7 years that Maha has produced off season fruit. I have has Dec/Jan fruit and twice March/April in addition to the normal July main season.It likes to bloom when weather changes. We had a cool spell of a few nights in low 50s followed by a rain and that seemed to be enough. Oddly enough,when my Maha trees were young their first fruit were from off season bloom. Maybe this is why it keeps happening,does the tree remember it fruited successfully at that time of year? I remember a lot of hype about Chok Anon producing off season fruit, but Maha Chanok is doing it pretty regularly for me. Tastes better too....

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Papayas without the vomit taste
« on: November 20, 2021, 07:39:23 AM »
I Finally found one, it was sold labeled as Red Lady. Since Papayas are grown from seed there can be variations even if they generally are true to type. Got lucky with this one.
I planted it at my Uncle's place in Cape Coral and it is loading up with fruit that are larger than the descriptions I have seen for that variety. Relatively low seed number, but it is an isolated plant. Very pleasant and sweet with less musk than a cantaloupe.  Some are a pound and a half and are seedless, others over 5 lbs with seeds. They must be very low in Papain. I am going to plant some seeds. Red Lady is supposed to be virus tolerant.
Any other varieties that are low in Papain? Does Tainung have funky flavor?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Apples in hot, humid climates
« on: June 22, 2021, 07:51:24 AM »
There was a recent post on apples in Florida, I figured the topic deserves its own thread for those in similar climates. I do not think the Dorsett Golden and Anna are any good.
I grew apples for nearly 20 years on the coastal Plain of South Carolina. Lots of heat, humidity and fungal pressure, actually worse than my present location in Cape Coral.
 Summers there were sweltering with little air movement. Hard to think of a more hostile place to grow apples.
 I spent a couple years researching any and all apple varieties known to tolerate heat and humidity. I tried to grow well over 100 varieties, fruiting about 25 or so more than once. Dorsett Golden and Anna were both garbage, the fruit could not take the heat and humidity. Most apple trees themselves grew fine but not the fruit. I found that tolerance to heat, humidity, and fungal rots were much more important than chill hours. In the nearly 20 years I was there, chill hours ranged from about 450 to 850 at my farm in St. George, SC. On the plus side, the only insect pest was the plum curculio which only caused cosmetic damage.
 Apples can be grown at altitude in the tropics if they are defoliated with urea after cropping, that stimulates bloom. I attended a lecture at a fruit growers meeting in one of the Gulf coast states given by someone growing them.(red delicious) He grew them in the South Pacific at 5000-7000 feet of altitude not far from the equator. That is not a low chill cultivar and is the apple equivalent of a Tommy Atkins mango.
 I found that lack of chill extends bloom periods. This means drought followed by rain can stimulate bloom. Sometimes a period of cooler weather during the Summer/Fall can also do this. Mangos can sometimes throw a few off season bloom too, this is not unique to apples.  Some apples bloomed several times a year. You might never get a full bloom if chill is insufficient, but you will still probably get some fruit. One variety, Carolina Red June, even sometimes matured 2 crops in a year.( fruit was small, mediocre and mealy, don't plant it.)   
Extended and inconsistent bloom is bad for commercial growers on spray schedules, but not an issue for home growers.  Most of the low chill varieties I tried never completely defoliated in Winter unless we had a really hard freeze below about 15 degrees F.
Aside from fungal rots, internal breakdown is a major problem for most apples ripening in hot weather. Several varieties fruited fairly well but had mealy texture. William's Pride had bad breakdown. The only mealy apple that tasted pretty good despite the texture was Arkcharm. The only mealy apples I ever actually enjoyed eating.
The other problems on varieties that can fruit in hot climates are bitter pit and watercore. If you ever ate a bitter but otherwise beautiful Braeburn apple, it had bitter pit.
Water core is actually a treat for home grower. It is actually clear circular areas of flesh up to about quarter size that are SUPER sweet, brix off the charts. It shortens shelf life a lot, so that pretty much eliminates many varieties from large scale commercial consideration.
I grew the best Gala apples ever for a year or two but that variety needs CONSTANT spraying or the fruit will rot.  Even then, I lost a lot. I gave up on it, be warned... That variety ticks off all the boxes except for its extreme susceptibility to rotting. Would probably grow great in a desert, it can take triple digits while ripening without breakdown. Water core, yes, but fruit was not mealy.
Pink Lady is one of my favorite apples to eat and the only one I actually buy at the stores. It was nearly a perfect tree and was low chill but rarely held more than a few fruit to maturity despite plenty of pollen. The few fruit that were held, never sized well. It ticked off almost all of the boxes except for productivity. Fuji was unproductive as well as susceptible to rot and bitter pit.
One surprise was Bramley's seedling. It was one of the heathiest trees. Great Britain's best cooking apple, but very acidic and not eaten out of hand there. When I grew it, it had a nearly perfect sugar-acid balance. I bet the brix was close to 20. It was intensely sweet and subacid. An Englishman would probably drop dead of shock eating one like that. I am sure it never ever attained that level of quality in the British Isles. I do wonder how it would perform in Australia if anyone can chime in on that. The tree itself is triploid and seemed immune to fungal problems. Fruit needed minimal spraying since it was late maturity. My goat herd killed that tree when they got into the orchard so I only fruited it twice.
Pristine was also a big surprise. Small, Golden Delicious type. Extended bloom period and very disease resistant. At my farm it started ripening July 4th and season was over a month long. One year it reached 100 degrees F at my farm almost every day for the entire ripening period.  A very nice apple, there was some watercore but the fruit was crisp despite the extreme temperatures. Sometimes had partial bloom later in Summer but did not mature 2 crops.
One benefit of high temperatures in apples that can ripen fruit without breakdown is that brix can be off the charts. Most commercial apples are lucky to hit the mid teens, but a lot of apples I grew were over 20 most years.
For a large Golden type, I would recommend trying Ozark Gold. Eating a huge one with water core was a real treat. I tried a bunch of California apples, none of them really did well.
One class of apples that did well are Russets. American Golden Russet did the least well of that class but was still a high quality fruit.  Any of them are worth a trial. Hudson's Golden Gem and Brown Russet were very nice and were August to early September apples at that location.
 I tried a bunch of Japanese varieties, most took the heat but had high susceptibility to rots. You might not be able to grow apples as a commodity in a subtropical/ tropical climate, but if you are determined and pick the right varieties, you can probably grow some of your own apples. I had planned a pick your own/roadside market and would have been successful if the black bears would have gone away. They were protected and the wildlife people did not designate a bear as a problem for relocation or removal unless it was out and about causing trouble during the daytime. Even one bear can do a lot of damage.
 I would try to root a very disease resistant variety in a stooling bed to use as rootstock if I were to start over.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Maki Mavi avocado any info?
« on: March 17, 2021, 05:49:55 AM »
Saw some small trees for sale at Fruitscapes yesterday but couldn't get info on its season or characteristics. Has anyone heard of it?

Citrus General Discussion / Cold protection
« on: February 13, 2021, 09:33:10 AM »
I answered a post in the tropical fruit section with this reply and thought it might be useful here too :

Multiple candles or sterno burners(only 2 hour burn time for those) could work in a pinch but kerosene lanterns are ideal IMO because the flame is adjustable, it won't get blown out by wind, or catch things on fire as easily. They also supposedly will go out and won't start a fire if tipped over.
I used Dietz kerosene lanterns to protect citrus when I lived in South Carolina. Keep in mind they need oxygen to continue burning but covering a tree usually will allow enough air leakage for it to continue burning. I might suggest several of the smallest sizes on the ground in a triangle around the tree instead of one larger one depending on space under cover. Got to make sure you don't melt or burn whatever you are using as a cover or cook the tree.
Kerosene lanterns can be used in a greenhouse as well overnight but will fill it with Co2 so allow to vent completely before re-entering or you may die. (even if it is still burning the Co2 level might be toxic)  It is a trick you can use to increase plant growth by enriching the greenhouse with Co2 when not used for cold protection.
 They put out enough heat to heat a can of beans or fry an egg in a small pan albeit slowly like using a low heat setting on a cooktop stove.We improvised a vented cover to make the top flat. They used to make a model that could be used specifically for that purpose that had a flat top attachment. We had a hot meal during an ice storm years ago but it took a couple hours to feed 5 that way. We always took lanterns out to wait for the school bus with the kids in the mornings at the farm and they were great for warming hands a few inches above the top of the lantern.

Cold Hardy Citrus / Cold protection
« on: February 13, 2021, 09:31:35 AM »
I answered a post in the tropical fruit section with this reply and thought it might be useful here too :

Multiple candles or sterno burners(only 2 hour burn time for those) could work in a pinch but kerosene lanterns are ideal IMO because the flame is adjustable, it won't get blown out by wind, or catch things on fire as easily. They also supposedly will go out and won't start a fire if tipped over.
I used Dietz kerosene lanterns to protect citrus when I lived in South Carolina. Keep in mind they need oxygen to continue burning but covering a tree usually will allow enough air leakage for it to continue burning. I might suggest several of the smallest sizes on the ground in a triangle around the tree instead of one larger one depending on space under cover. Got to make sure you don't melt or burn whatever you are using as a cover or cook the tree.
Kerosene lanterns can be used in a greenhouse as well overnight but will fill it with Co2 so allow to vent completely before re-entering or you may die. (even if it is still burning the Co2 level might be toxic)  It is a trick you can use to increase plant growth by enriching the greenhouse with Co2 when not used for cold protection.
 They put out enough heat to heat a can of beans or fry an egg in a small pan albeit slowly like using a low heat setting on a cooktop stove.We improvised a vented cover to make the top flat. They used to make a model that could be used specifically for that purpose that had a flat top attachment. We had a hot meal during an ice storm years ago but it took a couple hours to feed 5 that way. We always took lanterns out to wait for the school bus with the kids in the mornings at the farm and they were great for warming hands a few inches above the top of the lantern.

Still having trouble getting on the forum. Keep getting server not found errors when I try to use directly on several browsers.  Seems like the only way I can get on now is by using the link from Facebook. It was working doing that for a while but Facebook is now wanting me to sign up for an account.  I refuse to do that so I might be done with the forum soon if I can't reliably get online. Which browser will work? I was already online on one device to make this post, but can't get on with any others.

I am looking to fill the relative fruit void during the Winter/Spring months in South Florida. I think the best thing I can do is try the Fruit and Spice Park for some ideas. Odds are good that we will find a little known fruit the family likes... We are planning to go on Saturday or Sunday. Might stop at nurseries in the area on the way back if we try something the family decides we must have. Open to suggestions on which ones to stop at as well as which to avoid as time will be limited. Curious about guavas with thick skin, soft or minimal seeds, and insect resistance that might have some fruit during the cooler months. (if they exist)
 I get some bananas, sapodillas, and starfruit already year round and will have more and more sapodillas as my trees grow but that will take several more years for significant production. My Dad has a mature black sapote so I get some fruit from that most of the cooler months.
I am determined to have at least some success with avocados in the future.
I got some mulberry cuttings recently and have a bunch of Grafted Surinam cherries black and red cultivars.
l also got a Thai giant thornless Jujube. Fruit is like a bland apple but has great crunchy texture and is refreshing. The family likes it so I have one planted that is setting fruit at the end of its first year in the ground. I remember eating some at ECHO a few years back during the Spring. Hopefully I can have several types of fruit in the future during the months without mangos.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Dwarf mango rootstock project
« on: September 10, 2020, 08:58:47 PM »
 I enjoyed reading a recent thread about potential for breeding dwarf mangoes with some early anecdotal results pictured.
  Wouldn't it be nice if there was a choice of getting a tree grafted on a root that dwarfs any given moderate to large growing variety 50-60 percent?
Planting polyembryonic seeds from a smallish variety to graft from is a possibility, but if the nursery grafts onto the wrong shoot then who knows what size tree you end up with. It just seems to my eye that poly varieties seem less sturdy as trees, maybe I am wrong but it is just the impression I get.

I think another approach could be to select varieties that are known to be dwarf(ish) that are also:

1.  Disease resistant

2.  Precocious
3.  Productive
4.  Well anchored with good structure and strong branches that aren't brittle or TOO bendy either.   At least in Florida we realistically need semi-dwarf and not ultra dwarf trees because of hurricane winds.

5. Root easily from stem cuttings

Then skip the step of growing out "relatively uniform" seedlings that may not be.

The varieties that make the above hypothetical list should then be tested to see which of them will root easiest from cuttings. One alternate possibility is to dig up roots and do piece root grafting, that is grafting a scion on to a piece of root instead of a whole tree. It saves space and works well on apples, why not mango?
 It is commonly done with apples when propagation material is limited.
Say only one out of a half dozen mango varieties tested roots easily, that is enough to start a trial.
 Then you have a clonal rootstock, all the cuttings are genetically identical. It follows that performance of a given scion grafted on it should be predictably uniform at least in the same location.
Varieties used as rootstock will probably dwarf scions grafted on them about to the extent of the size of the original mother tree compared to the average for the species. This hold fairly true on other tree fruits as a general rule.
If a variety considered dwarfish or compact might reach 15 feet in 10-15 years vs a vigorous variety  that might reach 30+ feet, that 50% dwarfing is significant, especially if you want trees around 15 feet or less in a smaller yard.
 Just as an example, suppose you liked Valencia Pride and could live with a 20(ish) foot tree but not a 50 foot tall tree. Hypothetically, if you grafted it onto a mango like Pickering or Honey Kiss or Little Gem, maybe you end up with a moderate sized tree. If you graft a moderately vigorous scion variety instead, maybe it stays under 20 feet for a long time. A less vigorous tree might stay at 10-12 feet while it might otherwise eventually be 20+ feet on a standard size Turpentine seedling rootstock. Ideally we want a rootstock that produces clean disease free fruit itself if not grafted. Not sure if Turpentine is really ideal. I wonder if a disease resistant dwarfish rootstock would impart resistance to say BBS or powdery mildew to scions that are vulnerable and keep the trees manageable in size. That is really the million dollar question......

This is something that could be tested easily with lots of real data by forum members within a few years. Cuttings could be taken now and grafted next Spring or even sooner. 50 cuttings could be rooted in one or two clear plastic totes. Then you graft say 5 or 10 of each scion and see what happens. I think forum members would be excited to report good results, but even failures can be learned from.
 Clonal rootstocks used for other tree fruits like apples are known to affect bloom time,dormancy length,branching habit, cold hardiness, fruit size (sometimes 50% larger) , yield, brix, precociousness, and to some extent even disease resistance of scions grafted on them. A lot of the clonal apple rootstocks are propagated in stooling beds. You take a tree,cut it back,  partially uproot it, lay it on its side, mound up soil, and dig up rooted shoots months later.
  I think mango shoots of an appropriate size and thickness could just be cut from the tree, rooted fairly easily ,and then grafted after rooting before potting them up or direct planting them.
 What varieties do you think should be candidates for use as rootstock?  I nominate Pickering, Honey Kiss, and Little Gem. Neelam?  Maybe one size up from those too? Glenn? Young? Suggestions?  Feel free to point out problems in my line of thinking....

It has been an early mango season this year that apparently also ended early at least in Southeast Florida. My Dad's Valencia Prides in North Ft Myers were done by mid July this year,usually a few hold til at least the 10th of August so maybe SW Florida also is about done.
 I still have Little Gem hanging in Southwest Florida and have seen a few Keitt trees still holding a lot of fruit. I am trying to see how long Little Gem will hold this year but am fighting a losing battle with the animals. I have less than a dozen fruit left and The Possums are getting one or two almost every night. I have resorted to scattering apples and starfruit on the ground to try to keep them out of my tree. It seems I am catching one almost every night and relocating them alive far enough away that they won't come back.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Cotton Candy mango can be coconutty too...
« on: August 09, 2020, 05:53:35 PM »
I just ate my last Cotton Candy of the season because it was getting pecked at (perfectly tree ripe) and was surprised it had a fairly strong coconut flavor.
 Stronger coconut flavor than Pickering and almost as strong as Coconut Cream.
 The Cotton Candy fruit from Mid June onwards all had at least a hint of coconut but later in the season it was a lot stronger. Don't count this one out if you like a coconut flavor in a late mango. The earlier season fruit were ripening a little unevenly but this one was perfect. Late season Keitts can have a hint of coconut but not this strong. I think the coconut flavor genes came from its Keitt parent.

Wondering what ground cover plants people have had the most success with in South Florida. I don't have a sprinkler system and have limited amounts of reverse osmosis  water to use.  Mulch seems to either dry out too fast or absorb too much of my precious RO water.
Will doing this stunt the growth of shallow rooted trees like sapodilla?
Mangos don't seem to mind small plants under them but my first thought is I don't think grass is a good idea. I have left a few weeds that might be suitable grow under a few trees.
 Ideally I would like something drought resistant, 6 - 12 inches tall or less, nitrogen fixers would be ideal.
Usable herbs or veggies a bonus.
 Would some type of peas work during the cooler season as an annual?
I have tried perennial peanut recently but rabbits ate it to nubs. Moved the peanut in with larger potted trees out of the reach of rabbits.
Would rather use a living green mulch.

Blue Java AKA  Ice Cream Banana suckers/Corms FREE you dig Cape Coral. $5 each if I have to dig them.
 I plan on eliminating it from my yard to make space for something else. It is TOO prolific.
 I have about 8 nice sword suckers and about a half dozen large corms. If you don't dig suckers regularly and thin the mat, in a few years it will get too dense to manage. Optional exchange of some of your surplus plants/fruit appreciated if it is something I don't have and would like.
This variety is a heavy producing good banana excellent for the impatient grower since it bears quickly.
 It is relatively drought resistant and grows 15-20 feet tall, the only faults really are that it produces too many pups that need to be dug and replanted upright. If they are left alone and are not vertical, they have a tendency to lean more and more, sometimes falling if a heavy fruit bunch is unsupported.
 I planted one sucker the week after Irma and starting less than a year later began harvesting about 8 bunches  a bunch at a time ( I do not have a sprinkler system) Every few months another bunch is ready.
 The mat is getting too big even though I recently tried to thin it out.  I also have Pisang Ceylon, Pisang Raja, a few Goldfinger (FHIA-01), Raja-Puri and a few Mona Lisa (FHIA-02) available. Western Cape Coral near Matlacha.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Banana Crunch Jackfruit ?
« on: March 02, 2020, 06:06:26 AM »
Does anyone have info about this variety? I have seen a few trees for sale near me. My yard is nearly out of spaces for new trees, BUT if the taste lives up to that name I might want to try planting one...

My 19 Yr old accidentally swallowed one about 5 minutes ago.
 I know some tropical seeds can be very toxic and there is nothing I can find online about toxicity for this species.

My tree is bearing its first crop of two fruit.
The fruit have been going from green to an even yellowish brown but there is NO aroma at all.
I bought this variety because it was supposed to have a mild, sweet aroma and relatively cold hardy.
Can anyone that has fruited this variety advise me on when to harvest?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Just had a perfect Little Gem mango
« on: August 07, 2018, 01:15:49 PM »
I planted the tree last year as a 3 gal and it held 11 fruit this year.
I have very poor soil at my place in Cape Coral. Tree is very healthy and looks like it will stay small.
 I have about 50% mortality of young mango trees at my place,anything that survives has decent fungal tolerance.
 I planted it in a spot that a 2 year old lemon meringue had slowly declined and succumbed previously from some sort of some fungal dieback.
  I  tried picking a few almost a month ago that ripened decently after about 10 days, but they were definitely picked too early.
At that stage they tasted like a firmer Carrie. Carrie is my least favorite mango. I would never buy one, and only eat them when there is no other local mango available at the time. My dad has a tree and won't let me topwork it....
 I picked a Little Gem fruit 4 days ago and tried it today, it was amazing. Complex with strong coconut pineapple and fresh orange juice flavors, maybe a hint of apricot, a great sugar acid balance and medium soft texture. Juicy too. It has a bit of resin flavor too closest to the peel, not a lot but it is detectable.
 Blew Edgar away, at least in my yard. Edgar was pretty good though and came in about a month ago, I had 5 fruit this year on a 3 gal I planted last year.
 Some fiber clung to the seed of Little Gem.
 When I slice a mango the way I do, it minimizes the appearance of any fiber.
It looks like a Julie, is it a Julie seedling? Maybe it would be a good alternative to Julie, the fruit I had today was similar to a Julie I ate a couple years ago.
 It had  Little Gem 29-26 on the label when I bought the tree last year.
 I was expecting an average flavor from what little information is out there , but my son thought it was the best mango of the year and I think I agree with him. It has been very rainy lately and it was not washed out. Fruit was not big but the seed is the smallest and thinnest I have seen.
 I have 3 fruit left on the tree, I will see how long they hold. hoping they make it at least a few more weeks.  I am very glad I bought the tree,so far it really is a Little Gem....


I planted this tree about 6 months ago into the ground, I got a reduced price since it had some damage to trunk about 3 feet off the ground. It has been slowly healing over, if I leave it alone in a year or so it should be healed up. It has replaced most of its leaves since planting and actively growing from the tips. It has been blooming almost continuously but not setting fruit yet.
  I am more concerned about the leggy growth habit. I am wondering if the tree will put out vigorous growth if it is cut back severely. I tipped the growth at the top of the tree hoping to get more branching but nothing happened in over a month so I just took off about 3 feet from the top before taking this picture. It seems like there are no visible buds on older wood and I am afraid to hack away at existing branches unless I am told it will be ok. Was thinking about cutting most of the branches back about halfway or more, hoping to get more branching to fill the empty spaces, but after no regrowth from tipping the top, am now unsure.
 Would I be better off just cutting back the main trunk to below the damaged area at around 3 foot height? If it is better than having a top heavy tree in the future I am patient enough to amputate the top half of the tree....
Tree is now about 9 feet tall.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / How early does the "Zill" mango ripen?
« on: February 14, 2017, 01:25:36 PM »
I am still undecided about an early season "workhorse" mango. I have recently planted an Edward, 2 Pickerings, a Cogshall , a Mun Kun Si, Fruit Punch, 2 Maha Chanoks , and have Peach Cobbler, Venus, Beverly, and Keitt as later season trees. I had a pot-bound Duncan that did not survive transplanting that needs to be replaced. I have a Lemon Meringue that has mostly just sat for 2 years in the ground that has one more year to at least flush some growth before I get rid of it. I will save a spot for Guava and one for Frances Hargrave. I will probably plant a Glenn as the early season workhorse unless Zill is a good alternative.If Glenn wasn't so washed out with all the rain last year, (Valencia Pride was a disappointment too last Summer) I would probably have planted one already.
I will probably get some fruit most years before June from my other trees, but I would like a tree that would flood me with mangos while the others are starting to trickle in.
 From the descriptions, Zill seems to be a decent enough mango if it can be done by mid June when the better stuff ripens in quantity.
 From scattered bits of information I gather that it produces well ,has a bit of pineapple flavor, and can ripen in May,June and possibly into July. Another source said it has a tendency to ripen all of its fruit within about a 3 week period.If it is freestone as one source says that would be a plus. It would be great if it could be all harvested by mid June.
 By then, some of the others I know we like will be producing enough to keep my ravenous family happy.
  Zill doesn't seem to be propagated much now with all the hype around the newer varieties but I found one tree available nearby. Some of the sweetest and best women aren't in the fanciest wrappers....Same with mangoes.Some of the best of both species don't get the love they deserve.. It is Valentine's day after all! Make your ladies happy today.... ;D
 Should I get a Glenn or the Zill? Or Florigon? My first Florigon died but I will try again if  advised to. It took 3 Keitt trees to get one well established...  I am on the Western edge of Cape Coral on the water less than a mile as the crow flies from Matlacha.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Oro Negro fruit at Wal-Mart
« on: December 31, 2016, 10:18:50 AM »
I bought 2 avocados at one of the Cape Coral Florida stores on Dec23. They were labeled as Brooks slimcados with 4223 stickers but fruit was green and had right shape and size for Oro Negro. Sure enough they ripened black after a few days. I ate one this morning and it had the same buttery great taste. A very pleasant surprise. Worth a look at Florida Wal-Marts for a little while....

Looking for 3 gal size grafted mango trees, anywhere south of Tampa in SW Florida. Might consider 7 gal trees. Varieties I am looking for are Frances Hargrave, Dwarf Hawaiian, and Rosa.  I know a few nurseries in SE Florida list them, I might drive out if I knew for sure that they are available. I just hesitate to ask for a specific variety when I call a nursery unless I have a level of personal trust that the trees are true to type and not tag switched just to make a sale. I also hesitate to drive 120 miles or more each way to find out what I want is unavailable. I am in Cape Coral.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Avocado Breeding with limited space
« on: September 05, 2016, 11:28:48 AM »
 I was looking through articles online about avocado breeding and came across a few facts that gave me hope. Some fruits,like apples,might need over 10000 to possibly 50000 seeds to be planted to get a superior new variety,and the vast majority would be barely edible.
   Avocados and mangoes would seem to give a decent chance to at least get edible fruit from a seedling. Hass was selected from one of 300 seedlings when I looked up the history of avocado breeding. In one trial, seedling progeny of Hass gave something like 14 out of 400 seedlings with promise,and one line of these gave almost 25 percent promising seedlings,according to a plant geneticist named B.O. Bergh.
 I guess planting out Hass seedlings even in Florida might have a chance,if you planted enough.  If you planted out several hundred,maybe one or two would survive the climate and thrive?
  Last year during avocado season I bought about 150 local South-West Florida avocados to eat, mostly from the Painters on Pine Island from about Aug. to Feb. I saved every seed,bagging the saved seeds once a week in moist peat moss in a warm place until they began to germinate. I randomly set them out in a bed near my house about 6 by 10 feet to see what happened. The bed is in a very wet spot that gets lots of run off from my roof. A lot of them sprouted and then died of root rot.I also watered a lot from my highly saline well that causes salt injury to most avocados and mangoes.Some had bad leaf tip burn and died. Others grew fine but had small leaves. I finally picked the one best seedling and carefully dug and transplanted it out. It has leaves up to 10 1/2 inches long and about 3 inches wide, much larger than any of the others. It looks like it will be a strong tree with excellent foliage,new growth is very red,it has 2 side branches already at less than 3 feet tall. It may never produce fruit better than any of its possible parents, but at worst I will top work it in a few years if the fruit disappoints. It was from a fairly small seeded variety with a pointed seed. I remember buying Day,Catalina,Loretta(Haven't heard anything else about it in Florida but it was very good fruit), Tonnage, Ettinger (also a very good fruit that I haven't heard any other reports about in Florida) , Lula, and several others last year, All were pretty good, but I think these were the only possible parents with pointed seeds if I remember correctly.I didn't pick the fruit so I don't know what the leaves on the possible parent trees looked like. It was fun experimenting and now with only a little effort and space, I have a promising one out of 150 seedling that hasn't fruited yet but gives me hope.... If everyone with a little space tried this with avocados and mangos, in a decade we would have mangos and avocados covering the whole year in SW Florida.

I have seen an avocado variety called "Expedition" for sale at ECHO but can't find any information anywhere on the net and wondering if anyone knows about it. Is it one of Richard Campbell's collections,and if so is there a story to go with it?

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