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Gopher vs Seville Orange tree

Posted by svanessa 9/SoCal (My Page) on
Mon, Mar 10, 14 at 18:41

A gopher nearly destroyed my Seville sour orange. It's hanging on by 1 side root. The 4' tree can't stand upright on its own so I have it staked. It is leafing out and looks OK.

My question is will wounding the base and using root tone or other hormone help it to grow more roots at its base so it stabilizes? Any other ideas to get it to produce more roots? Should I throw out this 4 year old tree and try to find this rare variety again?

Thanks, Sue


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Gopher vs Seville Orange tree

Do not wound your poor tree any more than it's wounded. It will NOT help to stimulate root growith, but may end up girdling the tree and spell its ultimate demise. Continue to fertilize with regular citrus fertilizer. Set more gopher traps. Staking is a good idea for now, until it have developed significantly more root growth, as attested by a significant amount of leaf canopy increase. I would leave the tree staked for at least a year, maybe two. You would be surprised at how resilient citrus trees are. I nearly lost a small Valencia I had given up for dead due to a gopher attack. It is back and doing well. If you do need to replace, it's going to be hard to find a Seville, as the only grower I am aware of that propagates the Seville is Four Winds here in California, and they cannot currently ship to S. Calif.

Patty S.


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RE: Gopher vs Seville Orange tree

Sue, this is a sad thing. We plant all our trees in gopher wire baskets, and so far so good, plus we do our best to get rid of the evil voles and gophers.

Can you take cuttings of that Seville and graft or bud onto something else for preservation in case the tree dies?

Suzi


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RE: Gopher vs Seville Orange tree

Thanks Patty, I'll leave it alone for now to see what happens. I bought it at Atkins Nursery in Fallbrook 4 yeas ago. They specialize in citrus. Even saw my first Buddah's hand, really cool-looking fruit.

Suzi, I have gopher traps in active holes. They just cover them with dirt AFTER they have crawled across them to get the enticement I put out. I can't understand how they didn't trip the traps...three times now...so I'm going in for the kill, bait.

As to grafting, I've never done that but want to. I've only a Lisbon Lemon to graft to. I haven't bought any other citrus yet. Too busy with my figs!


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RE: Gopher vs Seville Orange tree

For the most part, T-budding is easier and more often successful for citrus than other forms of grafting.

Even I can get about 30% success rate. If you are grafting onto an older Lisbon, I would try about half a dozen T-buds on wood that is about a year old.


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RE: Gopher vs Seville Orange tree

Thanks, John. I will give it a try. In the mean time I dug a moat around the tree tonight, deeper than the gopher tunnels. ;-) Also baited several holes.


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RE: Gopher vs Seville Orange tree

Atkins has the same issues all propagators now have, Vansessa - citrus propagators in the state of California are now required to do all propagation under screen. Atkins does not have a screen house, so they can no longer propagate their own trees. They have to get them from a grower who can propagate under screen. So, we are now much limited in what cultivars are available to us here in California. They can order certain varieties to be propagated from certain growers, such as Willit & Newcomb, Citrus Tree Source, etc. If Atkins doesn't think they can sell those rarer cultivars,however, they won't grow them. Most of us CRFG members in N. San Diego county have been good about buying up those rarer cultivars from Atkins, as well as a few other growers in Fallbrook, including Durling Nursery, who also would propagate some of the rarer cultivars (like the Valentine pummelo), but they now must depend on the larger commercial growers who can invest millions in screenhouses. And, it may not be worth the additional expense, sadly. So, do what you can to save your tree.

Patty S.


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