Mandarins and growing conditions

treeguy123(AL 7b)November 2, 2012

I saw this posted by someone on the tropical fruit forum:

"This has been discussed before...Gold Nuggets will not grow/fruit well in Florida, and this may be an understatement."

Does anyone know why that person said this?

What makes a Gold Nugget Mandarin any different than say a Owari Satsuma in where it will produce fruit?

Any help would be appreciated.

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

treeguy123, can you provide the link to that message?

Patty S.

    Bookmark   November 3, 2012 at 12:38AM
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treeguy123(AL 7b)

Here it is (about midway down the page):

    Bookmark   November 3, 2012 at 1:37AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

Well, I think maybe it depends on where you are in Florida. And I have have no idea why a Gold Nugget mandarin wouldn't do well in Florida, unless it is due to the fact that it is not an early mandarin, like the satsuma mandarins, but a rather late mandarin - February to June. I'm not a Florida resident, so I can't particularly comment on this, but I suspect there also may be an issue with lack of Gold Nugget mandarins in the state to start with, as the budwood is patented, and either not easily accessible in Florida or not accessible at all. The best place to pose this question would be over at the Citrus Grower's Forum. I know there are many Florida members there, and several east coast folks, several of which are very successfully growing and enjoying Gold Nugget. It is one of my very, very best mandarins, excellent first season for me.

Patty S.

Here is a link that might be useful: Citrus Grower's Forum

    Bookmark   November 3, 2012 at 7:19PM
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Begs the question... Does anyone know of a Florida vendor that sells Gold Nugget mandarins?

    Bookmark   November 3, 2012 at 10:51PM
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treeguy123(AL 7b)

Thanks. I'm new to citrus, does early mandarin mean the fruit ripens before the brunt of freezes? And late means it takes all fall and winter to ripen and will be ripe in February to June (ripe the next year after flowering)? Maybe that's what they meant on that tropical fruit forum, the fruit can easily freeze and fall off before ripening in the SE?

Here in the SE, November to March are the freezing months. It also rains in fairly high amounts all year and is humid in the summer. Those are the main things climate wise that make it different than parts of CA where Gold Nugget is widely grown.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 1:08AM
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I think it is more of a generic statement about the varietys in that category since it is not based on the zone you live in.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 6:37AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

Early means the mandarin is ripening as early as September (extremely early) through November. Mid-season would be November to about late December, and late would be late December on, more or less. Most satsumas fall into that early category, and why you see them grown in more marginal citrus areas. That, and they are more cold tolerant than many other citrus varieties. So, a late mandarin, like Gold Nugget, which was developed in California, may not be suitable for your area, as the fruit ripens so very late. And, the flowering may also be delayed with later varieties. I'll have to watch my Gold Nuggets to see when they flower. You are most definitely on the edge of the citrus zone, so I would think you would be looking for all your fruit to be ripe by November.

You'll find the late season citrus almost exclusively developed in California, since we have such a mild climate, and can grow citrus very successfully all year 'round. That is one of the reasons I selected some of my mandarin varieties - to give me ripe mandarins almost 12 months out of the year. It is also great for commercial growers, as they can extend their mandarin selling season if they plant successive cultivars. So us hobbiests also benefit from all those varieties that ripen year 'round :-)

Patty S.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 3:45PM
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treeguy123(AL 7b)

Thanks very much.
I guess the only way to grow Gold Nugget fruit here would be to grow it in a pot and bring it inside during the winter, or set up a mini greenhouse over it each winter and then heat the inside when it gets below 28F or so.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 5:55PM
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