Exotic fruit trees

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ritamax

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Re: Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #15 on: October 15, 2012, 10:06:58 AM »
Thank you, John, for the detailed informations! I read, that feijoa needs a cold spell in winter to flower and fruit well and that the guava is dislikes salinity. I did actually try a homemade sugary feijoa jam once in the former Soviet Union in the 1980's and the taste was exquisite. Those feijoas probably came from the former Soviet republic Georgia. 
Hobbygardener (MGS member) with a rooftop garden in Basel and a garden on heavy clay with sand 600m from seaside in Costa Blanca South (precipitation 300mm), learning to garden waterwise

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John J

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Re: Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #16 on: October 15, 2012, 01:56:10 PM »
I don't know how cold a cold spell is but my Acca (Feijoa) down here on the southern coast of Cyprus rarely get anywhere near to 0 degrees C, even at night. They flower and fruit pretty well even so. Maybe our Antipodean colleagues can correct me if I'm wrong but I believe that New Zealand is a major grower of these fruit.
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)

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ritamax

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Re: Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #17 on: October 15, 2012, 06:01:23 PM »
Good to know, we have similar conditions, no frosts. I just read, that feijoa comes from highlands and that for good flowering it would ideally need 100-200 hours of chill, the flowering and the fruit flavour under 50 hours of chill being poorer.
Hobbygardener (MGS member) with a rooftop garden in Basel and a garden on heavy clay with sand 600m from seaside in Costa Blanca South (precipitation 300mm), learning to garden waterwise

pamela

  • Sr. Member
Re: Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #18 on: November 02, 2012, 11:02:38 PM »
John you are right New Zealand is a major gower of Feijoa (Acca sellowiana) although I think it originates in either Chile or Peru.
Many New Zealand households have a tree in their garden but the fruit there is much bigger and juicier than I can grow in Spain.  It is totally delicious with a wonderful scent and be eaten raw and cooked (mainly stewed). It doesnt travel well for export as it is subject to a brown spot.  You must eat it when it is just soft to press.   Peel the skin and then eat the delicious fruit. I was brought up on them together with Kiwifruit. It needs a frost or two. My cousin grew them for export on the hills around Lake Rotorua, where frosts abound in winter. Hers were delicious. She tells me they are heavy feeders and need manure (NZ has plenty of that!) several times a year.
Jávea, Costa Blanca, Spain
Min temp 5c max temp 38c  Rainfall 550 mm 

"Who passes by sees the leaves;
 Who asks, sees the roots."
     - Charcoal Seller, Madagascar

Umbrian

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Re: Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #19 on: November 03, 2012, 07:38:36 AM »
Not sure if this posting should be here or under a new heading, most likely here  :-\ I am shortly to "inherit" a quite large Diospyros kaki and have never found the fruit very palatable. Any tips on when they are best eaten and how? Also the tree has been left to its own devices for quite a long time I think and needs a bit of remedial pruning, when is the best time to do this? The lower branches hang down beautifully but I have noticed several new vertical branches that not only spoil the overall shape of the tree but will also make it too large if allowed to continue.
MGS member living and gardening in Umbria, Italy for past 19 years. Recently moved from my original house and now planning and planting a new small garden.

Alice

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Re: Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #20 on: November 03, 2012, 02:23:07 PM »
Concerning the fruit of exotic trees: we have noticed that guavas (the fruit of Psidium guajava) seem to attract the Mediterranean fruit fly. Have other forum members had similar experiences with exotic fruit, especially ones with heady aromas?
Amateur gardener who has gardened in north London and now gardens part of the year on the Cycladic island of Paros. Conditions: coastal, windy, annual rainfall 350mm, temp 0-35 degrees C.

pamela

  • Sr. Member
Re: Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #21 on: November 03, 2012, 07:53:26 PM »
Carol, I have 2 D.kaki.The first is the old fashioned Japanese'Hachiya' variety about the size and shape of a large peach but must be eaten when very soft and when the skin is splitting. If it is semi-soft, it is furry and astringent and it is usually this taste that people dont like.  The second is similar to the Israeli cultivar 'Sharon' Fruit which I am sure you have seen in UK supermarkets over the years. This can be eaten while crisp and is not astringent.  They are so pretty now with all the golden fruit hanging on the branches. They like cold weather,too. My friend in Milan grows them..so they should be excellent for you.
Jávea, Costa Blanca, Spain
Min temp 5c max temp 38c  Rainfall 550 mm 

"Who passes by sees the leaves;
 Who asks, sees the roots."
     - Charcoal Seller, Madagascar

David Bracey

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Re: Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #22 on: November 07, 2012, 10:16:39 AM »
Kakis are best left on the tree as long as possible so that they are truly ripe and the skins are splitting-  Always eat the flesh with a spoon and never eat the skin.
MGS member.

 I have gardened in sub-tropical Florida, maritime UK, continental Europe and the Mediterranean basin, France. Of the 4 I have found that the most difficult climate for gardening is the latter.

pamela

  • Sr. Member
Re: Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #23 on: November 11, 2012, 05:54:02 PM »
'never eat the skin'   The skin on our Kaki is so fragile you dont know you are eating it.  Is there a reason for not eating the skin? I am intrigued...
Jávea, Costa Blanca, Spain
Min temp 5c max temp 38c  Rainfall 550 mm 

"Who passes by sees the leaves;
 Who asks, sees the roots."
     - Charcoal Seller, Madagascar

David Bracey

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Re: Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #24 on: November 11, 2012, 09:49:53 PM »
Yes the skins are often bitter, at least in my experience.  You are correct the skin of the kaki is very fine and peels easily.

Have you noticed the autumn colour of the kaki this year, almost black in places.?

MGS member.

 I have gardened in sub-tropical Florida, maritime UK, continental Europe and the Mediterranean basin, France. Of the 4 I have found that the most difficult climate for gardening is the latter.

helenaviolet

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Re: Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #25 on: January 18, 2013, 05:30:31 AM »
Hooray! I found mention of Mespilus germanica the Medlar tree here at MGS - thankyou John  :)

Every 'Mediterranean Garden' needs a Medlar tree. It has an amazing ancient history and was certainly cultivated by the Greeks and Romans. A delightful small ornamental tree giving spring blossom, shady green foliage, autumn colour and interesting fruit. Also it is very easy to grow requiring minimum care. One of my favourites. Obviously I am very enthusiastic about the good old-fashioned Medlar which was once very popular in Victorian times. Oh after dinner the thing to do was serve a glass of Port with a fully ripe Medlar fruit to be eaten with a silver spoon.     
I live in Central Victoria, Australia. This is very much a "Mediterranean" climate with long hot summers and cold frosty winters. Citrus grows well here. I am interested in species and cultivars of Viola which will grow in this climate.

Jill S

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Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #26 on: July 02, 2014, 09:55:40 AM »
John, question - where/how do you obtain all your varied fruit trees? do you grow from seed, from cuttings, or from suppliers as and when you see them? or is it all of the above?
Member of RHS and MGS. Gardens in Surrey, UK and, whenever I get the chance, on Paros, Greece where the learning curve is not the only thing that's steep.

Alice

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Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #27 on: July 02, 2014, 10:57:42 AM »
And another question: is the Feijoa fruit tasty? We have two plants and there has been the odd flower but no fruit yet.
Amateur gardener who has gardened in north London and now gardens part of the year on the Cycladic island of Paros. Conditions: coastal, windy, annual rainfall 350mm, temp 0-35 degrees C.

pamela

  • Sr. Member
Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #28 on: July 02, 2014, 12:16:44 PM »
Alice, Feijoas are a delicious fruit.  I was brought up in New Zealand and as children together with Tamarillos (tree tomatoes), kiwifruit and passion fruit we ate them voraciously and regularly.   Acca sellowiana, comes from the lower Andes and needs water and some winter 'chilling'.  They have a wonderful scented flavour and can be eaten when they drop and the skin is slightly soft to press.  They can ripen from hard in a fruit bowl but they do go brown easily. That is why they are not a good export fruit. I have four trees here in Spain and although we get some fruit every year the trees look sparse and are not the voluptuous specimens laden with fruit that you can find in New Zealand.  It is entirely due to the rainfall and chill factor.  The red flowers are very pretty. 
Jávea, Costa Blanca, Spain
Min temp 5c max temp 38c  Rainfall 550 mm 

"Who passes by sees the leaves;
 Who asks, sees the roots."
     - Charcoal Seller, Madagascar

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John J

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Exotic fruit trees
« Reply #29 on: July 02, 2014, 12:34:12 PM »
Jill S, the answer to your question is all of the above. The Acca bushes for example I grew from seeds bought from Chiltern Seeds in UK many years ago. Our Mango I grew from a stone brought by a friend from UK who was over on holiday. She had got the original fruit from a relative who was visiting her from her native Jamaica. We had a Mulberry that was grown from a cutting taken from the tree that grew outside my wife's family home when she was growing up. Many of our plants, not only the fruit trees, have tales to tell.
Alice, our Acca (Feijoa) fruit are probably not as fully developed and juicy as they would be if grown in a more temperate climate with access to more water. Ours are not situated in the, for want of a better word, orchard area of our property with the majority of the other fruit trees where there is irrigation and so they probably don't get as much water as they really need. In consequence the fruit are quite small, the flesh is fairly firm and almost gritty in texture. The taste is not unpleasant and with a slightly sharp after taste that could, perhaps, explain its common name of Pineapple Guava. My wife has on occasion made a sort of jam/preserve from them. I believe they are grown commercially in New Zealand so maybe one of our antipodean colleagues could tell us what they should really taste like.
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)