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Opinions on Cara Cara Navel Orange for N. San Diego County, CA

Posted by hoosierquilt z10a/23 Vista Calif (My Page) on
Wed, Feb 23, 11 at 12:36

I posted this over on the Citrus forum, but thought I'd also post here, since I'm hoping some of my California citrus lovers can offer up their Calif opinions :-) I'm getting ready to head to Clausen's to pick up a Gold Nugget and a Page mandarin, and thought I'd like to also have a nice eating orange. I think I have two Valencias (both were in such bad shape from roof rats and ground squirrels, they were completely unrecognizeable at first) which are slowly coming back, and I back a very large abandoned Valencia orange orchard, so have my juice oranges more than I could ever use. But would like to have a nice, sweet eat-in-hand orange to round out my little home orchard. I am a mandarin lover, so if that helps any, and like my citrus (actually all my fruit) nice and sweet. Would love opinions on the Cara Cara. Nice to have something a little out of the ordinary, but not at the expense of flavor.
Patty S.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Opinions on Cara Cara Navel Orange for N. San Diego County, C

  • Posted by bahia SF Bay Area (My Page) on
    Thu, Feb 24, 11 at 1:59

Cara cara is nice and sweet, even here in the cooler summer conditions of San Francisco Bay Area. I also like your choice of the Gold Nugget Mandarin, another winner for flavor and ease of growth here locally. Have you considered a blood orange?

RE: Opinions on Cara Cara Navel Orange for N. San Diego County, C

Really good to get confirmation on this tree, bahia. And yes, I have a Moro I planted last year. No flush or flowers, yet, same with the Bearrs lime and the Pixie mandarin, so I'm going to pinch the tips to force new growth. Plus put down fertilizer. Hoping we're all done with this crazy cold weather, so my new growth doesn't get nipped. Here's what I've got in my little home orchard for citrus right now:

Two oranges of unknown variety (probably Valencia of some variety, were in such bad shape when I moved in in Fall '09, I couldn't even tell what type of citrus they were, one still may not make it)
Moro Blood orange
Cara Cara orange
Meyer Improved Lemon (survived the neglect and has a gazillion lemons right now)
3 lemons of unknown origin (probably Eurekas, don't think they're thorny enough to be Lisbon; one might possibly be a Meyer, no fruit on that one, yet)
Melogold grapefruit
Cocktail grapefruit
Rio Red grapefruit
Oro Blanco grapefruit
Bearss Lime
Pixie manadarin
Algerian Clementine mandarin
Gold Nugget mandarin
Page mandarin

I think I've probably got just about everything that interests me, and more than enough fruit for our little family, plus most of my neighborhood, lol! Hoping my Moro, Bearss and Pixie start doing something. The grapefruits are pushing out huge numbers of gigantic blossoms and have some fruit already setting. Apparently they really like their spot in the garden. They are up at the top of my back yard, north side, facing south, and very protected from north winds by my neighbor's house which is perched up higher than my house, plus a row of lovely olives on the west side, which help to break the prevailing ocean breeze (we're about 7 miles from the ocean, in a canyon that faces the ocean, pretty cool). If I have time, I'll snap some pics of my areas I have planted my various trees.

Patty S.

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