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Topics - Fiddler

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Tropical Fruit Discussion / How Long Do Macadamia Nuts Remain Edible?
« on: November 19, 2023, 05:54:49 AM »
Once macadamia nuts are harvested and de-husked, but remaining in their shells, how long are they safe to eat if not frozen, refrigerated, or otherwise processed? I still have some of last year's harvest simply stored in a cabinet. Once cracked, there is no disagreeable odor or color indicating spoilage. I'd hate to throw them out, but I'd also hate to get sick. What would you do?

I have several 15 year-old fruit trees on my property that have been neglected over the years for several reasons. Now that my health and finances have been somewhat restored, I'd like to try to rehabilitate some of these old trees I've been shamefully been neglecting lately. These are macadamias, starfruit, loquat, and jujube. These trees are still alive, but showing a lot of dead wood and are not producing fruit anymore. Would aggressive pruning, watering, and fertilizing help? At the age of 72, I'd rather not start over with baby trees.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Transplanting Mature Lychee Tree?
« on: May 08, 2022, 12:33:02 AM »
My neighbor has decided he no longer wants his rather large Emperor Lychee in his yard. He says he's going to destroy it. I was horrified, and tried to talk him out of it. This tree is very healthy and attractive and has produced fruit in past years, but apparently not this year.
     I told him I'd take the tree and try to save it, and he agreed. It'll be a two-man job to lug it over into my yard. I'm pretty sure we'll have to cut through some roots when we dig it up.
     Any suggestions on how to successfully transplant this tree? Should it be aggressively pruned, or transferred as-is? One of my other neighbors moved a mature mango tree across his yard a few years ago, and it survived, so I figured to give this a try.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Root Feeding: Yea Or Nay?
« on: January 17, 2022, 06:00:45 AM »
A retired arborist friend of mine stopped by, and when I complained about some of my oldest fruit trees looking poorly, he recommended "root feeding" with sort of a giant hypodermic needle that forces fertilizer and water deep underground. He said he used this technique up north and it quickly rejuvenates fading old trees. We rode around town to various stores and nurseries, looking for a root feeder, but to no avail. Before I go to the trouble of ordering one online, I thought I'd seek opinions here.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Spanish Moss As Mulch?
« on: December 23, 2021, 06:04:52 AM »
As those of you in Southwest Florida already know, we had a freakish windstorm the other day. A huge amount of spanish moss was blown out of my oak trees and now must be disposed of. Is there any reason this stuff couldn't be placed under my fruit trees to prevent weeds? I've never used it as mulch before and figured I'd better check to see if any harm could come of it.
    On another note: The jujubes I've been watching and sampling every day for ripeness are now all on the ground. Damn! I just needed a few more days!

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Can I Get Larger Jujubes?
« on: November 20, 2021, 10:43:06 AM »
I've got two large "Thai Giant" Indian jujube trees that produce a lot of fruit every winter. I just wish they weren't so small! Most of them are somewhere between a large olive and a grape tomato in size. A small handful reach the size of a small apple.
    Why are most so small and why do some get much larger? These trees are at least ten years old and seem healthy.
     Is there anything I can do to produce bigger jujubes?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Aggressively Pruning Macadamias?
« on: August 23, 2021, 07:42:13 PM »
My macadamia trees are about 15 years old and have produced well over the years. However, these days they look weird with a lot of dead branches mixed in with the live stuff. I did some pruning of all branches a couple of years ago, but there hasn't been any new growth since. Is that normal? All my other trees (mangoes, lychees, loquats, etc.) respond to pruning with lots of new growth. But not the macadamias.
   What can be done?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Are These Anything Worthwhile?
« on: May 20, 2021, 09:54:55 AM »
Across the street from me is an overgrown lot. I never took any interest in it until I saw a county worker go in and put up fruit fly traps. This guy informed me that back in the thicket there were several old fruit trees. I never bothered investigating because the thicket is pretty much impenetrable.
    This morning I saw these fruit hanging from a rather large tree. Are they Surinam Cherries or something?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Should I Buy Fruit Trees Online?
« on: May 15, 2021, 04:25:08 PM »
Do you have a favorite online retail vendor who ships quality trees with good customer service? None of my local nurseries have any macadamia trees and I'd rather not drive all the way to Pine Island this time. Apparently, the covid shutdowns have cancelled the twice-yearly fruit tree sales at the community center in Nokomis. Back in the "good old days" I used to call Steve at Fruitscapes and order some trees to be brought to the event, which is much closer to my home.
   I guess I'm gonna have to take a chance on mail-order trees. Any recommendations?

My lychees are beginning to show some pink. I'm rather surprised because it seems too early, but hey, everything in nature seems to be starting early this year! The Chuck-Will's-Widows in the nearby woods started calling in February, as did the Bobwhite Quail. These birds usually don't start until May. Global Warming?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Most Disease-Resistant Macadamia?
« on: February 16, 2021, 11:37:54 AM »
I had a Beaumont macadamia that was flourishing in the ground for three years, then suddenly developed some kind of fungal disease and died within a week. My other two macadamia trees (an Arkan Papershell and a Dana White) seem unaffected. Should I chance another Beaumont, or go with another variety?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Nokomis Fruit Tree Sale This Year?
« on: October 13, 2020, 07:42:51 PM »
Does anyone know if the annual October fruit tree sale is going to take place at the Nokomis Community Center this year?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Sick Macadamia?
« on: October 12, 2020, 07:11:10 PM »
I've become alarmed at the clusters of brown leaves suddenly showing up on my Beaumont Macadamia. For years, this tree has been healthy, productive, and growing like a weed. Now this. Any ideas what could be wrong?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / When To Harvest Persimmons?
« on: September 29, 2020, 10:47:47 AM »
My persimmons are showing nice color, but are still as hard as baseballs. Usually the birds end up hollowing them out, but this year the tree is netted, so the birds are stymied.
    Should I wait until the fruit gets soft?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Do Persimmons Ever Get Soft?
« on: October 02, 2019, 02:37:54 PM »
After years of rather lackluster fruiting, my persimmon is really loaded. In years gone by, the birds ruined all the fruit before I could try any. I've never eaten a persimmon, so I don't know what to expect.
   Months ago I put a bird net up and have been watching and squeezing these fruit. They are showing good color, but remain hard as rocks. This has been going on for months.
   I tried one and wasn't too impressed. Will these fruit eventually soften and sweeten up if I leave them on the tree longer?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Preserving Lychees?
« on: June 01, 2019, 10:43:27 AM »
I should have asked this question days ago. Now I'm sitting here looking at a big bucket of lychees I harvested this morning.
  What is the best way to preserve lychees? I'd like to be able to offer some to my snowbird friends and neighbors when they return to the 'hood in November.
    Any special trick to freezing them? Skins on or off? Seeds?
    I also have a food dehydrator. Can lychees be dried?
    All advice will be appreciated.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Is My Lychee Tree Sick?
« on: May 23, 2019, 05:04:28 PM »
My lychee's leaves have suddenly turned yellow and brown. I've never seen it do this before.
   Is this something I should worry about? I'm trying to figure out how to post a photo here.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / How To Improve Jujube Fruit Size?
« on: January 08, 2019, 04:53:04 AM »
My "Thai Giant" Indian jujube trees are producing very small fruit this year. They are not much bigger than large olives. While my jujubes typically aren't huge, this year's crop is very disappointing. The trees seem healthy and are aggressively pruned back every summer.
    Is there anything that can be done to encourage these trees to produce larger fruit?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Your Favorite Telescoping Pole Pruner?
« on: November 02, 2018, 07:13:05 PM »
Up till now I've been occasionally borrowing my neighbor's manual pole saw/pruner, and now I've decided to buy my own. I almost never used the curved saw blade on his, the lopper did everything I wanted.
     Now I'm researching the various pole pruners on the market. I've decided I don't want the external pull rope because it always flapped around getting tangled in branches and I'd rather keep both hands on the pole. The internal rope seems to be the way to go.
     The Sniper seems interesting. Anyone have one?
     What is your favorite pole pruner?
     I'll carefully consider all suggestions and advice.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Weird Atemoya Problem
« on: August 09, 2018, 06:09:19 AM »
My atemoya fruit have reached a certain size and then simply stopped growing or ripening. They are well-shaped and healthy-looking and I was very excited when they first appeared... five months ago!  :(
   This tree was quite large when I bought it from Fruitscapes a couple of years ago. Paid $250 for it. It seems healthy. The first year it was in the ground I picked all the fruitlets off of it so it would develop good roots.
    When this second crop appeared, I picked off everything except a handful of fruit, not wanting to overtax the tree.
     This tree gets full sun all day and plenty of rain. The fruit have more or less reached the size of a tennis ball and have remained rock-hard for months now. None of them are misshapen in any way.
    Is it normal for atemoyas to take such a long time to reach full size and ripen?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / How To Reach High Mulberries?
« on: July 19, 2018, 10:47:27 AM »
Has anyone invented a pole picker for small fruit like mulberries? My pole picker works fine for larger fruit, but is useless for mulberries. I might try lining my current picker with something to try to keep the berries from falling out.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / When To Prune Mulberry Tree?
« on: July 04, 2018, 12:27:30 AM »
I'm planning to take a chainsaw to several bottom branches of my large mulberry tree so I can mow under it more easily. I usually prune this tree while it is dormant in winter to avoid all that milky, sticky white sap that gets all over everything if a limb is cut in summertime.
     However, I don't know if I'm patient enough to wait till winter. We've still got a long summer ahead of us here in Southwest Florida with many more lawn mowings yet to go.
     Will it hurt the tree to severely prune it now?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Help! My Nuts Are Driving Me Nuts!
« on: November 22, 2017, 03:49:44 PM »
I can't seem to crack my macadamias without also busting the kernel into bits as well. I spent more than a hundred bucks on a macadamia cracker, and it certainly does a good job breaking the shells with very little effort on my part.
    Problem is, only about one in ten comes out as an entire, unbroken kernel. I've let them sit in the Florida sun on a drying rack for a couple of weeks after they fell off the tree. Should I leave them out there longer?
    Any advice would be appreciated.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Hurricane Wind's Effect On Sri Lankan Weevils?
« on: September 13, 2017, 04:17:15 PM »
Over the years I've noticed that Sri Lankan Weevils are easily shaken out of my lychee trees. Hurricane Irma passed right through here and my lychee trees survived just fine. I sorta wonder if the weevils did. Those trees, and everything else was really whipping around!  Do you think the weevils were blown away?

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Best Macadamia Nut Cracker?
« on: July 30, 2017, 02:13:24 AM »
My macadamia trees are beginning to produce so many nuts that breaking them in the bench vice on my workbench is becoming tedious.
   Anyone have any suggestions on where I can find the perfect macadamia cracker?

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