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Messages - Darkman

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Cold Hardy Citrus / Re: citrus grown from seed shows more cold hardiness
« on: January 11, 2019, 12:51:18 AM »
Whether it does or not must be prefaced by the seasons highs and lows. I had a 15 year old seedling grapefruit tree. never had any cold issues till 2014. this tree was huge with a 14' base and nearly twenty foot tall. lows of 18 started its demise with defoliation and tip damage. borers killed it the following year.

My point is that it wasn't the 18 degrees, it was the lack of cold temperatures leading up to the 18. Lack of suitable temps to harden off the tree was the biggest problem. I will say that the tree would not of died if the borers had not attacked. They probably would not have attacked if not for the tip damage. In 2014 I  lost nine other trees to the freeze. No borers were involved in their death.

Don't you bank your trees with dirt for freeze protection?

I had soil banked in previous years but felt that the trees were big enough that I didn't need to and I was not counting on lows of 18, an ice storm and sub freezing temperatures for nearly 46 hours. That was an unusual extreme combination that probably will never happen again. this year I was expecting a low of 23 but it dipped to 19. If I had used my spray I would not have lost any trees. As it is this year I think I'm only going to have one tree completely killed. I'll probably use this opportunity to cull a few trees and add some newer varieties. I'm looking at Tango, EV1 and Sugar Belle.

Tom was right I had a heart attack in May 2014 followed by a quadruple bypass. I finally retired from law enforcement July 14th, 2017 but I still maintain a reserve status and work about twenty hours a week. Maybe later this year I'll give it all up.

Hi Millet I hope to attend this years expo. Do we know where it will be? I hope ill be able to participate some now.

A bit of Bad News. HLB has arrived near me. There are five confirmed cases within 80 miles and one within 20 miles.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Citrus Growers Forum
« on: March 02, 2018, 12:11:05 AM »
An incredible feat!

I had nearly 1000 posts on there and now I can revisit and store that data on a Word doc.


So far in my Pensacola plantings with trees planted in 2012 I rank them Kimbrough then Owari. I have Ponkon, Xie Shan and Shiranui that I have not harvested good fruit off of yet.

Best overall citrus was Hamlin followed closely by Orlando. I lost Hamlin and Orlando in 2014, replanted and lost them again in 2017. May replace with Tango and/or Sugarbelle. Had Cara Cara and liked it but it too was lost in 2014. I have a small replacement growing now.

I have a Parson Brown orange that is ok for juicing.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Dekopon Seed Germination
« on: March 01, 2018, 06:06:10 PM »
The big orange box store had them as Shiraniu and they were sourced from Record Buck Trees.

On February 27th, 2018 I attended the Panhandle Satsuma Workshop. Pete Anderson professor UF was there and stated Sugar Belle is HLB resistant. It was the only Satsuma mentioned as HLB resistant. The use of Imidacloprid drenches will PREVENT young trees from being infected.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Dekopon Seeds- True to Parent?
« on: March 01, 2018, 05:03:09 PM »
Will the seedling fruit in less than five years?

Citrus General Discussion / Re: How To Find Love In China
« on: March 01, 2018, 05:01:25 PM »
And I just got rid of my last Mandarin. Oh well probably couldn't find a Sharpee anyway. There never around when you need them.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Xie Shan Satsuma Trees
« on: March 01, 2018, 04:49:22 PM »
Wow! I'm glad I did bring this topic back to life. Tom, Millet, Mr. Texas and references to Monte Nesbitt. I'm glad all y'all are still posting. Millet I know Hershell gave you my number use it! LOL Tom glad you're still doing the hoop house. Last time we saw each other was in Clanton at the expo. Mr. Texas I sure was glad you chipped in with your experience. The piece from Monte was great. I think I'll follow his advice this year.

I sampled weekly last year but they never developed the acidity or sweetness. Might have something to do with the 91.3 inches of rain. I was sampling when they were still green. I might look into the GA3.

My trees have tight white buds right now and the tree is loaded with blooms. I realize I may still have some wait but y'all did give me some bope. Much appreciated!

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Xie Shan Satsuma Trees
« on: February 28, 2018, 01:06:12 PM »
Too much N has been suggested but I don't believe I did that. To explain, my citrus rows have a Geneva Double Curtain muscadine trellis running the length of the rows between the citrus rows. I fertilize each according to recommendations. I'm careful to fertilize within the dripline and careful about not overlapping. Having said that as far as I know muscadine nor citrus roots probably don't care about driplines. Maybe I do need to cut back. Overwatering has also been suggested. Mother Nature doesn't read the suggested watering guides for my orchard plants. She gave me 91.3 inches last year clearly more than I needed. I'll start with the soil sample and see what I have in the ground and go from there.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Xie Shan Satsuma Trees
« on: February 28, 2018, 04:03:17 AM »
Hi all,

I wanted to drag this topic up to offer and ask for Xie Shan growers comments on how it has done for them.  I have been growing Xie Shan since 2012. It has proven to be extremely cold hardy enduring lows of 18 several times,with minimal damage and no cold protection. All four trees have developed into a large mounding tree about 10 feet tall and slightly wider. It sets large loads of fruit however the fruit is puffy, insipid and unsaleable. Yesterday February 27th, 2018 I attended the Florida Panhandle Satsuma Workshop given by IFAS and the University of Florida. Not many growers are growing Xie Shan and those that are says it takes 8 - 10 years to mature and produce quality fruit. Many have bull dozed their plantings and replaced them with other varieties.

So I'm asking yall what has been your experiences? As a point of reference my four were bought from Harris and I couldn't be happier with them.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Citrus...Mulch or NO Mulch?
« on: April 25, 2014, 08:38:38 AM »
I, with my three years of experience, have never mulched within three feet of the trunk. I have often considered doing this as it makes my maintenance harder having to remove weeds that grow in the mulch free zone. After this year the canopy on my larger trees probably would have shaded any weeds out but this winter I lost about half of those trees from Winter kill so I'm starting over.

One reason for not having the mulch was that the sun will heat the ground so that it is released at night and helps to protect the tree against cold temperatures. I belived the commercial citrus industry sprays herbicides to keep that area weed free. The primary reason I believe is to create an inhospitable area for fungus and rot to occur.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Borer in my Grapefruit tree
« on: April 22, 2014, 08:49:56 AM »
Georgia Extension could help with ID and they will use a microscope. Tom

Tom do you have a contact number for the right party?

If I cannot get it identified locally I may go that route.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Borer in my Grapefruit tree
« on: April 21, 2014, 04:57:46 PM »
Well I finally caught three of the little bast err borers and after a lengthy web search I am 100% sure that I have no clue and I'd probably need a microscope and a college degree to figure it out. Seems the two borers are indistinguishable to me. I have requested from a local expert in these matters but have not heard back from them.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Valentine Pumelo
« on: April 21, 2014, 04:46:16 PM »
A little searching is showing me that I may not find Valentine in Florida.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Nippon Orangequat
« on: April 20, 2014, 03:38:12 PM »
This is a quote from a Florida respected plant vendor, " Plus if you want a more upright tree, the Xie Shan doesn't weep like most Japanese satsuma varieties".

My trees (4) is the most prostrate citrus I have and is nowhere near upright. How does your Xie shan grow.

19F with a ice storm and at or below freezing for 40 hours!

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Centennial Kumquat fruit
« on: April 20, 2014, 02:37:22 PM »
Good to know. I found it tasty and will go in-ground this year!

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Harris Citrus FL
« on: April 20, 2014, 02:35:44 PM »
Let me clarify, what I have seen that were in the 4 inch deep root starter pots looked ok (some a little whippy), it was the ones in 7 gallon sizes and up that looked as if they were and had been neglected for an extended time period from uppotting and from receiving any type of nutrients.

That makes sense. I think starting with the smaller plants is better than the potted, repotted and possibly root bound plants you find at many retail stores and nurseries. The smaller ones probably will develop a superior root system and will quickly obtain the size of the initially larger plants from big pots.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Chas's Citrus Collection
« on: April 20, 2014, 02:30:05 PM »

You are a brave soul!

Pictures are nice. Congratulations.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Easter Sunday
« on: April 20, 2014, 02:27:51 PM »
Yes Happy Easter to all. I'm working right now but will be off soon and then my family and I will sit down to dinner and rejoice in the true meaning of Easter.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Winter lessons learned!!!
« on: April 20, 2014, 02:24:18 PM »
Those with sprouts at the bottom of the trunk could be a hardier rootstock waking up.

I have checked them and while the rootstock has shot out several sprouts I always rub them out before they get going. The sprouts I wrote about are all above the graft.

Baring something unforeseen I will definitely be at the 2014 Citrus Expo and will be looking forward to seeing everyone.

Citrus General Discussion / Re: All of my worst fears are coming true
« on: April 19, 2014, 07:44:42 PM »
There is no cure!!!

Citrus General Discussion / Re: Borer in my Grapefruit tree
« on: April 19, 2014, 07:43:03 PM »
Hi Joeb,

Why are you certain it is Ambrosia. There are many boring beetles. The ambrosias tell is the long line of frass they leave as they bore INTO the trunk. I do not have that. I have a small pile of frass such as one would leave when boring OUT of a tree. The Pin head beetle does this. I hope I am right. I have not found any beetles yet. I am considering the solution you described to be on the safe side. however I have hundreds of holes to deal with and I would need a twelve foot ladder to reach many of them.

My current plans include twenty ounces of Imidacloprid, Spinosad, permethrin and Summer oil. I will not see any fruit from this tree for two years and it will not bloom this year so I believe all will be safe.

My vote goes to the Cara Cara and the Xie Shan. I grow both although I may have lost Cara Cara this Winter. Cara Cara is great juiced or fresh eating. The Xie Shan has a excellent flavor. My Xie Shan were not phased by this past brutal Winter are heavily laden with fruit this year.

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