Kumquat tree bearing fruit after 15 years!

Swampman01August 28, 2011

I guess all it took was looking at the tree and thinking "I need to dig that up". This tree was purchased 15 years ago with a kumquat on it and sat in a pot on the porch for 3 years until we moved to a new house. I planted it in the yard and it did nothing for years. Then 4-5 years ago it began to sprout new growth out the top. It is now about 12ft tall. Just went out there and noticed dozens of fruit growing only at the top. I am assuming it is a "Marumi" kumquat because the fruit is roundish, not real sure though. I think it is more pear shaped and some fruits are close to 2 inches across. Is this common, or do I just have a really weird tree?

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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Well, sounds more like a situation where the tree wasn't getting what it needed to bloom, perhaps not enough sunlight, not enough water or enough regular waterings, not enough fertilizer. Once it the ground it had time to get itself squared away, and now it's getting what it needs, and producing for you. After you pick all the fruit, you can shape prune it to bring the height down if you want. Also, if you do some tip pruning lower down (be sure not to to cut off any flower buds - prune before you see flowers), you can force new growth down lower, hence more buds and then fruit that won't require you to use a ladder to pick.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2011 at 10:24AM
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Thanks Patty...sounds reasonable to me. I think I will prune this tree down to size this year and put some fertilizer spikes around it. I live in South Carolina, the fruit is still green and it is around mid to late October now. I have seen a couple fruits start to turn orange only to just fall off the tree. I have never seen such big kumquats. When we got it the one fruit was a normal oblong shape. Now they look like a medium size pear. Is this normal, or has this thing mutated in some way.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2011 at 10:45AM
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The only type of kumquat that is 2" across is Fortunella obovato, the Fukushu Kumquat. It is a bit of a specialist variety and not often sold.
Much more likely is that you have allowed the rootstock to grow and overwhelm the Kumquat variety. This happens very easily if you allow growth from below the graft line.
Is the skin of the ripe fruit fairly sweet? It should be for a kumquat.
Are the leaves single, or do they have two extra side leaves? This is a sign of the rootstock being Poncirus trifoliata or a hybrid of it.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2011 at 2:01PM
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