Satsuma and Mandarine

heidiho(St. Martinville, La. Zn.8)October 9, 2007

What is the difference between satsuma and mandarine?

Also when can I plant them? We just moved and would like to plant a couple of them in the yard. Will they take our winter's well or do I need to cover them?

Thanks for your time and have a nice evening.

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Well I guess I am trying to answer your questions since I gardened in south LA so many years. Lived there my first 48 yrs, now I'm in north mississippi.
I really don't know exactly the difference, but I think mandarine is more like a small orange. Satsuma is easier to peel and comes apart in distinct sections. If I am recalling, satsuma is the most cold hardy. Citrus, though, are more cold sensitive. Many people grow them in large pots so they can bring them in for a cold snap. Many people string Christmas lights on them and keep that running in a cold snap. Once they get larger it is hard to cover them but you can mulch the roots very well in winter. Since you can't predict how cold it will get, what if it gets in the 20s???, then I would wait to plant in ground in spring. March 17 was always our day to be pretty sure of no frost. That would give them all year to get roots etc and prepare for the next winter. Usually fall and winter (nov to jan there) are the best time to plant trees and shrubs, but citrus I believe would be the exception. Enjoy your year round gardening!

    Bookmark   October 9, 2007 at 10:21PM
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The Satsuma is a seedless Mandarin with loose skin and often called zipper skin. Mandarin is the family or group of oranges.
I donÂt worry too much until the temps drop below 26 degrees. At this time it is best to use frost blankets and lights to add a little heat. The Satsuma can survive down to 20 degrees.
I would recommend the Owari and if you want an early Satsuma the StAnn is also good but not as sweet as the Owari which ripens about mid November. The Armstrong is a popular early Satsuma but it is poor quality.
Fall planting gives the tree a chance to establish some root structure before the spring flush,but the down side is protecting the trees through the winter.
Good luck.

    Bookmark   October 9, 2007 at 11:04PM
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timintexas(z8 E.Tx.)

I am growing many Satsumas and Mardarins up here right next to Shreveport..I do not protect and they are producing very, very well. I doubt you should have any real cold issues down there. They are amazingly cold tolerant. We dip into the teens all winter up here, somtimes even single digits for a few hours at night. Plant away! I too love Owari...I even have the varigated form of Owari, though the fruit is not as good.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2007 at 10:40PM
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I have a 6 year old satsuma that has been bearing large quanities of fruit for the last 2 years but the quality is horrible! Meaty, little juice almost like something is drinking the juice? I am not sure of the variety but the fruit is fairly large with thick skin that ripens in Dec.
I live south of Houston and tree is in ground with a meyer lemon tree maybe 30 ft away that is producing great numbers and quality. I usually feed spikes spring and fall but have now changed to slow release every couple of months to see if helps. any suggestions? the tree has set fruit for a new crop but still about 1/2 inch in size.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2011 at 10:43AM
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love_the_yard(z9A Jax FL)

My satsumas are absolutely delicious - like candy. I would highly recommend this variety to anyone. It is the only citrus I know that you can eat in the car. Can remove the peel in about three hunks. Furthermore, it only has seeds in two or three sections/segments per fruit. They are absolutely fantastic. It produces like crazy. I use citrus-specific fertilizer and apply every two months during the growing season (Mar - May - July - Sep). My neighbors are pleasant the first time receiving them - then a few days later ask me, "What WAS that! Those were GREAT! What are they called?!"

Satsuma is a very healthy, cold-tolerant and highly productive citrus tree. Can't say enough good things about it. My parents' tree is around 30 years old and puts out 500-700 per year. Amazing.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2011 at 11:52PM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

Lovetheyard, you fertilize 4 times a year? Maybe because you're further south?

I planted a satsuma last year. Fertilized it in February this year and planning another application this month. I checked my LSU Ag Center home citrus booklet and it says additional nitrogen should only be applied in the summer to trees 4 years and older. It also states that fertilizer applied after the end of June will decrease cold hardiness and delay fruit from ripening.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2011 at 1:04PM
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love_the_yard(z9A Jax FL)

Both mine and my parents' trees fruit are ready to pick and eat at Thanksgiving. Not just a few - the whole tree. Same every year - satsuma is the first citrus ripened and ready. Satsuma is an early citrus. So no, never had the citrus delayed. In fact, the fruit is ready before our first (infrequent) hard freeze which usually arrives in December or January. 2010 was an exception when it came on Sunday night of Thanksgiving weekend. So cold/freezing not an issue for the fruit.

As far as cold-hardiness, when a hard freeze is forecast, I sometimes put heat lamps on them and sometimes not. In 10+ years for my tree and 30+ years for parents' tree, never had any part of either of the trees freeze back.

I don't overdo the fertilizer. That is why I use a citrus-specific fertilizer (with the minor elements) and apply more often. Many of us believe that more frequent, light applications are better than two or three heavy applications. (I actually use that same theory with all my plants. I apply at one-half or even one-third the rate but twice as often. This works if you like to garden or work in the yard and are out there frequently.)

My tree is shaped somewhat like a Charlie Brown tree. Here is my satsuma tree in November 2007:

Two years later, my satsuma tree on November 23, 2009. (It has grown substantially in the past year and a half but I don't have a current photo):

Another photo from November 2009:

My parents' tree. This photo does not do it justice because you just can't see the enormity. The photo doesn't show the perspective and how tall and wide the tree is (20' diameter):

    Bookmark   May 1, 2011 at 5:09PM
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love_the_yard(z9A Jax FL)

Just took a few new photos of my tree:

    Bookmark   May 1, 2011 at 5:23PM
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love_the_yard(z9A Jax FL)

P.S. Spikes are a poor way to fertilize almost any tree. What is the likelihood that you will slide a spike in the ground right next to a root? Broadcast granular fertilizer is a much better way to go - especially with citrus. With citrus, you never mulch or underplant. So there should be nothing but ground beneath the tree. Broadcasting granular fertilizer is easily done.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2011 at 6:42PM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

Your tree is much older than mine. I did use a citrus fertilizer in February on the satsuma and Meyer lemon. Plan to use time-release Miracle Grow this month. I'll give my trees another year or two before attempting additional fertilization, but thanks for the info.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2011 at 8:42PM
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