Fruit Recommendation for Strange spot

badduckyJanuary 3, 2013


I moved around some Texas Sage near my front door and discovered by standing up and spinning around with my arms out (I'm about 6' tall and had a good 3-4 feet of give on each side) that I could plant a dwarf fruit tree there, instead.

About the location: It's southeast facing, with a lot of morning sun, but it will end up being pretty close to the front porch - about six feet away from the foundation. It's in a space between the house and my neighbor's fence, and my own backyard fence to shade it once the sun passes over midday. I would love to increase my fruit production on this spot, but I'm concerned about the half-day of shade. I'm also very concerned about the proximity of home foundations. It's about 6 feet away from my porch foundation, and about ten feet away from the neighbors'.

I've already got two dwarf peach trees, a fig, a small blackberry patch, and a muscadine vine, with three container citrus (calamondin, lime, and variegated lemon). Blueberries are scheduled for a place in my backyard closer to spring, already. I'd prefer something I don't already have.

I'm curious what others might recommend for planting that close to the house, in a part-shade situation. I'm not concerned about bugs as much as I'm concerned about the foundation. Is there a dwarf or semi-dwarf fruit tree (or fruiting shrub or vine, fruiting thornless succulent, etc.) that I could trust about 6 feet away from my foundation? (I've heard horror stories about apples!)

If there isn't one, that's a perfectly good answer, and I'll probably just plant some ornamental annuals or wildflowers.

Thanks for your advice!


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Not knowing exactly how many hours of sun you have in the spot I'm going to go out on a limnb and say blood orange. At least look it up.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 2:57PM
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roselee z8b S.W. Texas

I haven't grown the blood orange, but come to think of it my Satsuma orange is planted under the eaves to be close to the brick wall for warmth. With the overhang and other trees around it it doesn't get much sun and produces a nice crop of very sweet seedless easy to peel fruits that we really enjoy. I think the Satsuma variety of citrus stays fairly small.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 5:42PM
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One of my neighbors has a Satsuma, and it's about 30 feet tall... A little big for the spot. I'd have to investigate rootstock, though, because that could easily be a deciding factor in size

It gets 6-8 hours of sun, all in the morning into the afternoon.

I was poking around and though I had some good ideas, I think I'm going to stick to potted plants, for now, whatever I do!

Thanks for the ideas!

Regarding Blood Orange: I've heard they don't develop well here because the nights don't get cold enough. Is that not correct?

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 9:16PM
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Not sure yet since they fruit Feb/Mar as I recall. I just planted mine this fall. It's about 4' tall. I'll post when I get fruit. It does like colder nights, warm days. But not cold below 32. I wondered if your spot might sort of mimic that. They are small trees and can be grown in pot and u will get fruit.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 12:18AM
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So... Thinking about your recommendation, I agree completely. I love blood oranges, and I'd like to give one a shot in March. I am a tricksy sort and would find a way to get the temperature right for redness over seasons of experimentation.

Also, I love Yuzu and Mandarin. I've measured it out better and I can do three whiskey barrel'ed citrus trees of about 8 feet high.

Mandarins are all over and readily available. No worries there.

Where would a new person to San Antonio locate a Yuzu tree, or a Blood Orange?

If I only plant three citrus - and that's all I could do - these are the only three I want. Yuzu and Blood Orange. (I'm near-ish to Rainbow Gardens' northwest location, but I've never seen citrus there since I moved in to Texas this autumn.)

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 8:30PM
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roselee z8b S.W. Texas

I noticed Shades of Green had blood oranges a couple of years ago. I just checked Fanick's website since they specialize in fruit trees, and though they list 20 varieties of citrus there are no blood oranges (unless they are listed under another name), but you might want to give them a call or visit their nursery. They are an old family owned nursery and I have found them to be very knowledgable and trust worthy.

Here is a link that might be useful: Fanick's Nursery

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 10:58PM
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roselee z8b S.W. Texas

I just checked the link to make sure it was right and discovered you can take a great 360 tour. Clicking on the yellow arrows take you down lanes to visit various areas.

Here is a link that might be useful: Take a tour ...

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 11:05PM
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Seriously, they aren't just decorative, they have yummy fruit too! Also, they tend to bloom & fruit in seasons that are different from other fruit trees.

Buy the tree when it's fruiting--some produce fruit that tastes better than others.

(also--part shade/close to house/small spot = no prob)

    Bookmark   January 17, 2013 at 3:24PM
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No cold below 32 F? We've had colder than 32 a few times just this week! I suppose if kept in a container with wheels under it, it could be wheeled inside someone's garage or something. I've avoided citrus all these years just to avoid that kind of thing.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2013 at 4:21PM
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If the temp deters you how about a Kumquat?
I bought one last spring with fruit. Transplanted it into a large pot. It bloomed and fruited again in the fall. Much better flavor than the supr sour ones often in stores.

This is a rather small tree but had loads of fruit.

I was told they are the most cold hardy of the citrus, but I kept mine in a pot because I'm between D and FW.
I am enjoying this thread


    Bookmark   January 23, 2013 at 9:29AM
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Meiwa kumquat...pop them in your mouth like an orange grape with 3 seeds.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2013 at 4:18PM
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That's the one I have! I hope to get another this spring. It is so easy and gratifying to grow.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2013 at 8:14PM
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A needless followup, but my wife and I were gifted some loquat seeds from a local source, and we're starting some in pots to transplant into the spot in question. We're planning on using it as rootstock for clippings from a friend's tree. It will be a lovely, slow process, but fun! Thanks for the rec, everyone!

(Alas, with the citrus shipping restrictions, all the citrus I would have wanted is too hard to find for me to bother with when loquats are everywhere and we tried some and they are *delicious*...)

    Bookmark   February 21, 2013 at 1:44PM
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I LOVE loquats. Probably my second favorite fruit, next to mangos. Glad you picked it.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 5:46PM
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Loquot is a great idea for that area!

I was going to suggest a Meiwa Kumquat.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2013 at 2:05PM
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roselee z8b S.W. Texas

I don't want to discourage you from trying to graft loquat, but a friend who did a lot of grafting said loquat is one that he never had success with. Before putting in the time to grow the root stock from seed, etc, you might do some research and see if my friends experience was just a fluke or if others have had good success.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2013 at 2:42PM
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Well, I don't know about grafting loquat, but loquat seedlings are often good fruit without grafting. So even if you have trouble getting a graft to take, you'd probably wind up with decent fruit. I hear they are fairly quick to fruit from seed, too. Grafted loquat trees aren't that unusual in nurseries that specialize in exotic fruit trees, so it certainly can be done...

    Bookmark   February 25, 2013 at 9:00PM
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I got young Meiwa Kumquat and Improved Meyer Lemon at Costco for $20. My guess, year old grafted stock.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2013 at 3:55PM
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redrac(9 NW Houston)

In San Antonio I would go with satsuma Miho Seto Xieshan or Owari on poncrius trifolate or better yet Flying dragon about 8 feet tall PT about 12 feet Miho is more upright than droopy. Also Kumquat is good I have Chang shou more like an orange taste and much bigger fruit. Satsuma good down to 22 and maybe more when older Kumquat might get close to 17 degrees.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2013 at 5:39PM
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Lin barkingdogwoods

One of my garden club friends and neighbors has a loquat tree growing, flowering and fruiting on the east side of her house with about the same exposure you have. She and her husband are gone all summer, so this gets no supplemental watering and does fantastic!

I haven't had luck yet duplicating the location, but I've already scouted where I'll buy my tree: Bob Wells Nursery in Lindale. While I don't see loquats on his web site, he has these trees in two greenhouses that are lovely and good prices!

I also see from his online store that he also has blood oranges - I wasn't looking at citrus, though the greenhouse smelled lovely. I've been there in person, picked up some berries and fruit trees (pluots and a chocolate persimmon) and am very pleased with the selection!

Here is a link that might be useful: Citrus at Bob Wells Nursery

    Bookmark   February 28, 2013 at 7:48AM
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