Fruit tree suggestions

alan(Pensacola, fl)April 13, 2008


I live near Pensacola, but not originally from Florida. I keep having fire blight killing my fruit trees. My apples don't produce, pears try to, if they are not wiped out by blight. My nice Plum tree is dead. I end up cutting them back for fire blight so anything alive is short. I told my wife I will cut everything down and start over.

It seems the gulf coast area is strange area. Tropic plant freeze here and stuff from up north bairly survive here because its too hot. Wal-mart and Home Depot always say they only sell things that grow here!!!

My peach trees seem OK so far, the citrus near the house are fine. Pineapple guava is good, no fruit though. I believe Figs and Paw Paw will grow here.

So can anyone suggest what Fruit trees will actually grow well in our area?

Thanx Alan :)

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rockntroll(Navarre, FL 8B)


I live in Navarre and have been down the same road as you. I gave up on apples, peaches, plums...etc. I do have a pear tree that produces, but some years are good some bad. Here is a list of what I currently have that seem to thrive in our area;

Meyer lemon
Satsuma mandarin,

Other Fruits
Muscadine grape
Bananas (If placed in micro climate near house) "Ice Cream" Variety will produce fruit

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 8:30AM
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G'day y'all,
Thanks for those suggested species of fruit trees.
I'm helping a mate establish a permaculture property garden (ie edible landscaping) a few miles inland of Pass Christian on the MS Gulf Coast.
Are there any other fruit trees that you think may work there?
Permaculture Ozzie

    Bookmark   April 21, 2008 at 4:38PM
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This is a good source of information. Also there is a yearly south eastern citrus expo that showcases the cold-hardy hybrids.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2008 at 9:26PM
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Awesome Alex!
thanks heaps for that mate.
We can certainly grow a wide variety of citrus down there but SURELY their must be some other fruits too.
Blackberries? Avocado? Any apples or pears? Macadamia nuts?
Half the fun of plants is being able to feed ourselves from them isn't it?
Thanks y'all!
Green Footprints llc

    Bookmark   April 23, 2008 at 3:47PM
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swjonthebay(8b Alabama)

Alan, I am over in Mobile. I was looking at this article from MSU re: apples and pears and thinking of planting some of the varieties recommended there. What varieties did you plant? I would love to grow both but not if it's ultimately going to be a waste of time.

Here is a link that might be useful: Fruit and Nut Review: Apples and Pears

    Bookmark   April 26, 2008 at 8:02AM
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I've had great luck with Anna apple, an Israeli apple that's highly recommended for our area. I've had mine for about 15 years--it had 8 apples on it the first year I planted it. Some years, I've literally had bushels on one tree, some years with late freezes like this year, not more than 15-20. They have a tasty tart flavor. Available at Walther's Family Nursery in Chumuckla (just north of Pace, FL) for less than $10. The owner Norman Walther is a retired ag teacher and carries all types of fruits proven for our area. I bought lots of other fruits from him last year that I'll have to wait and see on.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 12:48AM
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Google 'just fruit and exotics' and check out their nursery inventory. I've had great results with a broad range of fruit trees from this Gulf Coast specialty nursery.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2008 at 2:15PM
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Pineapple Guava will fruit, just give them time. They need to be at least 4ft tall.

Loquats, figs should be OK as well as Pomegranates.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 4:37PM
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alan(Pensacola, fl)

I pre ordered from
a pair of Kiwi, Mulberry and a Paw Paw.

As for Apples I planted the famous Wal-mart apples, "No idea", that was 3 to 4 years ago.

I'm home on Vacation this month from Afghanistan trying to get the yard back under control after a year away so I have a mess to deal with. My nice plum died, looks like those wood boring worms killed it.
I have lots of mushrooms today! I wish Crepe Myrtles had fruit!
My guava has a lot of fruit again, I'm waiting to see if they all fall off in a week.
My pomegranate freezes every winter and never grows back very big. I need to move it up against the house.

well enough rambling...thanx everyone.. :)

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 7:15PM
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Send the kiwi back, they don't like our heat and humidity-I saw a pick your own kiwi place last weekend in San Francisco!
Try planting stuff like avocadoes, cherimoya, soursap, dragonfruit, jackfruit, lychee, mango, more tropical fruits, they will all do very well in your area. Figs are an excellent choice, bananas, star fruit.
Good luck! And welcome to the hot humid south. Big box stores are LIARS! I see stuff here all the time that will die within weeks or days.
Tally HO!

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 4:19PM
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Im not sure and hate to make a bad claim but I bought a apple tree from Just fruit...a Joys bloomed about march 01 looked to have fruit and all then all of a sudden a frost came through and the tree/twig looks barren and dead. I sent them an email ..they said wait it out...but I brought a pear tree from them thats getting big but no fruit yet...Im in JAX.
. o I bought a Dorsett apple tree from ..a nursury in Jenning Fla...4 apples and the tree is barely 4 ft!

Here is a link that might be useful: clay county

    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 12:41AM
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Pears and even the apples that are supposed to do well down here just don't do all that hot. We don't have enough chill hours.
Tally HO!

    Bookmark   May 28, 2008 at 9:23AM
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wannab(8b & 4a)

Add Lime tree to your Pensacola list. We have a Fla King Peach, a Meyers Lemon, Brown Turkey Fig, Satsuma and Valencie Orange. Pink and white grapefruit do well in our area. (we live across the bay from you in Lillian Alabama) Apples just require more chill time then we get. Loquat and Kumquat also do well here. When you hear a cold snap is coming our way, a few strings of those white mini Christmas lights strung in your trees will usuall be enough to protect them, plus they sort of look good in the garden.
As for the Box Stores, they will sell you anything. I have been burned by them many times until I learned what will and what will not grow in our area. Costly lesson I may add.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2008 at 4:41PM
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alan(Pensacola, fl)

I just planted a brown turkey fig!
One of my pear trees is loaded with pears. But its still suffering from fire blight.
My peach trees don't have many leaves this year and few fruit, not sure what happened there.
The apples have a few fruit but they seem small.

My Pineapple Guava finally held onto its fruit this year. We planted it 3 years ago and its maybe 4 feet tall now, just like don_licuala said!

Well enough for now, I have to leave this week, now its my wifes job. Thanks everybody.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2008 at 3:58PM
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Alan, try the link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: Fruits

    Bookmark   June 29, 2008 at 5:37AM
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Here is another place close to you.

Here is a link that might be useful: Pense Nursery

    Bookmark   June 29, 2008 at 5:41AM
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Things that grow well here in Ft Walton Beach:
Fuju Persimmon(have tried other kinds with poor results)
Kumquats and their Intergenerics
Meyer Lemons
Vaiegated Pink Lemon
Pineapple PEar
Passionfruits(edulis). Some yrs back to the roots.
These are just those I or my folks grow...

    Bookmark   July 4, 2008 at 4:44PM
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How about mulberry trees and persimmons (Fugayi sp.)? In my garden in Robertsdale, Al, I have tons of mulberry volunteers. I grow two types of figs, satsumas,kumquats pomegranites(have a hard time keeping fruit on trees)

    Bookmark   August 9, 2009 at 3:32PM
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rickinla(8B SW AL)

I'm in Mobile close south of I-10 and have very good luck with Meyers Lemon, Methley Plum, Rabbiteye blueberries, and Figs. The lemons produce so much that I have to give them away, the plum has good years and so-so years, the blueberries produce like crazy and the Walker Fig is a big producer.

If I were planting another fig, I would chose Celeste because they are also sweet but have a closed eye vs the open eye on the Walker. I planted a Burbank Plum and a Santa Rosa but both were flops.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2009 at 5:02PM
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Our natal plum flourishes on a spit between bay and salt water bayou. Big fig tree and orange that had produced were wiped out by Katrina Rita. We are between Galveston and Corpus. Lime survived. The others were flooded.
I'll replant on higher part of yard. Appreciate suggestions for our conditions

    Bookmark   May 31, 2013 at 4:12PM
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I live just to the north of Pensacola and I grow many types of pears and have had luck with one apple. First off buy you fruit trees from just fruits and exotics south of Tallahassee in Crawfordville. If is worth the trip for a newbe. The southern Bartlett is a good pear which you can get at jf&e and does not get fireblight. The Olton Broussard is another good pear which I can help you out with. The orient and pineapple pear are also good and available from many good nurseries. Local nurseries will advertise these pears but after 4 years you discover that they are all sandpears/kieffers which also is not a bad pear. The joy apple is doing ok for me and it is from JF&E.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2013 at 7:40PM
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I'm located just north of CRESTVIEW, FL and I grow olives, three kinds of kiwis, pineapple guava, fig, blueberries, blackberries, pomegranate, grape, peaches, plums, mulberry, jujube, nectarines, persimmons, pears, pecans, apples, sugar cane, a paw paw tree, tea and goji berries. Also have avocado trees about to go through their third winter hopefully and a banana tree that's been in since the spring. Definitely a lot of options in this area, you'll end up with some successes and some failures but keep trying.

    Bookmark   November 28, 2013 at 7:48PM
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bamacrazy(8b Mobile, AL)

Inspite using lights and covering it looks like the cold got my 7 year old ponderosa lemon and my lime tree. The Satsuma looks a little bad, but it ought to pull through.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2014 at 12:51PM
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I have had good luck with fruit trees from Stark Bro. Nursury.
Apples do not mix well with southern red cedar that carries blight.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2014 at 7:47PM
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alan(Pensacola, fl)

Its been about 6 years since I first posted this. Thanks for all the info, great stuff. I have been moving around working in Afghanistan and now Korea. I try to keep randomly planting things and looking at a major planting spree again when I get home.

So since this post...
My Guavas produces tons of fruit now.
I found a bunch of blueberries growing on the other side of my fence so I moved some to my garden.
I planed Bay leaves this year so far so good.
My tea bushes are doing good.
Raspberries died.
Pomegranates all died back in 07 I think, but replanted one last year and its doing very well, fruit this spring.
Kiwi's died.
Planted 2 persimmons, they are growing like weeds.
3 peach trees are all sickly, worms I think, I will replace them next year.
2 blackberries, just not growing well.
My citrus are all doing good.
The pear tress are doing well, one produces too many and needs to be propped up! But they are hard and gritty and we just throw them away.

From your lists above I'm thinking Mulberries, Pawpaws, and maybe a lemon if I can find a sheltered place.

Thanks again...

    Bookmark   May 19, 2014 at 5:08AM
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