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Please welcome new members here and if you have not introduced yourself yet, take a minute to let people know a little bit about yourself.

Introduction from Florida

Postby MsBea » Tue May 03, 2011 5:37 pm

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MsBea
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue May 03, 2011 4:00 pm
Climate Zone: usda zone 9
Hi Everyone:
I live on .26 of an acre with an adjoining undeveloped .23 acre. I was making good progress on my road to self sufficency but had a few setbacks.
1. invasion of devil grass (torpedo grass)
2. two very cold winters wherein I took some very heavy losses, losing a lot of plants. (Mangoes, avocados, bananas, sugar apples, almonds etc.
3. a stroke earlier this year

I love tropical fruits and would welcome suggestions for cold hardy plants for zone 9. Thank you
MsBea

Re: Introduction from Florida

Postby Axel » Tue May 03, 2011 5:53 pm

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Axel
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Posts: 3533
Joined: Thu Nov 18, 2010 8:49 pm
Location: Hanalei Bay, HI & Fallbrook, CA
Climate Zone: 12b/H2 & 10b/S23
Welcome1

Which part of Florida are you in? I am surprised by all the losses. Bananas usually come back from the root, did gophers get them? How did you loose almonds, they seem hardy enough for Florida?
Tropical gardening in both Kaua'i windward Sunset H2/USDA 12b and Fallbrook Sunset 23/USDA 10b.

Re: Introduction from Florida

Postby RodneyS » Tue May 03, 2011 6:41 pm

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RodneyS
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Joined: Fri Nov 26, 2010 6:41 am
Location: Cerritos, CA
Climate Zone: USDA Zone 11a
Greetings MsBea!
It's unfortunate to hear you had a stroke earlier this year. I wish you all the best & godspeed with the recovery process. I've had a health problem, as well, for the last 3 years. At the moment, I'm in the clear but who knows what tomorrow will bring. Can't wait to hear about all the new fruit trees that you're growing

Re: Introduction from Florida

Postby MsBea » Tue May 03, 2011 7:21 pm

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MsBea
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue May 03, 2011 4:00 pm
Climate Zone: usda zone 9
I am from East Central Florida. Many people whohad well established fruit trees lot them this past winter. My almonds died to the ground as did mangoes,avocados, seaside grapes and all my bananas died back. Some of them had young fruit on. I lost nine coconut palms.
Looking for cold hardy fruit trees of many kinds because my goal is an edible forest garden.
Would love a big jim loquat or two. loquats are not fazed by the cold
MsBea

Re: Introduction from Florida

Postby wednesdayfriday » Tue May 03, 2011 8:53 pm

wednesdayfriday
 
Posts: 9
Joined: Mon May 02, 2011 3:08 pm
Climate Zone: 8b
Hi, I'm in the top of zone 9, but it's really 8b. I put in an almond 2 years ago and it died early last winter. They are hardy but our summer humidity and dry winters can stress them. There are Mexican avocados that take temps into the teens, but they need to get established. I also planted 2 satsumas, which is a very hardy citrus. One died, the other is struggling. These winters have made it very hard to establish anything. I was experimenting with bananas. They all grew back the 1st winter, but I lost half this winter. My Cherry of the Rio Grande died too. I have no knowledge of a hardy mango and it's my favorite fruit.

If you can plant near a heat sink like a pool, body of water or your house, it helps. Growing for self sufficiency frequently means sacrificing some of your favorites for what is dependable. And most tropicals are just too tender. Apples aren't that reliable here and while peach/plum/nectarines are, their life expectancy is short. I seem to be the only one who can't get a passion vine to come back, but I have keep a few sheltered pineapples. My olives wintered pretty well, but fruiting has yet to be seen. Pineapple guava and goji are sorta okay. Lost one of my hardy kiwis (don't know if it was the male or female). Pomegranate is okay but appears to do better with shelter. Persimmons are holding up, as are the blueberries, chestnuts, pecans, black walnut, loquats, mulberry, figs and muscadines.

Best of luck.

Re: Introduction from Florida

Postby Axel » Tue May 03, 2011 8:56 pm

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Axel
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Posts: 3533
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Location: Hanalei Bay, HI & Fallbrook, CA
Climate Zone: 12b/H2 & 10b/S23
MsBea, I am still puzzled by the almonds, since they are hardy. You must be talking about a tropical version of an almond.

There is a lot of stuff that should be hardy enough for East Central Florida. Don't give up on tropicals, this past Winter was an anomaly.
Tropical gardening in both Kaua'i windward Sunset H2/USDA 12b and Fallbrook Sunset 23/USDA 10b.

Re: Introduction from Florida

Postby MsBea » Wed May 04, 2011 5:11 am

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MsBea
 
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Joined: Tue May 03, 2011 4:00 pm
Climate Zone: usda zone 9
Thanks. Axel the two almond trees were given to me by a friend who is a member of rare tropical fruits so they may have been a tropical type. My bananas migh have done a better comebak but I got the stroke in February so was unable to do a timely cleanup. The coconuts are gone, two sets of kiwis, just a huge loss. Even the fiddlewood which are native died to the roots.

Wednesdayfriday: I will take notes. I am aware that I will not have all I crave but I am working towards a healhier lifestyle. I heard that Namdocmai mangoes hold up well. we shall see.
I will have to to some major research to find shrubs and perennials that will hold up to the heat and cold.
MsBea

Re: Introduction from Florida

Postby wednesdayfriday » Fri May 06, 2011 11:15 am

wednesdayfriday
 
Posts: 9
Joined: Mon May 02, 2011 3:08 pm
Climate Zone: 8b
I'll look into those, I figured I'd have to set up a green house if I wanted mango.

Axel, Central Florida is very hard on almonds. And we've had two "anomalous" winters in a row. I'm not convinced that we aren't in a period of colder weather that may last years if not longer. Because of our limited c.u., "Gulf Prince" is about the only good cultivar. It's not too easy to find or cheap. Because of our late periodic frosts, it can come out of dormancy early and sustain damage. I was very enthusiastic to plant almonds and everyone I spoke with tried to discourage me, including the CA Almond Board. My attempt was not successful.
I'm all for experimenting and seeing what works, but be aware that there is an undercurrent of disappointment and frustration here. Too many repeated failures, may lead many to give up all together.


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