Ponkan and Clemenule Mandarin - Where to buy in So. Cal

johninatorFebruary 12, 2014

After reading all the positive posts regarding the Ponkan and Nules (Clemenules) Mandarin, I would like to purchase grafted trees for my backyard. Preferable in a 5gal semidwarf or low cut grafts since they will be in pots for a while.

Can anyone direct me where to buy them in Southern California? I live in the Los Angeles and Orange County area. Thanks, your feedback are much appreciated.

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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

I know Walter Andersen Nursery carries both, but they are down in San Diego county (Poway). You could try some of the better nurseries up in Los Angeles county, though, and ask them if they either have these cultivars or can order them for you. Sperlings, Armstrong Garden Centers, Burkhard Nursery, Nuccio's, amongst a few.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2014 at 8:25PM
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Thanks Patty, I may have to take a day trip to san diego if i cant find it in LA or OC.

I called a couple of armstrong gardens and dropped by the pasedana branch but they did not carry it. I did grab a page mandarin from them this weekend. They were very helpful and organized there. Great customer service!

Ill try the other nurseries you recommended to see if they have it.


    Bookmark   February 13, 2014 at 12:25AM
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gregbradley(Upland, CA USDA 9b Sunset 19)

Armstrong gets citrus from Durling Nursery and LaVerne Nursery. They don't seem to get any from anywhere else although they used to buy from others. Armstrong gets $35 for #5 and $120 for #15. I've used them several times when I wanted to order something that was available from either of those growers.

The local Home Depots all seem to get most of their citrus from LaVerne Nursery although they put their own label on them. They get $23 for #5 and $79 for #15. I have occasionally seen some unusual citrus in a store and you can't complain about the price. Don't expect them to know anything about their stock and I don't mean just citrus, or even plants for that matter.

I've made the trip to Walter Anderson in Poway 3 times, the first on Patty's recommendation. It is a very interesting nursery in an area that makes Pasadena seem inexpensive! They get some of their citrus from small growers like Monterey Bay Nursery that have unusual citrus. I got my 88-2 Mandarin, Valentine Pumello, Smith Red, and Kiyomi Tangor there. They get $40 for a #5 but $99 for #15. I've seen Ponkan there but I'm personally confused about the Clemenule Mandarin cultivar. I think there are a couple different names for that variety.

Evergreen Nursery, who has a branch in Oceanside, has lots of citrus. That is where Patty said she got her Michal. That is where I just found a 24" box Cocktail standard after I realized my Dwarf #15 would be wiped clean on the first day it was ripe for the next few years. They also had a Yosemite Gold Mandarin that I had not seen elsewhere. They had about 8 24" box Tarocco Blood Oranges a few weeks ago, which is kind of shocking. Only place I've seen 30" & 36" box citrus in stock.

    Bookmark   February 13, 2014 at 3:56PM
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Greg, regarding the Clemenules, they also go by names under De Nules Clementine, or Nules, Clementina... They are widely grown in spain, and i heard that it is part of the cuties brand on certain seasons. They are known to be a mutation of the fina clementine. I called evergreen and they said that they grow them, but they dont have a 5gal ($24.50) available right now. The lady on the carmel location was very helpful and told me to check back. But the guy who answered the phone in the oceanside branch didnt have a clue on the clemenule variety.

I will try the walter andersen (poway) for the ponkan. Im glad you were able to find the 88-2 and valentine pomelo, I read the uc davis report regarding the tried and true vs something new in citrus and got me all excited to try them out. Let me know how those two variety comes along for you and how it ranks with the rest of the varieties.

Regards, John

    Bookmark   February 19, 2014 at 5:28PM
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Attached is the University of CA report regarding popuplar and new citrus varieties. It was published by UC Riverside but the web link had UC Davis hosting the pdf file. Its great reading and will get citrus collectors/growers itching for more...

The last page is a great chart for seasonal availability if you want to spread citrus harvest all year long.

Here is a link that might be useful: Tried and new citrus varieties

    Bookmark   February 19, 2014 at 5:40PM
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It's been a couple months sinced OP, but in case you are still looking and for others info from my experience, here it is:

I have purchased many new varieties of mandarins and would strongly discourage anyone from getting the Ponkan in So or Central CA climate ...exception possibly being the coastals with high humidity.

My Ponkans are displaying the exact fruiting behavior described by UCD testing facility: raggy inedible fruit. Id suggest you take a look at their testing results database for Ponkans. It is not a producer in desert climates for sure.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2014 at 4:33AM
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Totally agree, cebury. Not sure why any one would push this as a variety to grow anywhere in CA to be honest.
It's a tropical mandarin. In UCR's own words: "flavor only fair", which is being overly generous.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2014 at 7:00AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

Interesting, cebury. My Ponkans do fine for me, but then, I'm pretty close to the coast, so that must explain it. And, they taste great.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2014 at 9:59AM
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bounty: yeah maybe I was a little harsh saying they were inedible, but yes that was their quote from the citrus variety collection db I referred to.

It also includes a large reference from the citrus "bible":
"Climatically, the ponkan is one of the most tropical mandarins. Under tropical conditions the fruit attains maximum size and quality and finds little competition from other mandarins. In the hot arid subtropics, however, it has generally proven disappointing and other varieties are better adapted and more popular."

Certainly where I live it is arid desert (esp. this year 4 in. rain) as our entire citrus industry is in desperation b/c of drought and water rights. But so far city water costs for small backyard orchardists like myself are very reasonable and doesn't affect me, but doubt I could afford the rates that Patty pays down south for water.

Patty: have you noticed any excess Ponkan pith/rag compared to your other mandarins?

    Bookmark   May 5, 2014 at 7:05PM
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