Storing Satsumas

HGFzone8November 5, 2012

What is the best way to save satsumas? On the tree, cooler or room temperature. They are ripe now and I would like to hold them till Thanksgiving.

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johnmerr(11)

Don't pull them off the tree; cut them with a shears, leaving a little piece of stem. I would wax them with carnauba fruit wax; and then refrigerate in the bottom of your refri. If you don't have access to the wax, probably better to store them in a cool place but not in the refri; as the low humidity there will dry/deteriorate the fruit.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 6:08PM
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HGFzone8

Thanks John. I had hoped to leave them on the tree but cutting them off and storing them a cool place should be no trouble.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 10:03PM
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houstontexas123(z9a)

you can leave them on the tree, until you get freezing temps. but they'll also last a few weeks in the fridge. my aunt and uncle have a couple of mandarin trees. they produce buckets full of fruit every year. we've had them in the fridge for up to a month.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 1:20AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

HGF, some satsumas don't store well on the tree, they can become puffy and dried out. Others will do better just hanging on the tree for a month or two, until you start getting freezing temps like houston said. What variety of satsuma do you have? You must have a fairly early variety. They will store well in the fridge, just keep them in a box so they don't get bruised or banged up.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 9:48AM
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HGFzone8

Brown select is what I have Patty. I think what I will do is run a test. Leave some on the tree, some in the cooler, and some at room temperature.

I have noticed some have a loose peel look so we will use them first. Everybody around here have lots of satsumas this year.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2012 at 6:58AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

Good idea, HGF. This will give you exactly the info you need. Even trees within a cultivar can vary. Brown's Select is a mid-early variety, mid-October to early November. I think it is probably the best of the early satsumas. So, let us know how the fruit does on the tree, I would be very interested to know. This variety surprisingly, is not available in California, but I have seeds I'm trying to germinate right now, so I'm hopeful to have some ready for grafting next spring. If anyone out there knows if this variety is compatible with either C35 or C32, that would help me with a rootstock selection. Troyer and Carizzo are out. Swingle is a possiblity for me as well.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2012 at 11:12AM
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HGFzone8

Patty, the only problem with the Brown Select is it spreads out and is kind of droopy looking. The taste though is tasty sweet and you have to love how easy they peel.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 7:32AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

Well, that's a typical canopy and growth habit of a Satsuma, HGF :-) I happen to think that is very pretty and architectural. They can become very beautiful garden specimens, plus produce delicious fruit. There are some more upright Satsumas (Xie Shan & Silverhill for example). Satsumas in general are slow-growing, small to medium-small trees, usually spreading and drooping, nearly thornless with open foliage. The leaves tend to be more lanceolate in shape, again, giving them a lovely, delicate appearance. Another satsuma you might want to consider for your climate is St. Ann. It is the earliest of all the satsumas, ripening in September to mid-October. But, Brown's Select is known to be the best tasting of the earlier satsumas. Possibly surpassing Owari.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 11:49AM
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johnmerr(11)

Patty,
Why not try macrophylla; I am in love with that rootstock; it produces fruit early on and is relatively resistant to a lot of conditions. The only citrus I have found that is hard to produce on macrophylla is kaffir lime; it is best grown from seed; but I do have a cupla new kaffirs on macrophylla... it will be interesting to see how they do.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 5:45PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

Too big for me, John. I would have to do all my own grafting, too, as no one here uses Macrophylla for dooryard citrus. This is trifolate country :-) Macrophylla is a rootstock traditionally used in very warm (tropical) climates, but is not known for producing the best tasting fruit. Not such an issue for sour citrus, but certainly not the rootstock of choice for sweet citrus. And, not cold tolerant at all. Not a huge issue for me, but we can get some freezing temps here in the hills, so for size, fruit quality/taste and cold tolerance, the trifoliates are the best choices. I just have to make sure to select those trifoliate or citrange varieties that have the very best tolerance to Phytophthora. Although Macrophylla is quite good in its tolerance to Phytophthora, it has other qualities that are not ideal for my area and my yard.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2012 at 8:22PM
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