Walk Through my Garden

hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CAFebruary 26, 2011

I thought I'd take the opportunity to post a few photos of my growing home orchard since this forum has been so helpful in my choices.

The first set of photos is of my front yard slope. It faces south, and is a nice gentle slope. I used this space to plant all my avocados, as well as a few "odds & ends". Starting from the lowest point by the driveway, and working up, I have planted a White Sapote, an Oro Blanco grapefruit, and a very small Valencia Pride mango. I'm going to add a Page and Gold Nugget mandarins. Then, above I have my avocadoes: Holiday, Lamb Hass, Littlecado, Jan Boyce, Nimlioh, Kona Sharwil and Sir Prize. My Holiday, Jan Boyce, Nimlioh and Kona Sharwil are small, and probably won't produce for about 2 years, but the rest all have lots of flowers, so I'll have some nice avos this year, as well as some Page mandarins, and my Melogold has one fruit that will be ready this spring, and looks like it will have some blossoms pushing out here pretty soon. The trees in containers in the first photo are for the south part of my yard, the lowest (and coldest) part of my yard. You can see my Anna, Dorsett Golden, Pink Lady and Red Fuji apple. The Anna is blooming and beginning to set fruit, and oddly, the Pink Lady is also blooming (not the Dorsett). I also have a Minnie Royal and Royal Lee cherry. You might also be able to pick out my poms, which will be going in the back yard on the north side (south facing slope), just below all my citrus. I have a Phil's Sweet, Wonderful, Pink Satin and a Sweet. I have an Eversweet and a Parfianka on its way from Raintree:

And you can see the little Holiday and larger Littlecado and Lamb Hass in this next photo, and in the second photo if you look hard, beyond the Lamb Hass is the Sir Prize (and if you really look hard, you can see the Nimlioh):

And here's a shot of my little Nimlioh avocado. It the Jan Boyce and Kona Sharwil are all about this size, pretty small. and the Jan Boyce and Kona got a little nipped a few weeks ago, when we had some temp dips I didn't anticipate. Interestingly, the Nimlioh, which is 100% Guatamalean was not nipped, which surprised both me and Dave at Bonita Creek Nursery, when I got these 3 great avos. You can also see it has put out a flush already, so it and the JB and Kona are getting covered up tonight, since it's going to be very chilly again, with this northern storm sweeping down across San Diego county today and this evening:

And here's my tiny little Valencia Pride mango. It has a ways to go before I see any fruit, but it is liking it's location, and doing well:

Here's a shot from the top of the slope, looking down, which gives you much better perspective on how much area I have to work with, pretty fortunate to have this much room:

This photo is a little further up the driveway where I have 5 dwarf variegated Calamondin along the edge of the driveway. I had to replace two of them due to not being watered regularly, and they were just on their way out. I added a 5th where I had a space (the one in the foreground). Haven't used the fruit yet - they were planted by the previous owner for their ornamental value, but I think I'll try to pick some of the fruit to make some preserves:

And a cool closeup of the variegated fruit, got these additional variegated Calamondins at my local Lowe's of all places. I ended up buying all 3 of them at varying times. No one wanted them, guess they didn't realize how very lovely these are in a landscape, even if you don't eat the fruits. Everyone else's loss, my gain:

And these photos are of the backyard, again, on the north side of my lot and facing south. Most of my citrus are here, as well as 3 fig trees that were here when I moved in. I have a Rio Red, Melogold and Coctail grapefruit, as well as a Bearss lime, Pixie and Algerian Clementine mandarins, I planted last year. I'm adding a Cara Cara navel on Sunday. There were some very neglected citrus already planted but in pretty bad shape. There was a Meyer Lemon that despite being neglected is just full of lemons, two other lemons of unknown varieties (probably Eurekas, not thorny enough to be Lisbon), two orange trees that I just figured out were orange trees, probably Valencia of some variety. I have 3 figs, a very large Panache (which was superbly delicious last year), a tiny Brown Turkey (about 2 feet tall), that actually had 3 figs last year, and a revived Flanders that I'm hoping will provide fruit this year, as I "found" it buried inside a huge rosemary bush! I will be putting the poms on the slope in some blank areas below the top where the citrus and figs are:

First photo is the far west side, then the middle, and finally the furthest east, starting to head south. All the citrus and figs are up on the very top, out of the sprinkling system, and on their own dedicated drip system. I plan on planting my 6 poms down on the slope, intermingled with the lavender, rosemary and santolina. That hillside is alive with hundreds bees every day, so I have optimal pollinating! You can see the abandoned Valencia orange orchard in the background in the last photos. Very sad to see these elegant, 40 year old trees struggling to survive. Breaks my heart:

Now, we're up on the top of the slope, for some close ups of what's planted up here. Here's the Rio Red grapefruit. Planted this last summer. all the grapefruit absolutely love this spot, they have put out two flushes and are all full of flowers. The odd yellowing you see on a few of the leaves is due to some burning from last summer, due to spraying for Citrus Leafminer (spinosid + Volk oil). It has about 8 fruit just about ready to pick, plus a gazillion flowers (all the white phermone traps you see hanging in the citrus are for CLM as well):

This is one of the unknown lemons. This poor little tree was in pretty bad shape, nearly dead. It is coming back, and I think it might be a Meyer, since the lemons look pretty thin skinned, and round. You can see my little Melogold peeking out behind it:

And a closeup of the fruit, which is why I'm pretty sure it's a Meyer:

And here's the Cocktail grapefruit (not really a true grapefruit of course, a cross between a pumello and a mandarin), and you can see it's VERY happy. It is amazing how gigantic the blossoms are. I will probably have to thin this tree, or the amount of fruit it will set will bend this little guy right over:

Here's a shot of the Panache Fig (lovely white trunk) in the background, and from the left, my Bearss lime, Cocktail and unknown tiny orange (probably a Valencia). Behind the Valencia is the Melogold. Out of the shot to the right of the Melogold was the Flanders Fig which is about 6' tall that was uncovered when I trimmed back an out of control rosemary bush, a wonderful discovery:

Here's a photo of the Meyer Improved lemon just full of ready to pick lemons. They keep on the tree very nicely all spring and summer, providing me with the most delicious lemonade almost year round:

And here's a shot of the unknown lemon (probably Eureka). This tree was in such bad shape, I wasn't quite sure what kind of citrus it was. Suspected lemon or lime due to a few thorns. It is absolutely full, full, full of lovely lemons, and flowering like mad right now. Have to get out there and trim those really tall branches up top, to keep the tree producing and branching lower (you see the orchard in the background):

And some shots of the lemons on it (one shows a run in with a roof rat, #$%@& varmints):

And here's a photo of the larger unknown orange tree. Again, totally unrecognizeable and I thought dead due to extreme damage from rats and ground squirrels. It is amazing this came back, and is actually doing very well. It will probably never have a nice shape, but I think it will produce some nice oranges for me. Again, very clear view of the abandoned orchard in the background:

And this shot is looking south, you can see the Meyer on the right, and my Moro blood orange in the foreground on the left. Directly behind it and sort of hidden is the Pixie mandarin, and in the background to the left of the Meyer is the Algerian Clementine mandarin:

Here's a shot of my Melogold grapefruit, which is my favorite grapefruit. It's full of blossoms and some have already set teeny fruits:

Lastly, my little espaliered Anna. This is up against the north side of my house. And no, I didn't plant it. Previous owners were more into design than function, so this poor little Anna struggles to provide fruit, since it gets very little sun. It will get moved this December to some spot that gets full sun, just not sure where I can squeeze it it:

I'm going to be putting down 4" of shredded mulch in the next week or so, and also laying down some flagstone for a path that both we and my busy Aussie walk. Since Cooper "patrols" the yard for coyotes, he has made a path between the trees. It is a logical path, and so that he doesn't wear out the mulch down to dirt and we have a nice place to walk, we're just going to "go with it", and lay down a nice flagstone path that will wander between the trees.

Next project is the south and low side of our yard, which we'll be starting on very shortly. That's where the apples and cherries will go. Once we get it cleared out, and some hardscaping done, I'm hoping well have enough room to add a few more stone fruits, like apricots, nectarines, pluots, apriums, plum and peach. Will be doing my homework for best varieties for my area, best taste and most disease resistant. I have avoided stone fruits because to me, they're "high maintanence" and I don't like using noxious sprays. So far, I have on my list Cot-n-Candy or Flavor Delight aprium, Arctic Star nectarine, possibly a Spice-Lee Nectaplum, Flavor King Pluot, possibly a Donut peach, and everyone says a Blenheim apricot is a standard for my area of S. Calif. Any and all opinions are welcome. I like my fruit very sweet, and not tart, along with the other above attributes. Hope I can squeeze all that in, along with my 4 apples and two cherries. It will be a "same hole" planting concept, but all in a row, and all semi-dwarf and kept pruned down so I can stand and pick. And to cover, since I have a profusion of wildlife from birds to rodents who would make a meal of my stone fruit!

Hope you all enjoy a little walk through my garden. We still have more projects to go, including spiffing up my little English knot garden which you can see a wee bit of in one of the photos. But that's for maybe this summer or fall.

Patty S.

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sffog(10/SanFran)

thank you for sharing, beautiful

    Bookmark   February 26, 2011 at 9:05PM
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loribee2(CA 9)

Wow, absolutely beautiful!

    Bookmark   February 26, 2011 at 11:12PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Thank you, sffog and lori. Since I don't really have one single, large open area I can dedicate to just a backyard orchard, I have to sort of fit things in where I have space. Fortunately, the 3 areas I have open are great for the specific trees I've planted there. The front slope is perfect for avocados (our entire development used to be an old Hass avocado orchard, in fact), and the back yard at the very top of my slope is the hottest part of my yard, and very protected. You can see from the photo that our neighbor's to the north of us are about 30 to 40 feet above our lot, so we get great wind blocks from the north, and my row of olive trees on the west side break the ocean breezes a little bit, so my grapefruit are really loving it! And the south side of our lot is our low spot, so all the stone fruit and apples will be happy down there. Fruit trees in 3 separate places, but it kind of makes the yard a fun adventure!

Patty S.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2011 at 11:33PM
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sib5(socal9)

Dave Wilson Nursery online has best fruit taste-testing results that I'm aware of.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2011 at 1:59AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

sib, that's actually where I got a lot of my choices from. In fact, I emailed Tom Spellman, who is DWN's So. Cal. salesperson, and whose opinion is highly respected about a couple of things. Tom has a page called, "Tom's Top 21" where he offers up his top fruit tree picks for us here in S. California, see link below, which is where I've pulled some of the stone fruit tree options. They're a great source for sure.

Patty S.

Here is a link that might be useful: DWN-Tom's Top 21 Fruit Tree Picks

    Bookmark   February 27, 2011 at 10:21AM
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la_kitty

Very beautiful, but how will you control the rodents! I have fruit trees too but the fruit rats are disgusting! I don't know how to keep them away from the figs, pomegranate, plum and apricot. They do not seem to bother the citrus but they love my neighbor's avocado! Tell me your secrets! Thank you.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2011 at 1:15PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Well, good question. The rats leave my figs alone (but not the birds), and they seem to have a preference for my poor wee Anna as well as a pom I have down on the south side of my yard, that ends up only having about 15 to 20 apples. Very frustrating. The best I can do is set a lot of snap traps. I don't want to use a T-trap system with rat poison because I don't want my dog to get to a poisoned rat, nor do I want a hawk or owl to pick one up, either. My big rat snap traps (bought at Lowe's, they're big black plastic traps) set with peanut butter work pretty well. The trick is setting enough of them, and where the dog can't get to the trap (since he loves peanut butter, too.) We really have a problem here in N. San Diego county with roof rats, and of course being so close to the abandoned orchard, I have a plethora of pest issues to deal with. Kind of rough, but we'll see how my trap system works this year.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2011 at 2:04PM
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passion4passies(9B)

Beautiful garden! Love the photography, and the fruits. Thanks for allowing us to see your lovely garden ;)

    Bookmark   February 28, 2011 at 5:38PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Thank you, passion! Glad everyone has enjoyed the photos. It will look tons better once I get all the mulch down. That should happen in the next couple weeks. Hasn't been mulched in several years, and it is showing.

Patty s.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2011 at 6:18PM
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jenn(SoCal 9/19)

Amazing! Thanks for the tour. I would love to get lost in there.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2011 at 9:16PM
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Dick_Sonia(Sunset 17)

Where's the Vistor's Center?

    Bookmark   April 16, 2011 at 9:58PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Thanks Jenn and Dick! Very cute, Dick :-) Actually, I'm hoping to go on the Master Gardener tour next year or year after, if I can get my English Knot garden spiffed up a wee bit more. That's the last project. I'll post some updated photos. I've also added an entire "walk & pick" orchard in the lower part of my yard, now, where I've got all my stone fruits and my apples (all those pots you saw are now planted, and there are nice flagstone steps starting up the citrus and avocado row). I've also added 7 different pomagranates to the back hillside (pictures 10 & 11), so we'll have some pretty reddish orange flowers popping up pretty soon to give all that green and silver a little pop of color. I'm going to be snapping some first photos of the walk & pick orchard, which isn't quite done, yet, but looks pretty as it is now. Very happy with how it came out!

Patty S.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2011 at 11:25PM
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APPLEJACK27(9b)

If you could only grow 5 fruit trees for the rest of your life, what varieties would they be?

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 2:24AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Gosh, this was an old thread! Well, tough question. For now, probably a Seedless Kishu mandarin, Melogold or Cocktail grapefruit (that's a toughie), Jan Boyce avocado, Comice pear, and Fuji apple. That doesn't leave any room for any stone fruits, but if I could ONLY have 5, it would be these 5 for me. The pear might change as my 17 different varieties mature, and I find one I like better than Comice, which is entirely possible. But that would be my 5.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 2:45AM
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APPLEJACK27(9b)

what stone fruits would you add?

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 3:26AM
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willajo

I am officially jealous = ) Thank's for the great pictures!

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 10:47AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Well, if I were to only pick one, probably one of the pluots. Dapple Dandy is the only one I've had. I have several that will have their first crops this year. Also, and apricot cutlivar, again, my stone fruits are too young for me to make a definitive choice. All my stone fruits are on their second year in the ground. I'm not a huge stone fruit fan - my hubby is - and I'm trying to develop more of a taste for them. I would also add a fig tree, and for right now, that would be Panache, but I have several new cultivars growing, including the very coveted Ronde de Bordeaux, so that may also change.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 11:09AM
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APPLEJACK27(9b)

The only pluot I've had was a geo pride(real nice). Hows the Dapple Dandy? I just planted two 4 in 1 pluot trees and a nectaplum. looking to add an aprium and a peacotum tree as well. I'm a sucker for the whole concept of hybrid fruit. hopefully it will live up to the hype and not be some clever marketing scheme. Your orchard is outstanding.If you have little ones, you're putting them on the right path for better eating.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 12:46PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Thanks, Willajo. These are old photos. Things have developed significantly since. I'll post new photos maybe this weekend. applejack, I have had Dapple Dandy here in my neck of the woods (San Diego county, CA) from the Farmer's Market, and they were excellent. Very surprised, considering it's had some detractors. I think pluots can really vary across different growing conditions. Here they seem to do quite well, and have been pretty consistent. I have two grafted trees starting up nicely that I just grafted to rootstock about 3 weeks ago, so I should have two trees to go in the ground fairly soon. I have the Bella Gold peacotum which is finally breaking dormancy for me. Just about the last of all my stone fruits to break dormancy. And no little ones - all my girls are adults, now, but yes, they were raised this way :-) And they all do have a bit of the gardening bug, and I am sure once they have a little land of their own and out of apartments/condos, will all have lovely gardens themselves. They are all dating fellows who also have an interest in gardening, which is very cool.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 1:01PM
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gotsomerice(Sunset 23)

Patty,
Where did you get your Valencia Pride Mango?

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 6:45PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

At Bonita Creek Nursery in Bonita.

Patty S.

Here is a link that might be useful: Bonita Creek Nursery

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 6:48PM
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APPLEJACK27(9b)

Patty - San Diego is nice.Especially Old Town. Ever ate at Casa De Pico? If not, worth checking out. I have 2 little ones that I'm trying to get into gardening like my mom did for me. My boy loves to help out and is pretty inquisitive about the yard.Pretty unique considering the video game era that kids dwell in now a days.His sister is still too young but she loves to be outside.

I just picked up a Bella Gold Peacotum yesterday. Are you using Favor Grenade as a polinator and have you ever had a peacotum before? real curious about the flavor.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2012 at 12:47PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

I haven't been to Casa de Pico, but it sounds like a good place to go. We've been talking about getting down to Old Town or the Gaslight District one of these weekends.

I'm using a later pluto, Flavor Finale, as a cross pollinator. I didn't want to plant Flavor Grenade, but wanted to try Flavor Finale, as it seemed to have a few more positive comments. So, we'll see how it does. And no, haven't tasted one, yet. Both are very late for me, just now coming out of dormancy.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2012 at 6:25PM
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Min3 South S.F. Bay CA

what breathtaking pictures of your beautiful place! i wonder how many of your last year's plans have been accomplished. i am looking forward to your photo updates.

we had to give up our six tree 'orchard' because along with all the same critters you have, we had gophers attacking the trees from underneath. getting any fruit for ourselves was hopeless without doing major construction above and below ground, like a prison compound for the trees.

fyi: you CAN use rat poison if it is the kind that doesn't secondarily kill. for our barn we use fastrac that we buy online from the company. it has been very effective and we don't have to worry about our dogs eating the dead rodents.
min

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 10:34AM
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    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 10:42AM
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hosenemesis(SoCal Sunset 19 USDA 8b)

"Where's the Vistor's Center?" Heh heh heh.

How did I miss this thread? Wow. I can smell your yard from here, and it smells like heaven. I love your pretty little Anna.

Renee

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 1:41PM
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hosenemesis(SoCal Sunset 19 USDA 8b)

Min, I gave up too. I would never make it as a peasant.
Renee

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 1:43PM
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gotsomerice(Sunset 23)

Patty,
How big is your property?

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 6:02PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Yup, min, I use poison for both rats and ground squirrels. My dogs wouldn't eat a poisoned rat or squirrel, and even if they did, my dogs are big - 50 to 70 lbs. Not enough anticoagulant in a dead rat or poison to hurt my dogs, and even if they became symptomatic, a shot of Vit. K will immediately reverse the poison (I'm and RN, and had long conversations with my vet about that.) I am a little concerned about my younger Aussie getting into the feed stations, though, so I plan on securing them either by pounding them in with rebar, or hooking them to my cyclone fencing, depending upon where the bait station is. I only have two where they can get to them, as I keep them out of my lower yard.

Thanks, Renee, appreciate you compliments coming from someone with a spectacular yard. I'll post up new photos so you can see how the front slope has grown, and the additional citrus I've planted since them (about doubled).

gotsomerice, I have about an acre and all very useable. We may end up on the SD Hort Society Garden tour next year, if we decide to do a N. County tour next year. Depends on whether or not I can get a few things spiffed up by then.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 8:55PM
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Min3 South S.F. Bay CA

everybody keep in mind that the regular rat poisons kill owls and other birds who eat the dead or dying rodents.
just sayin'. (sorry to be such a drag.) min

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 11:02PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

min, the poison bait you mention that doesn't have "kill through", would this also apply to owls and hawks? They're not very big. I wonder if that is true for smaller predators. I do worry about this, it's the only downside. And, I see that this poison also has no antidote? Again, just a little concerned if my more curious 6 mo. old Aussie was able to get into the bait station. Plus, it seems pretty expensive. It may not be in comparison to what I'm buying, haven't bought a big quantity since last year, so I'll have to check.

And Renee, the "Vistor's Center" is open for you any time :-)

Patty S.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2012 at 10:03AM
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Min3 South S.F. Bay CA

patty- i found the company to be very willing to talk to me on the phone about their product. the man i spoke to assured me that there is no secondary killing for birds or animals who eat the poisoned rodents. since you are an r.n. you might be able to ask them more informed questions and i'd be interested in anything you can find out to reassure you about using it.

yes, there is no antidote and that is why we are extremely careful to keep the bait traps out of reach of our dogs or any children who might come to visit us. luckily rats will climb into high corners of the barn! we cut a rat-sized hole high up in a big milk jug that is tied to a rafter and pour the LOOSE bait inside them because we don't want a rat to carry a whole packet somewhere else.

we buy the fastrac pacs by the bucketful which makes it a bit cheaper. we think it's been very worth not threatening our owls. i'm glad you are interested for the same reason. min

    Bookmark   April 7, 2012 at 11:58AM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Your property is wonderful. I'm glad the thread got revived, I missed it last year. Did you get any cherries? I'm still contemplating getting those two.

Meyer Lemons are the best!

    Bookmark   April 7, 2012 at 8:38PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

I have a few cherries this year, hoovb. So, I'm hoping I can eat them and keep them from the birds. I think I'll probably net the trees this week to try to protect the few that managed to get pollenized. They did not quite bloom at the same time again this year. Closer than last year, though. I figure by next year, I should have a nice little crop on both trees.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2012 at 9:52AM
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mango908

hoosierquilt,
WOW.
your yard is just BEAUTIFUL. The slopes make me wish I was on my view property up north. I live in So.Calif on a half acre lot. I use hot chopped red peppers from a blender,and place them directly under the roots.I suppose this is cruel punishment, but those golfers will destroy your beautiful garden. After two years,they have just about vanish. Well, gone over to my neighbors.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2012 at 10:18PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Hmm, worth a try. I haven't caught any, yet, which surprises me, because I'm usually pretty good at setting traps. So, I'll have to pull them all out, and look for new mounds. I'll try the hot peppers, that will also keep the dogs away from the traps, too. I was able to trap one of two bunnies that got trapped inside my yard after putting up snake fencing all around. Released the bunny on the other side of the fence, so hopefully I can get the second one. Only two (so far!!), so at least one of the bunnies is gone!

Patty S.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 9:55AM
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trandd

Wow... it's a huge lot.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 8:54PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Thanks, Trandd. We have a little over an acre. All the lots in our development are on acre lots. It makes for a really nice, private homes. Even though my lots slopes from north to south (facing the house from the street, that would be left to right), it is a fairly gentle slope and it's all very usable. We have a very nice area to garden, I feel very fortunate to have this much land in S. California!

Patty S.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 11:35PM
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modern_miss(10A (15 Sunset) SF Bay Area CA)

Hi Patty,
your garden is truly inspiring. I aspire to have as many fruit trees as you do - but I have to figure out how plant them intensively. I'm not sure whether to try some new dwarf varieties or to plant several semi dwarfs in one hole (or in a row - close together) and prune...do you have an opinion about the best way to go about this?

Also, in April of 2012, you said your 5 favorite fruits were "seedless Kishu mandarin, Melogold or Cocktail grapefruit (that's a toughie), Jan Boyce avocado, Comice pear, and Fuji apple." Are these still in your top 5 favorites or have they changed since then.

Thanks for the update!
MM

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 4:22PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Well, thank you for your kind words. I am very blessed to have a lovely, lovely piece of property in a wonderful neighborhood with a perfect climate. We pinch ourselves every day that we are so fortunate. As far as intensively planting fruit trees - depends on the type of tree. With stone fruits, you can get away with one-hole planting if you're a good pruner. Not so much with citrus. They need their own "space", even if it's tight. If you're considering intensive planting with citrus, I would strongly recommend truly dwarfing rootstocks ('Flying Dragon' if you can find it, or at the least, Cuban Shaddock, which is what Four Winds puts most of their trees on). Boy, it is really hard to limit my trees to just the 5 favorites. Here is the list of what I really, really love in my yard, not in any top to bottom order:

Seedless Kishu Mandarin
Ponkan Mandarin
California Honey Mandarin
Page Mandarin (nothing beats it for juice)
Moro Orange
Tarocco Orange
Wekiwa Tangelolo
Valentine Pommelo hybrid
Cocktail Pommelo hybrid
Melogold/Oroblanco grapefruit hybrid
Jan Boyce Avocado
Reed Avocado
Comice Pear
Seckel Pear
Any of my 3 different Fuji apples (Fuji, Red Fuji, Myra Fuji)
Spice Zee Necatplum
Artic Star Necatrine
Royal Lee Cherry
Any of my flat peento peaches (several varieties)
Ronde de Bordeaux fig
Panache fig

Just to name a few :-) I would strongly urge you to join your local CRFG Chapter. Find out who is your real fruit tree guru in your chapter. See if you can find someone in the chapter that has done what you want to do. It really, really helps to have someone to pattern after, and have as a sounding board. You should have a fairly active chapter up in SF. In fact, there are some rather famous citrus hobbyist growers up in N. California that you might want to make sure you visit, if your CRFG chapter has any tours set up. You will find membership extremely helpful in what you're trying to accomplish.

Patty S.

Here is a link that might be useful: California Rare Fruit Growers

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 6:18PM
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Jay Part Shade (Zone 10B, S21, Los Angeles)

Hey Patty,

I know this is an old thread, but I wanted to check in on your awesome avocado collection. Are you getting fruit now? If so, how do you like Jan Boyce, Sharwil, Nimlioh compared to the hass guys? I have a Sir Prize that's giving fruit for the first time and I really want to expand with some of the more unusual varieties. Thanks!

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 11:52AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Well, most are still growing, some have succumbed to our horrid freeze we had winter before last, some are recovering, and my Lamb Haas is absolutely loaded with fruit. If I just had this one tree, I don't think I could eat all the avocados, and we eat avocados about twice a day (for real). Jan Boyce recovered, Nimlioh almost died, but is recovering, Reed is struggling, Kona Sharwil succumbed and was replaced, and is struggling. I need to spend more time and get them going with more fertilizer and adjustments to water. As well as apply some AgriFos to reduce any issues with Phytophthora, which is an issue in my area for both citrus and avos.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 12:15PM
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Jay Part Shade (Zone 10B, S21, Los Angeles)

Hey Patty, thanks for the info. Yeah, I'm a twice-a-day avocado type too, I can't get enough. Sorry to hear your trees are suffering. I'm kinda surprised that in Vista, home of the avocado, you had freeze issues -- are you in a particularly cold basin or did everyone get hit?

And have you gotten any fruit from the Jan Boyce, Nimlioh and Sharwil? I'm curious how those compare taste wise.

Thanks!

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 4:00PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

I'm in the hills of Vista, about 6-7 miles from the coast at almost 1,000 ft of elevation. Not this winter, but last winter all of us in S. Calif. had about a week of some very frigid temps. Dropped to the 20's for me. Was very upsetting. Even though I covered some things, I still lost stuff. No fruits from Jan Boyce or Sharwil, but I have no doubt they will be the best in my yard. I will say, though, Lamb Haas is outstanding. And, it is much later than regular Haas, so extending the crop is one of my bigger considerations with regard to varieties I selected. That, and excellent taste.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 4:39PM
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Jay Part Shade (Zone 10B, S21, Los Angeles)

Lamb hass seems like an all around champ, though the temptation of super exotics may get the better of me.

Atkins has Daily 11 avocados in stock and I'm trying to find any info on it I can, other than it gets up to 5lbs. I really like the idea of having something as crazy as a Daily 11, even if the taste isn't tops, just to freak out friends and family.

I've also been reading about a number of great hawaiian varieties other than Sharwil, but it's unclear if they do really well here -- kahaluu, green gold and linda. I know people grow them, but it's damn near impossible to find out tasting notes or much of anything about these varieties.

Anyway, hope your collection bounces back!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 12:03PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Jay, actually, the best person around for avocado information would be Julie Frink, who is the exert on avocados here, she is the curator for the UC Riverside Avocado Collection. If you click on this link, there are 3 articles for download from Julie's presentation on avocados to our chapter last year. I would strongly recommend that you join your local CRFG Chapter, and see if they can bring Julie up to your neck of the woods for a presentation. She is fantastic, and can tell you all about every single variety they grow there. Plus additional ones.

Patty S.

Here is a link that might be useful: CFRG N. San Diego County Archives

    Bookmark   March 30, 2014 at 12:59PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

You have a slope like us, but yours seems much more friendly! Ours is seriously boulder, weedy, steep! Previous owners have cut out steps here and there, and we'll make our improvements also.

I loved the journey through your yard. We are in rescue mode also, plus planting, remodeling, and dealing with irrigation. Many unknowns are being rescued here.

Suzi

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 3:14PM
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Jay Part Shade (Zone 10B, S21, Los Angeles)

Hey Patty,

Wanted to follow up and say thanks for the great info. I pulled the trigger on a Sir Prize, Lamb Hass, Sharwil and Jan Boyce. Picked them up from Atkins right before the fire tornadoes (hope you didn't get hit).

I also picked up a free Hass and Mexicola which I'll probably use for grafting.

I repotted them right before the crazy heat wave. The Jan Boyce hated being uprooted and almost died completely. But the Lamb Hass, Mexicola and Sir Prize shrugged it off like nothing happened. Sharwil complained a little. The JB is bouncing back with all new growth. Can't wait to get fruit!

    Bookmark   June 6, 2014 at 10:52PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Good for you, Jay! We were right between two of the fires, so it was a little dicey for a few days. Just really horrifying. We have a long fire season ahead of us, sadly. We're picking fruit now from our Lamb Hass, tree is absolutely full of lovely avocados.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2014 at 10:58PM
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