Author Topic: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry  (Read 2514 times)

Fygee

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #25 on: May 20, 2021, 03:23:49 PM »
If anyone does do any air layering or roots cuttings, I'd like to try growing the high quality varieties here.

I have a friend with a big tree, but the quality of the fruit is lacking. Not sure what variety it is.
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K-Rimes

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #26 on: May 20, 2021, 04:10:28 PM »
If anyone does do any air layering or roots cuttings, I'd like to try growing the high quality varieties here.

I have a friend with a big tree, but the quality of the fruit is lacking. Not sure what variety it is.

I'm experimenting with rooting jaboticaba and pitomba cuttings which should be more challenging than pitanga.

Also, of note, the native name in Tupi (the brazilian native language) is pitanga* and I much prefer referring to it that way. Does anyone know how it became known as Surinam? Seems disingenuous.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2021, 09:11:08 PM by K-Rimes »

simon_grow

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #27 on: May 20, 2021, 04:46:49 PM »
This year I really changed up my fertilization regimen on my surinams which didn't produce much (other than my grafted vermillion which was INCREDIBLE for production and quality) and what I am finding really interesting is that the leaf thickness is substantially improved by switching to high P fertilizers. Last year the leaves were very thin and delicate when using lots of N, but I also feel that's why they didn't produce - nutrients I used were all high N slow release.

My trees all fully defoliate in the winter so they are still building out a new coat of leaves, but are doing so rapidly now. Here in 9b they miss the first fruiting period (it flowers when there's still risk of frost and there are no leaves to protect the delicate flowers). I'm really wanting to extend my greenhouse and pack all of them inside it for the winter so this doesn't happen next year.

My grafted vermillion does not produce large fruit, but it makes a ton of them that are sweet but not overwhelmingly so. My black star produces noticeably larger and sweeter fruits, but hardly holds onto any of them or flowers much at all. I've been grafting a lot of the vermillion onto my other plants because it's so much better for production and also added several Zill's grafts this year but have not had any fruit from them. Of note, the Zill's leaves are super thick. My suspicion is that leaf thickness may have something to do with fruit quality and size?

This was an average day in late October. I was getting 10-20 fruit a day from just one 4' plant that's pretty scraggly. I look forward to this year when it builds a better canopy - I up potted from 15 gallon to 25 gallon.



K-Rimes, thanks for the update. Are you sure you have Vermillion and not a Vermillion seedling? Iíve eaten a lot of Vermilion fruit from Leo Manuelís in ground tree and his fruit are quite large and very delicious. Vermillion is so far the best tasting Red fruit Iíve had.

Simon

K-Rimes

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #28 on: May 20, 2021, 04:54:03 PM »


K-Rimes, thanks for the update. Are you sure you have Vermillion and not a Vermillion seedling? Iíve eaten a lot of Vermilion fruit from Leo Manuelís in ground tree and his fruit are quite large and very delicious. Vermillion is so far the best tasting Red fruit Iíve had.

Simon
[/quote]

It has a pretty ugly graft union and was from Papaya Tree Nursery sold to me as grafted vermillion, so, one can assume? I think my nutrition was off last year and nonetheless it produced a lot of fruit, but lacked what it needed to get big. I also have found keeping the roots dry during flowering promotes fruit sets, but perhaps at the expense of overall fruit size.

I expected this to be true of all eugenia, but after experimenting this year is definitely not applicable to grumichama. The slightest bit of dry soil and the peduncle dries up. I am not getting fruit sets to hold on my pitangatuba wet or dry. CORG and calcycina seem to like the dry treatment.

simon_grow

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #29 on: May 20, 2021, 05:23:06 PM »
I bet your fruit will get bigger as it matures. Leoís tree is really large so thatís probably why his fruit gets so big.

Hereís a couple pictures of Jim/Marks thick leaf.






Thatís a fifty cent piece in the picture.

Simon

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #30 on: May 20, 2021, 05:31:23 PM »
Great thread!  I learned quite a bit reading it.

I'm new to the forum.  I got some Zill Dark Pitanga scions from a forum member here and I grafted them onto a seedling Surinam Cherry I got from Exotica Nursery in Vista.  It seems like the grafts have taken!  Anyone growing the Zill Dark here in SoCal?  I too am interested in the production, taste, etc.
Thanks

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #31 on: May 20, 2021, 05:49:53 PM »
Great thread!  I learned quite a bit reading it.

I'm new to the forum.  I got some Zill Dark Pitanga scions from a forum member here and I grafted them onto a seedling Surinam Cherry I got from Exotica Nursery in Vista.  It seems like the grafts have taken!  Anyone growing the Zill Dark here in SoCal?  I too am interested in the production, taste, etc.
Thanks

I have Zill's grafted onto Exotica seedlings as well. I'd been holding out hope that they will produce naturally but got impatient and put some of my vermillion on, and tacked a few Zill's on. I think they may fruit next year (Zill's).

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #32 on: May 21, 2021, 03:56:44 PM »
If anyone does do any air layering or roots cuttings, I'd like to try growing the high quality varieties here.

I have a friend with a big tree, but the quality of the fruit is lacking. Not sure what variety it is.

I'm experimenting with rooting jaboticaba and pitomba cuttings which should be more challenging than pitanga.

Also, of note, the native name in Tupi (the brazilian native language) is pitgana and I much prefer referring to it that way. Does anyone know how it became known as Surinam? Seems disingenuous.

Here are some of my compiled notes, I'm still organizing things, I will work on cleaning it up.. I've failed at propagating pitanga cuttings a few times so far, I've been relying on using a humid container and it rots the wood quickly.. once it warms up I'll try some outdoor in-shade propagation.

If anyone wants to be added as an author/editor - let me know

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1mYXkqn80a0i-uXdy_kPy95PpGZJl91ofv88C0ar9Z5E/edit?usp=sharing

spaugh

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #33 on: May 23, 2021, 12:11:16 AM »
found a ripe big leaf today.  the fruitfool was here and we were looking around and spotted it and we both tried it.  was really good.


Brad Spaugh

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #34 on: May 23, 2021, 12:13:51 AM »
found a ripe big leaf today.  the fruitfool was here and we were looking around and spotted it and we both tried it.  was really good.



Wow, that's awesome size.

bsbullie

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #35 on: May 23, 2021, 12:33:27 AM »
found a ripe big leaf today.  the fruitfool was here and we were looking around and spotted it and we both tried it.  was really good.



Is that your hand or your kid's (trying to judge size)?  How was it?
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spaugh

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #36 on: May 23, 2021, 12:39:52 AM »
Its the fruitfool hand who is a regular size adult.  This is the same fruit Simon has been posting about Jim and Marks thick leaf.  Yeah its really good.  I liked it a lot, didn't have any foul aftertaste.  I have another Surinam plant that makes smaller fruit, this one is much better.  The plant is still small but its more productive that my other one also. 
Brad Spaugh

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #37 on: May 23, 2021, 03:35:19 PM »
Nice thread!

I have a couple of Pitanga's here in Europe that have fruited last year and are all flowering right now. I'll have varieties of five different seed sources to taste test in a month or so. I am in Northern Europe, so I grow these in an unheated greenhouse, where a selection of plants has no trouble handling the -5 Celsius in winter nights.

My best variety is from seeds I bought it from Vitor, a seed collector from Brazil that posted on this forum in 2015 and 2016
The first and second Pitanga I fruited were from these seeds and it was a new fruit to me. After having read everywhere about that strange Diesel or Turpentine flavor I was curious to try, but I couldn't figure out what everyone meant. The first year only one fruited and the cherries were small but delicious. They tasted a bit like Bell peppers to me, but then wiht a more fruity and sweet flavor. The second year the other fruited and it also had that same delicious flavor. Everyone I gave them too loved them, so I was a bit mystified about that aftertaste story.

The last year the first plant from a batch of seed of a supposed orange Pitanga started fruiting, so I tasted one and bingo! -a ll of a sudden I realized what everone meant by Diesel taste.

The plants that are flowering now and I still have to try this year:
 a seedling from Miguel's Regina variety, that he selected in Portugal
 a seedling from a 'mini' Pitanga, also from Vitor from Brazil
 a seedling from Cassio's Black Pitanga, also from Brazil
 a seedling from Casio's Big Red Pitanga, also from Brazil
(I have many pictures but it seems i'm unable to post them here.)

I'll take Brix measurements and measure the fruits as well. My best variety has very small fruits, but they have absolutely not even a hint of turpentine taste - they are rather the size of blueberries then cherries, and any bowl you put on the table finishes quickly. It is super productive, though.

That big leaf variety looks impressive!

shaneatwell

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #38 on: May 23, 2021, 05:34:12 PM »
One of my Regina seedlings is my current favorite. Just setting fruit now. Variable though. The other Regina seedling I have is super small and unremarkable in taste.
Shane

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #39 on: May 24, 2021, 01:34:55 AM »
found a ripe big leaf today.  the fruitfool was here and we were looking around and spotted it and we both tried it.  was really good.



Wow great size, if you have a scale it'd be awesome to have a weight I could add to the spreadsheet.. Here is the largest red I've ever seen - from a facebook post, weighed in at 17 grams.



Satya

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #40 on: May 24, 2021, 08:59:28 AM »
Last fall I order a large quantity of these plastic air layering balls on ebay:



Thought I'd give them a try...

Kevin


We tried the smaller ball and it failed in 100% of air layers :( even on species that layer willingly. though my air layer success normally is pretty high. I saw larger ones on Amazon but decided to continue the old fashioned way.
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simon_grow

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #41 on: May 24, 2021, 09:59:23 AM »
Last fall I order a large quantity of these plastic air layering balls on ebay:



Thought I'd give them a try...

Kevin


We tried the smaller ball and it failed in 100% of air layers :( even on species that layer willingly. though my air layer success normally is pretty high. I saw larger ones on Amazon but decided to continue the old fashioned way.

Satya, those balls worked for me super well. I got 100% successful air layers from them so far but you have to control the soil moisture carefully because of the openings on the top and bottom for the small and medium size and the large size has additional openings on the sides. Iíve had success using all three sizes.

Iíve been air layering for quite a long time and the traditional method takes longer but doesnít require as much up keep because everything is sealed up and there is little moisture loss. With the traditional method, the initial watering is usually enough to get the air layer through till harvesting/removing from the tree.

These new air layering balls are faster but not for those that donít have time to check up on the condition of the soil inside.

On hot days, the smaller balls can dry up very quickly.

I moisten to field capacity for the initial fill and then re water once soil moisture is about 20-30% approximately.

Hereís an air layer I recently removed


This is the smallest size.

Simon

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #42 on: May 24, 2021, 10:35:24 AM »
Hereís some more data on the Jim/Mark thick leaf. Moving forward, Iím just going to call this selection ďJM Thick LeafĒ for short.

My tree is still in a pot and I believe the fruit will get bigger and sweeter if planted into the ground but this variety produces large fruit even in a pot as you can see from the pictures. This particular fruit was harvested today and weighed in at 14.1 grams and measured approximately 1 1/4 inches wide. The Brix was 16.7% Brix and it tasted very sweet with almost no detectable resin flavor although it does have some.






The fruit is as big as a half dollar. I only remembered to take a picture of the width after I squished it for the Brix reading, thus the wet spot.





Sorry but I am out of seeds and scions for this variety since lots of people have contacted me.

Simon

John B

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #43 on: May 24, 2021, 11:23:38 AM »
Simon,

How large would as in-ground tree get here in So-Cal? I keep contemplating if i should get one or not.

K-Rimes

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #44 on: May 24, 2021, 11:32:08 AM »
Simon,

How large would as in-ground tree get here in So-Cal? I keep contemplating if i should get one or not.

They are not tremendously fast growing or big trees. Even in Brazil it was rare to see them more than 15 feet tall, more like a bush really. After 10 years they'll maybe be 10' tall, but can be pretty wide, like 6'.

shaneatwell

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #45 on: May 24, 2021, 12:19:13 PM »
Yeah, slow growing. The San Diego Botanical garden has several pruned as standards and they're ~12' tall. I have kept mine small, 3-4' with light pruning and the oldest has been in the ground maybe 6 years.
Shane

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #46 on: May 24, 2021, 01:02:29 PM »
I've seen them 6ft in pots in about 6 years, seen plenty 15+ feet around here in OC, they seem to love it here..

@Simon thanks for that, I've added it to the spreadsheet, looks like 17 grams is still the largest one.

Also for the air layer ball, since you said they require up-keep, what if you wrap saran wrap and then put the ball?

simon_grow

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #47 on: May 24, 2021, 01:42:07 PM »
If you wrap the ball with Saran Wrap, it will trap the heat and the moisture may steam the roots or cambium. If you wrap in Saran Wrap, it may be wise to cover it with an outside layer of foil as well, shiny side out. This will reflect the sunlight.

Thereís lots of minor details to consider whenever you air layer, especially with these balls. The black color heats up in the sun and will increase the temp of the soil in the ball and increase the rate of root growth but at a specific temperature, the heat may be too much and actually kill the roots.

In early Spring, these balls are great without foil but once temps go up, foil will probably be required.

These trees are relatively easy to maintain at a reasonable height and width. Iím just starting to learn about this fruit and thereís still a lot I donít know.

Does anyone know if Surinam Cherries grow true to seed or similar to seed? Are there clones in the seeds if you get more than one seed in a fruit?

Simon

K-Rimes

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #48 on: May 24, 2021, 02:08:22 PM »
If you wrap the ball with Saran Wrap, it will trap the heat and the moisture may steam the roots or cambium. If you wrap in Saran Wrap, it may be wise to cover it with an outside layer of foil as well, shiny side out. This will reflect the sunlight.

Thereís lots of minor details to consider whenever you air layer, especially with these balls. The black color heats up in the sun and will increase the temp of the soil in the ball and increase the rate of root growth but at a specific temperature, the heat may be too much and actually kill the roots.

In early Spring, these balls are great without foil but once temps go up, foil will probably be required.

These trees are relatively easy to maintain at a reasonable height and width. Iím just starting to learn about this fruit and thereís still a lot I donít know.

Does anyone know if Surinam Cherries grow true to seed or similar to seed? Are there clones in the seeds if you get more than one seed in a fruit?

Simon

I read that about 70% of the time they are true to seed, but this is applicable thus far only to color - ie, planting black fruit seeds = black fruit seedlings 7/10 times. I don't often get double seeds, but I spit them in the garden mostly and haven't been re-seeding much. I had one seedling pop up in the weirdest place and it survived winter which really impressed me.

Pitanga is for real one of the biggest parts of my collection and I adore the fruit. My gf and I are trying to make a pitanga pie this year, but I kind of think it's a waste since the fruit is so good out of hand. I usually eat them every day during the season and it's my favorite stop on my garden walk.

Marcos Gugliemetti has some really unique ones that I grew from seed that have totally different leaf shape than the US ones I've grown from seed. They are suuuuper long leafed and very pointy at the tips and grow pure red growth, very aesthetic. I can't wait to try the fruit from those seedlings.

Of note of the varieties I have: one red unknown seedling, 10' tall, never had fruit from it! Lolita seedling, 6' tall, no fruit yet, I gave up and grafted my productive selected vermillion on it, Black Star is also a shy producer at 10' tall. It is really lanky and poorly built and shares a pot with a strawberry guava which I think is absolutely strangling it. I'm probably going to saw the pot in half and try to split them.

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Re: Hunt for the best Surinam Cherry
« Reply #49 on: May 24, 2021, 02:26:54 PM »
I'mma have to flex on this thread later...

nice pics ya'll, beautiful fruits....
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