lisa, what plum trees do you grow?

an_ill-mannered_acheJune 22, 2009

i have room for exactly two more small fruit trees. christine (happy_fl_gardener) grew some of the gulf series (i think that's what she grew) here in central florida and spoke highly of them. i see that they're available on just fruits. but on bay laurel there are some other low-chill plums that don't need pollinators. do you grown methley, beauty or mariposa? or maybe you have a counterproposal for my fruit choice? here's my current fruit census:

* Citrus: Honeybell Tangelo, Hamlin Orange, Owari Satsuma (these all on Flying Dragon), Sambokan Lemon, a Kumquat in a pot, and a kaffir lime in a pot

* Figs: 'Alma,' 'Brown Turkey,'Celeste.' (I planted these in the ground after a year in pots.)

* Brambles: Bababerry, unidentified blackberry, unidentified raspberry (from tony_k), and a 'Brazos' blackberry

* Blueberries: Climax, Primadonna, Gulf Coast x2, Marimba, Emerald

* Grapes: Nesbitt, Black Spanish

* Pomegranate (Grenada)

* Pommes: Anna Apple, Dorsett Golden Apple, Hood Pear, Pineapple Pear

* Various pineapples

* Mulberry (Black Beauty Mulberry Tree, unidentified weeping dwarf)

* Carambola ('Sri Kambangum')

* Bananas (four kinds, mostly dwarf, including Oronico & Ice Cream)

* Mango (Cogshall)

* Two peaches (Flordabell, FlordaPrince)

* Fuyu Persimmon

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gcmastiffs(z10 Florida)

Ache, Plum trees get rather large, much bigger than my Peach trees.

I have Gulf Beauty, Gulf Ruby, Guthrie, Methley and several others I lost the tags for.

None are good producers. I may get 10 plums a year from 7 trees?


    Bookmark   June 22, 2009 at 11:09AM
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hmmm... you're in a totally different zone than my 9a. interesting about the size, tho. i had thought plums were smaller than peaches. any suggestions, then, on what to plant in two smallish full-sun pockets?

    Bookmark   June 22, 2009 at 11:12AM
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Michael, peach and plum trees can be pruned to keep them smaller. Gulf Ruby and Gulf Beauty do grow very well around here. Production is very good. Lisa may be too far south for good fruit set. Ever consider an avocado?


    Bookmark   June 22, 2009 at 10:28PM
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dghays(Z10A FL Brevard)

I have had a Scarlet Beauty which has been very productive, I thinned it to about 50, and they were around the size of golf balls. Slightly tart skin, sweet flesh. Caribbean Fruit flies get them, just like peaches, but less so due to their tart skin. Beautiful color also. My tree doesn't seem to want to be bigger than any other stone fruit tree.


    Bookmark   June 23, 2009 at 6:54AM
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gcmastiffs(z10 Florida)

Plums fruit on older spurs and branches, so I think I used to prune off the fruiting bits.

Then I left them unpruned, and that didn't help. We had plenty of chill this winter, but not a single plum is on any of my 7 trees.

Maybe the drought? They are plenty old enough to fruit, and back when they were in half whiskey barrels, they did fruit decently. They get stout trunks and mine are currently about 12' tall.

I have much better results with Peaches, Nectarines and Apples.

The Pear trees are finally taking off this year. Maybe we will get Pears some day.


    Bookmark   June 23, 2009 at 7:30AM
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I bought a Scarlet Beauty plum at a rare fruit sale in zone 10, it looked to be about 2 years old. When we moved I left it behind because after owning it another year and a half (so 3.5 age total) it did nothing except leaf out.

Hmmmm, maybe that was why they sold it.


    Bookmark   June 23, 2009 at 8:48AM
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yeah, i have considered an avocado. would you suggest brogdon? i am trying to keep the number of trees i need to protect in winter to a minimum--right now, it's just the carambola (others are in large pots and so less of an issue). i planted a brogdon for my friend last summer and it was killed by the cold this year. i don't think he did a great job protecting it, but still... anyway, i'm still waffling, but inclined to give the plums a try. i used to grow a very prolific little chickasaw and it sure produced a lot of fruit... too bad they were unpalatable.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2009 at 9:01AM
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If growing only one avocado, the Brogdon Avocado would be a first choice because it is good tasting and self pollinating. Easy to grow. Mine is doing fine but I did protect it last winter.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2009 at 5:27PM
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dghays(Z10A FL Brevard)

My Brogdon did great without protection at 28F. It has about 3 dozen fruit right now, beautiful 13' tree, and they taste great.


    Bookmark   June 23, 2009 at 9:33PM
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gary & christine--does the avocado respond well to trimming? could i keep it an appropriate size? 13' is a quite small tree--about the size of my peach. i have an excellent, sunny spot... and i can buy one locally. hmmmm...

    Bookmark   June 24, 2009 at 9:28AM
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dghays(Z10A FL Brevard)

I'd love for mine to stay at 13', but it's about 5 years old and has been mildly topped 3 times. I plan to keep it around that height if possible. I can't say thru personal experience how well it'll take to continued efforts of control, but that's my plan.


    Bookmark   June 25, 2009 at 4:35AM
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Michael---The reason why an avocado would be good for your space is because the trees do like to grow vertically. You don't need to top it off. Just use fruit pickers on long poles to harvest the fruit. I have one that has a razor blade on it for harvesting such type fruits. They can be ordered online.


    Bookmark   June 25, 2009 at 8:07AM
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I grow gulf rose, the best plum I have ever eaten, and gulf blaze. sort of so so. I keep both to no more than 7 ft high to spray and bag.
both are sweet skin to pit, small pits and gulf rose is a deep rose red flesh also.
I keep my trees to 3-4 main scaffolds in a spiral. then spread out in a vase shape and no higher than I can reach. I make bags from the filmy nonwoven
sewer fabric at home depot. fold each 6x12" and staple sides. Then over the
fruit and a little of the branch and paper clipped. No bugs or disease. Also
it is too hot to spray sulfur here during ripening Howver next year I will try
1 cup molasses to 1 gal water with serenade. The molasses absorbs immediately
and has some sulfur. I did get a little brown rot however it was contained
by the bags and of course if fruit falls it does not spread disease. Good luck

    Bookmark   June 12, 2010 at 3:08PM
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I'm by no means an expert on the subject however, I have several different varieties of fruit trees in my back yard that I planted last year. One thing that is most important with pruning fruit trees is making sure you hollow out the center of the tree to allow for sufficient sunlight. So many people just plant fruit trees and sit back and wait for the harvest...........doesn't work that way! I also spray mine in the spring when they releaf from the chill season.........and yes, they must defoliate and have a chill season.......sometimes requiring you to help it along by various means. You can't spray them in south Florida once temperatures get above 75F according to instructions on the bottle.
I also dabble with roses and crape myrtle. I have beautiful full roses because my grandfather taught me up north to cut them right back to no more than 2' high in late fall. When they come back in the spring they are very hearty and full of blooms. I do this with my crape myrtle as well, hybiscus, and other nursery to get rid of all the life sucking obstacles whether suckers, or too much interior on the fruit trees, or whatever else is dogging the plant! I also fertilize all of my plants and use a few secret ingredients that helps them thrive!

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 11:23PM
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