Red Sugar Apple and Atemoya

gcmastiffs(z10 Florida)August 3, 2005

Got a nice new tree last week with fruit on it, and it is doing well. It is my first fruiting SA.

I have a dumb question about how the fruit grow. There is a tiny purplish fruit on the tree, with a stout stem, but the fruit feels very hard, almost like dead wood. Is this normal or is it dead? My Atemoya has both young and large fruit and the small green fruit are roundish with no bumps. The tiny Sugar apple fruit is ridged/segmented. I'm only wondering if it is viable because it is so hard.

Here is a photo of the larger Red Sugar apple fruit.

Here are some Atemoya fruit, including a baby one.

I'll get a picture of the tiny SA fruit as soon as the rain stops.


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gcmastiffs(z10 Florida)

Here is the SA fruit in question.


    Bookmark   August 3, 2005 at 12:09PM
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northtexasgirl(z8 FTW)

Hi Lisa. Would you mind telling me where you bought this tree? Have you bought from them before? I'm trying to decide which kind of tropical fruit tree I want to order for my birthday and from whom. Yours look great. Thanks for you help. :)


    Bookmark   August 3, 2005 at 2:48PM
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gcmastiffs(z10 Florida)

Leona, I'm lucky to not live too far from Excalibur Rare Fruit Tree nursery in Lake Worth, Florida. They do not do mail order. They have container trees in pots big enough to swim laps in(G), as well as more normal sizes.

An excellent mail order source is Pine Island Nursery in Miami. I have purchased many trees from them over the years and have always been pleased. They have a fascinating website.


    Bookmark   August 3, 2005 at 4:30PM
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I'm certainly no expert here so don't put too much stock in what I say but I think the smaller sugar apple fruit has mummified. I think this is sometimes a problem in sugar apples. I have seen fruit on the trees at the Fruit and Spice Park in Homestead that displayed this behavior. I have also seen it on the fruit on my sugar apple and they never mature. They just turn black and hard. I don't know if you can control it with spraying (or what causes it). I never really investigated it too much since it only seems to affect a few fruit each year on my tree and it always sets too many fruit to carry to maturity.

I went to Excalibur Rare Fruit Tree Nursery time before last when I was in south Florida (mid-June) and it is a great place. I like your description of the size of some of their pots. I have never seen pots that large. I also order and buy a lot of stuff from Pine Island and they are also excellent.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2005 at 12:35AM
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gcmastiffs(z10 Florida)

GAtrops, your explaination makes perfect sense! Thank you!


    Bookmark   August 4, 2005 at 1:56PM
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Eggo(z10soCal LBC)

Great pictures. They look so tasty!
My cherimoya does this all the time, I think its just aborted fruits. Its dropped about 3-4 dozen fruitlets already. If you try to pick it, it will probably come off quite easily. I don't think its a disease, there are some good pictures on the web of a sugar apple disease that will mummify even large mature fruits, it cracks like dust.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2005 at 1:53AM
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bonsaist(Z6/ Bethlehem, Pa)

I love sugar apple... it's hard to find in pennsylvania.. I'm looking for fresh fruits.. are there anywhere I can order fresh fruits?
pine island is selling them as fruit basket and are very expensive.
Thank you


    Bookmark   August 6, 2005 at 12:57PM
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Eggo(z10soCal LBC)

time to share some pictures. Here's some cherimoyas

This one looks scaly but once it matures it becomes a smooth skin cherimoya.

more cherimoyas, this one has an indented surface. Its kind of hard to take a clean picture of because of the shade created by the leaves.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2005 at 2:22PM
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Eggo(z10soCal LBC)

bass, pine island is the only place I know of. Anybody know of other sources? I've tried ordering before but they can't ship fruit to California.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2005 at 2:23PM
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gcmastiffs(z10 Florida)

Ooooohh, Eggo, those are GORGEOUS!!!!!

Please share your pollination techniques. I tried hand pollinating my Sugar Apple tree this year with no luck. The pollen will not stay on the brush or up in the female flower.


    Bookmark   August 6, 2005 at 2:36PM
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Eggo(z10soCal LBC)

Lisa, I don't think I could explain it any better than this site cherimoya pollination technique
What you collect is the anther? Once inside the black surface of a film container you'll be able to see the tiny white dustlike pollens. The tricky part is getting the pollen at the right, most cherimoyas(I'm too sure about sugar apples) will change into the female stage at late evening before nightfall. This is the best time to collect and pollinate, if you don't find any male stage flowers, you could refrigerate the pollen, its good for about another day refrigerated after that its usually no longer good. Organic brushes hold the pollen better but if you use a synthetic one, just rub it a few times with your fingers and it still holds pretty well. #2, 3 brush is fine, doesn't really matter as long as it can fit into the male stage flowers. Once you pollinated you can't really see the pollen sticking but when you swirl it around, if you look closely you will notice the dust like pollens floating in the air like fine powder.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2005 at 3:10PM
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patusho25(z11 Mexico)

Hope I can get a cherimoya, a red sugar apple and an atemoya, Grafted! I just can´t find decent priced trees.

EGGO: Did you grow your trees from seed and then you grafted them or bought grafted trees? Not sure if they will take so long to bear fruit if they were seedlibgs. These fruits seems so delicious

    Bookmark   August 6, 2005 at 3:24PM
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Eggo(z10soCal LBC)

Patusho, their seedlings. It took about four to five years to flower. I know it isn't any kind of superior commercial variety but still a very very good fruit. I never grafted anything onto them.

Its kind of hard finding any grafted sugar apple or atemoya in this part of the country. Yes I find then incredible, I have these trees and I still frequently buy the fruits at the grocery stores until mine ripens.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2005 at 3:34PM
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Eggo, Where did you find seeds for Red Sugar apple. I currently have one Sugar Apple tree that has one fruit on it but have been looking for red variety and have not found any.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2005 at 12:59PM
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Eggo(z10soCal LBC)

I never had seeds of the red sugar apple. Maybe Lisa can share some? =)
I did purchase a few seedlings though from Florida but from what I understand some may come out red and some may come out green.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2005 at 3:04PM
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gcmastiffs(z10 Florida)

Got to eat our first home grown Atemoya today. What utter deliciousness! Mmmmmmmmmmmm... So sweet, so creamy, so flavorful. It really impressed my husband that a bumpy, rather ugly fruit could taste so superb.

Next up is a Red Sugar Apple. Now that is a **beautiful** fruit! I hope it tastes as good as it looks.

I will be happy to share seeds.


    Bookmark   September 18, 2005 at 11:11AM
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northtexasgirl(z8 FTW)

Hey there Lisa. Oh, it sounds YUMMY!! Do they have as many seeds as the Cherimoya? I would love to have some seeds. Today, I worked on starting a new area for my "tropical fruit tree orchard". I can't wait to see different ones growing. :)


    Bookmark   September 18, 2005 at 8:16PM
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Im impressed with Lisa's cherimoya tree. I thought you can only get fruit in California. Awesome!!

    Bookmark   July 12, 2007 at 7:02PM
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I am green with envy. SOB SOB I want some!!! jejeje I love the taste of them. I make a trip to Homestead sometimes just so I can buy them at "Robert Is Here" and eat them up. They don't have them over here in Sarasota and when you do find them they don't taste the same. Congratulations on your harvest. Enjoy one for me will ya.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 12:50PM
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gcmastiffs(z10 Florida)

Susana, you could grow Sugar Apples in containers. You could bring them inside when a freeze is predicted. They go dormant in Winter, but may die if temps go to 28.

They are small trees and are easy to keep under control. They are heavy producers, and start at young ages. I consider them terrific fruit trees, easy, fast, small, needing minimal attention, and the fruit is oh so good!

I have Red, Green and Golden Sugar Apples, Geffner Atemoya, 4826 Atemoya and Golden Atemoya.

I will have lots of seeds available within a few months, as the many fruits are maturing.


    Bookmark   August 2, 2007 at 12:26PM
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Hi Lisa, wow! you have a beautiful sugar apple tree. I just bought two grafted green sugar apple trees from Pine Island in Miami,FL last week when we were there for a week vacation (we live in Texas). I will plant them in the containers.

May I ask how do you grow your sugar apple tree? what kind of fertilizer and how often do you give to your tree?
Please share some of your expertise to help me grow my sugar apple successfully like yours. I'll be very grateful.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 9:11PM
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I had a sugar apple tree. It does have fruit (unripen) but the leaves are so small and not really green. The tree is more than 6' tall with a few branch. Can I do a heavy prune on it in Spring?

    Bookmark   August 17, 2009 at 12:23AM
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My sugar apple tree seems to be growing pretty well but I notice that the leaves look a lot more beat up then those pictured here. More yellow on them and not quite so neat and shiny. Is ths normal for Sugar Apple trees in South Florida?

    Bookmark   August 20, 2009 at 10:31PM
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