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Messages - HIfarm

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Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / Re: Luc's Garcinia Pumpkin type
« on: July 26, 2020, 01:02:02 PM »

Very nice, I hope mine arrive that nicely or at all. My tracking number never even worked.

My tracking number didn't work either (USPS said it was delivered last year) but I eventually got mine, in good condition.

Congrats! A couple questions, how old is your tree and do you only have one? Reason I ask is because I have one on my property but was wondering if I should put a couple more. Thanks!


It would probably be prudent to try the fruit before you plant more.  The smell of the fruit can be pretty assertive so it is not for everyone.  I've got a couple; it was probably about 5 years to bear in the Hilo area.

Exciting day today! The long awaited moment came. Finally got to get a real taste of Luc's Mexican garcinia. Also picked a bunch of Whitman fibreless soursops, (Different post on that one later.) The garcinia was surprising, very different than any other garcinia i've tasted, especially the texture, which is very soft and melting. The taste is very pleasant, Different depending at what stage you eat it. If you eat it totally soft, and starting to wrinkle, the taste is totally sweet, kind of like apple sauce. If you eat it ripe, but still hard it tastes like apple sauce with some lemon juice mixed in. It has an unusual fragrance and taste a bit hard for me to describe, but pleasant. The fruits look from afar like a yellow lilikoi, yellow Passiflora edulis. They even wrinkle when ripe like lilikois. It doesn't taste anything like the achachairu, which is kind of what i was expecting, because everyone compares it to achachairu. But the fruit is really more like Garcinia xanthochymus in texture, soft and melting, but not at all tart, and so more pleasant to eat out of hand. The rind is very thin and edible, but i found it too tough to eat and a little bit bitter. It's much more pleasant to eat this fruit without the rind in my opinion. The seeds are large, but not at all bothersome because there is still plenty to eat and they separate very easily from the pulp, unlike the achachairu.

Congrats on finally getting these to fruit for you, Oscar.  Does this change your opinion on fruiting them in our climate?  (Do you think you just got lucky with the weather during flowering or perhaps does the tree have to attain a certain mass to hold fruit?)


Sounds good PC, thanks for posting.  I'll have to give it a try.  Just curious, did you deep fry them like french fries or pan fry like hash browns?


Tropical Fruit Buy, Sell & Trade / Re: Looking for Davidson plums
« on: June 22, 2020, 10:07:18 PM »
I think I just noticed that Oscar at Fruitlover's has them in stock.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: What do you use to label plants?
« on: June 15, 2020, 10:59:07 PM »

How many labels have you made? I am concerned about durability of the embosser if I were to shell out that much for a tool, would be pissed if it broke


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: What do you use to label plants?
« on: June 15, 2020, 08:11:41 PM »
I posted about this before.  It depends how many you are doing to see if it would be worth the expense but using a Dymo Rhino with metal tape works great.  The attached thread describes how I attach them to PVC pipe (as stakes).  It has been holding up for years with no issues & is as legible as the day I made them.  An added plus is that the PVC pipe gets easily destroyed by a bush hog or lawn tractor without any damage to the mowing machine if some idiot rides over them while mowing (which wouldn't be the case if you used something like rebar for the stake).  If you opt to use this method, spend a little more & use SS screws (reg screws sure don't last well in HI). 


I have not yet had a chance to try it so I cannot comment personally, but some compare one of the New World Garcinias (used to be Rheedia) to mangosteen.  This species is still not officially described but has been talked about a lot here and is generally referred to as lemoncillo or Luc's garcinia.  It is from Mexico.  One of Luc's countrymen, Raul, has recently had an ad for it:

If you do a search, you'll find more info on it.  It requires much less heat than mangosteen to grow well.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Is breadfruit worth growing?
« on: June 03, 2020, 01:29:03 AM »

Oh wow, I'm curious why starfruit makes the list for self-sufficiency. Is it that nutritious? I heard it's actually a bit dangerous to eat too much of it, especially for those with kidney issues, because of the neurotoxin found in the fruit.

I believe the culprit is oxalates (oxalic acid), not a neurotoxin, in starfruit (same goes for bilimbi).

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Is breadfruit worth growing?
« on: June 02, 2020, 09:03:24 PM »
As at least a couple of people have mentioned, the ulu (breadfruit) leaves are very attractive and I decided I was going to plant at least one whether or not I was wild about the fruit.  I have a Samoan and a Ma'afala.  The Samoan seems to want to resist my attempts to control its size (height) and I think my constant whacking back has prevented it from bearing yet.  The Ma'afala is one that is being tissue cultured so should probably be readily available in your area.  The fruit is supposed to be very good and the plant is more compact and easier to manage.  I am not aware of having sampled the Ma'afala fruit so I cannot comment if it is any better than your average ulu but should be a good one to look for.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Is breadfruit worth growing?
« on: June 02, 2020, 02:51:30 PM »
Here in HI, it frequently shows up at pot luck functions in a wide variety of dishes.  It can generally range from ok to pretty good (I don't think I've had any that I would call awful).  I did have some prepared with coconut milk as BM mentioned & it was quite good.  You should check for recipes on line, it is pretty versatile as Peter mentioned, and is used in all sorts of ways.  My trees are not bearing yet so I have not experimented much with it yet.  I have heard when it gets quite ripe, it gets sweeter so also works well in desserts then. 


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Lakoocha
« on: May 22, 2020, 11:25:58 PM »
I sell seeds of lakoocha. No fruits right now. Male flowers only. So probably in about 6-8 weeks should have seeds available.
I was going to post to ask you about this, Oscar.  So only 1 1/2 - 2 mos for the fruit to mature?  I've got a couple of lakoocha that have been flowering heavily for probably a couple of weeks now (looks like male & female flowers) so I was curious how long for the fruit to mature.  Have you fruited the varieties that Mike T sent seeds of a few years back?  How was the quality?


It starts out with a general treatment of African Annonaceae that is quite in-depth and would probably be tedious for most casual fruit growers.  I found the highlight to be chapter 6 which is the monograph for Monodora & Isolona.

Looks like a really interesting paper, it's going to take some time to digest...

I recall that a lot of seed outlets (even vegetable seed vendors) had this maybe 10 yrs ago but it seemed to died out in popularity so I am guessing that the flavor is not stellar.  Weird looking though.

SW, I have heard some people talking favorably about Akebia in the past, what are your impressions of it?


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Tap Roots
« on: April 29, 2020, 09:51:43 PM »
I'm not sure of the reason for your question so I am not sure if this is real helpful.  I suspect any seed grown tree is going to have a tap root, although some may be more impressive than others.  Trees propagated by cutting or air layer will not have a tap root and some claim that these trees are less well anchored (although some also claim it is not a big deal).

I assume you are referring to seedlings (relatively small trees) here.  I would not intentionally cut the tap root unless you are willing to risk the tree.  I had one of the South American walnuts in a grow bag and didn't realize its tap root had grown out of the bag until I tried to move it.  The tap root snapped off and the tree died within days.  I am not sure if this would be an exceptional case but be aware that it might have a bad outcome if you cut off the taproot.  I think it would really depend on the type of tree.  I had a friend bring a couple of ingas over for me that were ~5-6' tall, had no root ball and were missing most of the roots, including most of the tap root.  I assumed I was wasting my time planting them but both survived & grew well once they got established.

If it is a tree that is in the ground & established, I would guess it would not be fatal to cut the tap root if there were a lot of other roots, especially if you removed some of the leafy growth to compensate.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: mystery inga?
« on: April 25, 2020, 12:54:09 PM »
Thanks, SW.  I had quickly looked up I. edulis after your first post and the first few sites I looked at did not resemble what I have (they showed pods that were oblong in cross section, more like what I had seen in the past).  But, after your second post, I looked further and found some pics that do look like mine (and these seem to be from more reliable sites).  So, edulis looks like it might be a good match.  I also have some other trees that I got as I. edulis that are now just flowering so I will have to look & see if they look the same in fruiting.  Their growth pattern (more upright) seems similar to this one I posted about.  I did not notice the raised pattern on the bark so I will also have to doublecheck that on these younger trees.  Thanks for your help. 

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: mystery inga?
« on: April 25, 2020, 01:47:46 AM »
Thanks for that comment, Jim.  I never really noticed that they were nectar glands but there is a fleshy flattened area (evidently the gland) between the leaflets.  It seems a bit more "leafy" looking than on most ingas I have noticed.  These pods are pretty much long cylinders that are corkscrewed.  I haven't really seen ingas where the pods appear to be round in cross section before.  So I am still not convinced that this is an inga but I suspect it must at least be a cousin.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / mystery inga?
« on: April 24, 2020, 05:11:51 PM »
I got a couple of trees from a friend here on the big island.  I was told they were machete inga so I suspected that they would be I. spectabilis or something similar.  This is what the tree turned out to be (below).  It is quite different from any Inga I have seen.  The leaves do look inga-like.  The pods are quite long, 2 1/2-3' but not machete type (if you want to keep the edged weapon analogy, you could say rapier-like).  The tree is more upright than most species of Inga I am growing.  The trunk also has very strange looking raised ridges that I have not seen on Inga before.  Any guesses what I have here?  I have not tried breaking open a pod to try these as I am not even convinced that this is an edible species at this point.  Thanks for any help you can give.

Good luck with the plants.  Plants from the cerrado have a reputation for being notoriously difficult for most growers outside of that area.  If you do a search on this site, you will see references to the "cerrado curse" since growing these plants generally does not turn out well for most who attempt it.  Again, good luck with them and let us know how they do for you long term.


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: paradise nuts
« on: April 13, 2020, 03:47:08 PM »
It looks like L. zabucayo but I am not that familiar with other species in the genus so would not stake my life on it.  Reportedly, scarification is helpful to improve germination / rate of germination but I think that danger of damaging the seed in the process probably offsets any advantages it would bring.  I think with the ambient temp you'd have in Belize, just plant them & you should get good germination.  Plant them anywhere from 1/2 covered to thinly covered by soil (if you look under a paradise nut tree, you'll see many "volunteers" sprouting with this sort of soil coverage).  As Faldon mentioned, they seem to be slow growing (but perhaps they kick into gear once they reach a certain size?).

I have not seen the monkey pots used for candles before but they are great to mount orchids on.  One guy here uses them frequently and everything he grows on them looks outstanding (although where he lives also contributes to a great degree).  A couple years back, we awarded a CCE/AOS (highest cultural award from the American Orchid Society) for a Paraphalenopsis he was growing on one.  So, there is another great use for the pods the nuts grow in.


I got good germination on these.  It has been about 5 1/2 years since I made this post so my memory is a little sketchy on details.  I believe that I used scarification (a razor knife to try to cut a slice through the husk of the nut) to aide germination on the first batch.  However, invariably some cuts would go into the seed slightly so I am thinking that this method did as much harm as good.  The second batch I did, I just planted the nut as is and I believe that the overall germination of these was close to the same as those in the first batch but perhaps slower.  If memory serves me right, I think that I planted them either half covered by soil or thinly covered with soil.  The seedlings have grown slowly for me and I have no trees near bearing size yet (so this is a hint if you are looking for seeds, I don't have any yet and probably won't for a quite a while).


Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Mangos in Hamakua, Hawaii
« on: April 09, 2020, 04:59:03 PM »
I have an orchard in Hamakua. Have been testing over 50 varieties for around 20 years. My orchard is right at sea level, so in a much better location for producing mangoes than yours. Sorry to tell you but you are probably in one of the worst locations in Hawaii for getting consistent fruiting of manoges. Your location is way too rainy. Honestly your best bet would be to try to plant some trees along the coast somewhere if at all possible.
If that is not possible then HiFarm gave you a good suggestion: Mangifera odorata (Kuini). However he is wrong in saying that species is the one that tastes most like mango. Actually Mangifera kasturi tastea a lot more like mango. I like kasturi a lot more than the kuini. The kuini has a very strong odor and turpentine taste. The lonly drawback with the kasturi is that it is small and a bit stringy. You should also try lalee jewo.
If you still want to try mangoes at your location i would suggest planting them under plastic cover. Maybe put them in very large pots, and in the winter when they flower move them under clear plastic. You will still get some anthracnose due to very high air humidity.
The cultivars i have found to be most anthracnose resistant are: Fairchild, Florigon, Brook's Late, Neelam, Nam Doc Mai, Rapoza. If you combine placing them under plastic cover with spraying copper sulphate then you could get a decent fruit set. If you are like most you will probably revert to buying Kona mangoes.
If you want to get scion wood i do sell it, check out my list at

Glad you weighed in on this Oscar, I was hoping you would.  I haven't tried kasturi yet (tree is still too young) so I was hesitant to say it tasted like mango without first hand knowledge.  I haven't had lalijiwa for probably a couple of years but my recollection it was very good but a bit different flavor from an indica mango.  The kuini I had definitely had a strong odor (but, like some other fruits, seemed better if you peeled it and enjoyed the flesh somewhere away from the peel).  There was definitely some turpentine component but didn't seem too bad (I've had noname mango here that was as bad or worse for turp).

Glad to hear that the clones I selected are among your best performers, Oscar, maybe I'll get a mango or two on rare occasions.  Year before last, I thought I had it made with my Keitt.  The first flush of flowering resulted in dozens of set fruits, even with the frequent rain.  A second flush came, again with frequent rain, with about zero fruit set.  Then the first fruits gradually began getting fungused, despite spraying and drier weather.  A lot of them got bigger than a walnut, maybe duck egg size and then poof, they all dropped shortly thereafter.

Tropical Fruit Discussion / Re: Mangos in Hamakua, Hawaii
« on: April 08, 2020, 03:25:46 PM »
I'd say if you want reliable mango production along Hamakua, you probably want to look at kuini (M. odorata) rather than indica clones.  The flavor is pretty good (but I am sure not up to the standards of a good indica), although the fruits are somewhat more 'fragrant' than regular mangoes.  Others like lalijiwa and kasturi are also probably good choices but are probably less "mango-like".

 I have put in some indica clones despite the weather being challenging for them here, figuring I may get occasional crops.  I've got Rapoza, Keitt, Fairchild, Nam Doc Mai, and Florigon as all these got at least some positive reviews for anthracnose resistance.  The trees are still relatively young.  Year before last, Keitt set a good amount of fruit but it all gradually blasted from anthracnose, some of it getting fairly large before dropping.  Last year, all flowered well but few set anything noticeable.  The only one that held fruit to maturity was a single fruit from Rapoza.  It was quite good.  I did try spraying a few times with a silica spray that was supposed to inhibit fungus but I think that the rains were just too frequent and washed away the spray before it could do much good.  I've got a couple of other grafts coming along & we'll see if they fare any better.  I am hoping that Cac will also bloom this year - not counting on that being any more reliable.  The others are blooming well now, hopefully rain will hold off a bit.

When I was buying some of my trees from a supplier along Hamakua, I asked what clone would bear reliably in the area.  He commented Brooks Late.  I didn't remember that one as a potential winner in my research so I asked him about quality.  He reply was something like "Uhh .... it's not one of my favorites".  So Brooks Late could also be a good candidate.


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