Buying a new tree!! Advise please

gro-nut(6a se MI)December 20, 2012

Happy Holidays everyone!! It's that time of year for another citrus tree!! I talked too Kerry at Four Winds about my new purchase and to my dismay she said not to buy a Mandarin because of my zone 6b she said growing them indoors in the winter would not work! What are your thoughts on this? My trees sit in front of a 9 by 20 south window and are planted in 511. I have already have a Meyer,Grapefruit,Moro blood,Nules Clemm,and a lime. I'm looking for a easy to grow sweet orange. Navel?? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

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andyandy(6bMI)

Gro-nut
I'm in Farmington Hills. Im a regular on the Palm forum. I have about 10 potted palms that I move indoors in the Fall and outdoors in the spring (including a coconut palm). Do you mind if I ask you where you have gotten some of these citrus trees? I just put a post on about germinating some seeds and am interested in growing some indoor/outdoor citrus trees.

thanx,
Andy

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 3:40PM
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gro-nut(6a se MI)

Hey Andy welcome to a uncontrollable addiction LOL!!! I live in north Macomb Twp! I got most of my trees from Larry's Orchids in New Baltimore great store,great people. He sells one year old grafts about 15 different kind they are great to start with,you can watch them grow pinch and prune to create a great little tree. If your feeling a little more adventurous then Four Winds in California,much bigger trees. Good luck on your purchase let us know what you get.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 6:09PM
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meyermike_1micha(5)

Hey welcome!

Have you tried the Washington Navel yet?

The fruit is sweet, east to grow, gives tons of blossom and fruit, and if I remember, seedless. One of my favorites.

Mike:-0)

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 6:28PM
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gro-nut(6a se MI)

Hey Mike!! From what I have read I think it's going to be a Navel!! Did you get yours from Four Winds? How did it look? The last tree I got from them the root mass was huge! Do you root prune before you pot? Or just try to fit them in the pot? Mike

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 6:44PM
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gro-nut(6a se MI)

Hey Mike!! From what I have read I think it's going to be a Navel!! Did you get yours from Four Winds? How did it look? The last tree I got from them the root mass was huge! Do you root prune before you pot? Or just try to fit them in the pot? Mike

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 6:50PM
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gro-nut(6a se MI)

Oops!! Sorry about the double post :)

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 6:52PM
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meyermike_1micha(5)

Hey....I got mine from a local nursery.

They are usually the easiest to find locally for me but I do know that Four Winds sells some nice one too!

I don't trim the roots since I like to grow them big. I have two that are in 5 gallon and 3 gallon pots that are doing great! If you would like a pic, just let me know:-)

Mike

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 10:05PM
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johnmerr(11)

If your decision is navel, I would advise Cara Cara; it is the best IMHO, and not hard to grow.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 11:30PM
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meyermike_1micha(5)

Why a Cara Cara John?

Is it sweeter and as prolific in the blooming end?

If so, I will get one myself.

Mike

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 7:42AM
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gro-nut(6a se MI)

Thanks John and Mike! I was looking at Four Winds trees...what about the Travola? My Moro is going into full bloom I'll post some pics soon!!!

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 8:10AM
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mksmth zone 6b Tulsa Oklahoma(6b)

Why would they tell you not to grow mandarin's indoors and not say the same for all the other citrus. They all require generally the same care. If you want a mandarin buy one. I have an Armstrong Satsuma mandarin in my greenhouse that does just fine here in 7A.

mike

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 9:05AM
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andyandy(6bMI)

Gro-Nut

Thank you for the info, I'll check it those places out

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 9:13AM
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gro-nut(6a se MI)

I know Mike that's what i said!! She told me Manderins were too fussy for indoor growing in Michigan.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 9:42AM
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gro-nut(6a se MI)

No problem Andy. Just keep in mind if you start with one you'll end up with 10!!! LOL! I started out with an Olive tree 5 years ago now I have 3 Olives and 11 Citrus!!

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 9:51AM
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johnmerr(11)

Mike,

IMO the Cara Cara (a sport of the Washington navel) is tastier, juicier, etc. It is my favorite orange for eating out of hand; but of course not the best for juice... that would be one of the new Valencia cultivars.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 10:54AM
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meyermike_1micha(5)

Thank you John:-)

I think I'll get one.

Hello MIke:-)))

Gronut,

I would trust Kerry on her advice unless you are very good at growing citrus indoors way up there in your home and you have a premium mix to do so. Their trees are far too expensive a grown in optimal conditions.

Mike does a wonderful job at growing all citrus and so do I, but that came with time and experience. Washington and probably any other orange tree have always been the easiest for me, even before I knew nothing about growing plants.

Mike

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 1:50PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

I agree with John, I love the Cara Cara. It is a little sweeter than the Washington Navel, plus you get the benefit of the lovely pink flesh. Great cultivar. The Washington Navel is excellent, just like the extra sweetness of the Cara Cara. Some folks might not, for those that like their citrus a bit more sprightly, but I just love it.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 1:53PM
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cayden(9)

+1000 for cara cara, John's right ... it's the best orange I've ever had!

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 2:51PM
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gro-nut(6a se MI)

Thanks everyone!! I just put my order in at Four Winds! I'll post pictures of my new Cara Cara when it gets here. Happy Holidays! Mike

    Bookmark   December 21, 2012 at 4:26PM
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MrClint

My Lane Late (another WN bud sport) is a bit sweeter than my Washington Navel. This is mostly because it doesn't bare or hold nearly as many oranges. WN is a very heavy bearer. With almost all fruit trees - the fewer fruit that the plant has to ripen the sweeter and larger the remaining fruit will be. I cannot speak to Cara Cara's bearing, but there has to be a reason that it isn't dominating the citrus industry the way that WN has/does.

That said, all things being equal WN and its bud sports are just that - equal. The primary difference for Cara Cara is the color. The primary differences for Lane Late is that it's a bit later, but does not bear nearly as much as WN (as previously stated).

    Bookmark   December 22, 2012 at 12:56PM
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johnmerr(11)

The Cara Cara has not dominated the orange market mostly because it is a late comer to the citrus industry, not arriving in the US until the 80's. If you are an established citrus grower producing Washington navel oranges, it is pretty hard to pull out a mature producing tree to replace it with something that MAY be better; however there are quite a few new plantings of CC in California; as there are of the Meyer lemon. It takes a while to educate the consumer to something better; but when it happens they will demand the better. Just as virtually no one in the world is planting red delicious apples, it could happen with the Cara Cara... not saying it Will, but time will tell.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2012 at 2:23PM
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MrClint

You may be overlooking some of the data. Cara Cara is considered to be a chimera, which means that it may revert to bearing non-pink fruit, and could sprout variegated foliage and whatever else. Some production trials indicate that Cara Cara does not produce as much WN. To the backyard grower these things might not matter much, but it may be problematic for commercial growers.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2012 at 3:33PM
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cayden(9)

My taste buds may be defective; and I certainly don't want to start a flame war about which citrus is best. However, I do not feel that Cara Cara and Washington Navel are equal--this has been stated in several places but personally they taste quite different to me. That's also been the experience of most of the people I know who have actually tried them. In fact, every Cara Cara I have had has always been superior to any Washington Navel I have had. It's not just sweeter. The flavor is richer and more complex.

There's more to Cara Cara than just color change. Like John said Cara Cara is a relative new comer to the US market. Of those that have tried it; it's well loved. Please don't try to imply that Cara Cara is some how inferior because it's not the dominate commercial variety. There are many factors that may or may not make a variety successful commercially. Maybe the Cara Cara will take off commercially; maybe not, but for the backyard grower I would never leave it out of my garden.

Just my personal opinion. Every body has different taste buds!

    Bookmark   December 22, 2012 at 5:40PM
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MrClint

Absolutely, I don't want to talk anybody out of anything. I'm just making a case for WN, knowing full well that Cara Cara has captured people's imaginations. You cannot go wrong with WN. I did a number of taste tests before I settled on WN for my own orchard, and didn't find Cara Cara to be better than a dead ripe WN. The Cara Cara color is mesmerizing, as I'm reading of people proclaiming strawberry, and raspberry undertones. It's an excellent orange, and that should be enough, really. If you put a blindfold on you probably won't notice much of a difference between the two. Ultimately, I went with the orange of my youth, WN.

Florida, although not prime navel country, was ahead of the curve on Cara Cara, and found it to be somewhat lacking long term.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2012 at 6:12PM
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meyermike_1micha(5)

Well, I'll be!

I have been growing a Cara Cara this whole time, since last spring to be precise, and I had no idea..lol Yup!
All this time I thought it was another one my many WN's...

Now, from experience living up here in the North East, what can I tell you?

1. I have yet to try a fruit on it.

2. I have yet to see it fruit.

3. It does not flower as frequently as my WN's and if you are one who is allergic to most citrus, then you will be disappointed.

4. It is starting to bud up for it's first time since I have had it, where as my WN's are always in bud periodically throughout the whole year.

5. If I get any fruit, I can't wait to taste it, even though I shouldn't. I shall have to have my friends be the experts on eating them:-) I am not sure if it seedless but the WN is.

6. Other than that, I have no idea about this Cara Cara except from what I am learning here. Is it seedless? Juicy, easy to peel like the WN?

7. I can tell you it's not a fussy plant to grow and no where as difficult asa, let's say, Manderine.
The leaves look a lot like the WN which is why I thought it was one. But I questioned why this supposed one navel orange tree was not flowering all year, flowering being my priority, and in fact has not flowered for me since I have had it, and once I took a closer look at the tag, oops, it's a Cara Cara.
I can't wait to see what surprise this one holds out for me and now I don't have to buy one. Yahoo!

Have a Merry one everyone no matter what you believe and do and know I am thinking of you all.

John and Patty, does it feel like Christmas there other than the long huge crowds, feeling rushed, and being broke.Ha

Mike

    Bookmark   December 23, 2012 at 12:42PM
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johnmerr(11)

We know it's Christmas time in Guatemala when the Poinsettias are in bloom. This one grows wild in the neighbor's garden; it is more than 20 feet tall.

Mike, congrats on your Cara Cara discovery... kinda like a Christmas present to yourself. As for the blind tasting, the first time I tasted a CC, I didn't even know what it was; but I knew immediately I had to have it. Sunkist is promoting it now; so it will surely be a premium price.

John

    Bookmark   December 23, 2012 at 12:51PM
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