Atlanta Fruitman’s Blog


New Pawpaws!
April 2, 2009, 3:40 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

We ll it looks like I will be getting my tree new papaws pretty soon.  I extra excited by the fact these are ordered from one of the best papaw breeders in the nation – Neal Peterson. His stock is on always on back order. Of course, I have no idea where to put them. I have 3 trees already that are not growing the way they should, so I am a little nervous about putting them in the same location. I am really anxious for some fruit off my trees. I have waited to long with the others. I only got one other fruit 2 years ago. Though it was heavenly, I want at least few pieces of heaven every year.

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Loquat Wisdom
March 24, 2009, 1:14 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

This is the last of the old post. My fruit explorations still occur. I hope  to write about them to share with people and hear about there gems of knowledge along the way.

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This past winter was one of the mildest I have seen in a while. I think we may have gotten down to only 20 degrees briefly. None of my hardy plants even got any leaf burn. I covered my Jelly palm, Ichang Lemon and Thomasville Citrangequat, but I don’t even think that was necessary.

The surprising result of this mild winter was that all the blooms on my Loquat tree in the front of my yard had all survived!  Loquats bloom during winter, which seem to always get killed by our >10 degree low temperatures; I have searched high and low for a variety that may bloom later in the season with no luck. If I could find a tree that blooms in mid February, I would escape most of the harsh freezes and get a good crop each year. The past few years I may get few that survive with a bit of care, but with no severe freezes this year, I did do anything this year and got bumper crop. It is hard to tell immediately whether the loquat blooms survive a chill or where they are even pollinated, the flower is small, pretty and mildly fragrant, but behind the flower is a just mass of fuzz. It is not until weeks later that you will begin to see the swelling for the forming fruit or the shriveling dead flower stalks. To my surprise, I was seeing a lot of swelling fruit. As spring approached I was anticipating some automatic thinning, but the tree kept all its fruit. I tried to do some thinning on my own. This was very hard for me, I waited so long for such crop and I didn’t want sacrifice any. I thinned very few. I only thinned fruit that were misshapen or to close together or to high to be effectively pick, Thinning will give me a good size, but just could not do it the way it needed to be done. At the last NAFEX/CRFG meeting I was fortunate enough to sit in on a talk on loquats, I was told to get optimum size you will need to thin to 3 fruits per cluster. Mine were more like 5 or 6. I was lucky to get any; I did want to look a gift horse in the mouth.

Oh well, I will just wait to see what happens. The fruits got larger and larger and soon a yellow hue was starting to show. The clusters were getting heavy. I thought the branches would break from the weight of the fruit. I was beside myself with excitement. I started to be concerned about how I would keep the squirrels and birds away from my prize. Usually I cover the 2 or 3 surviving fruits with foil or a bag, but there are so many now, I didn’t know if it would be worth it.  I decided to chance it. I would let some of the Nanking bushes carry some fruit to keep the birds occupied while the Loquats ripened.

(Oddly enough the Nanking cherries seem to be a good diversionary crop to have in general. My Stella sweet cherry and Goumis are not bothered as long as there are Nankings available. I think that because these cherries are the first fruits to ripen and they are the right size for a bird to swallow and not have to take somewhere and pick at, they seem focus on that one type of fruit till it is all gone. Nankings tend to produce heavily too, so it will be a while to get through them all if you can keep the big flocks away from them or attract territorial birds.)

This strategy seems to work too, but there were other things to worry about.
I noticed on of my neighbors eyeing the tree from time to time. He is not much of a fruit lover and doesn’t care for my tastes, but for some reason he was interested in this tree, though he has never heard of it before. He is generally a good soul and very nice to me. So if he wants some once they are ripe I would be happy to share. The fruit swelled more as they turned yellow and softened. My neighbor would ask my every time he saw me if they were ready, I told him,” no, I wanted them to be completely golden before they are picked”. He was eyeing two very large fruits facing the street that were nestled invitingly in a flush of leaves right at shoulders length. I told him I was saving those for my friend Ghaleb who introduced me to the tree and I wanted to share them with him next time we meet. About another week past and I was asked again about the fruit. This time I was told that they are ready and are quite good, He decided to just start without me; this kind of disappointed me. I wanted to be there when he had his first bite and I also thought it was kind of rude to go behind my back like that. He would now pick a few whenever he past my house. This was fine. He has given me things over the years, so I liked that enjoyed something mine. Soon other people were coming out of the woodwork to taste my fruits. People were stopping along the street asking me what that tree was and what the fruit taste like. People who would never even look at me before were now being very nice. A kid would stop me while being outside ask me to ask me if he could try one of the fruits. Now why would a kid even know this is edible I asked myself. I briskly stated the fruits may make you sick and continued working.  The kid responded, “no they wont, the ones I had yesterday were very good”. This child of about 10 years old just told on himself, but also crushing my lie that I made up on the spot. I told him to take a few but don’t eat them all at once, because I did want his mom saying I made her kid sick, which with this litigious society we live in, this may be a real concern. This just further irritated me. Then I hear people walking along the road would just pick some fruit to carry home with them. Do people not ask anymore!? Do they not have sense of propriety?  The next few days I want our to pick the large fruit I want to give to my friend Ghaleb only to find that it was gone! I was boiling!!  I felt violated! I waited so long and took so much care and to have it swiped just like that. I really felt my neighbors had turned on me. Luckily none of them were around, because I would have taken back my fruit and freely shared a piece of my mind!  I picked a few fruits and I stormed back in doors.

Later that day, with my friend Galeb I sat and we feasted on a few of the fruits. It pleased me to see his face when he bit into them. These fruits reminded him of his youth in the Middle East.  You don’t see loquats in the shops here, so it is rare for him to get a treat. That experience warmed my heart a bit. As
I shared my fruit with others to try, I really felt proud to give them a new taste experience. Soon I began to realize that I had plenty to share (and not just of my fruit). It was silly for me to get so angry. I thought back on the little boy that asked me about the fruit. Instead of pushing him away, I think I missed a real opportunity. This may have been a real chance for me to give to him something special, something more than just a sweet snack to someone who really may have been open to learning. Learning about the natural world – learning about where fruit and food comes from. I could have shared a piece of my knowledge and maybe opened his eyes to growing some things of his own. I could have told him to plant the 2 to 4 seeds in the fruit in his yard, and watch it grow to have a tree of his own. Who knows what that would have sparked in his mind? I could have even had a young new friend.

Soon I began to share the fruits with all my friends. These became quite the conversation starter.  People, who knew of them, ate them as a kid from Florida or California. They smiled, as their mind was a wash or memories.  The other people, for whom these fruits were a new pleasure, had all kind of questions about them. Some even wanted to plant the seeds to see what would happen. Simple pleasures like these seem to make me want to explore more fruits and share even more. I always jump at the chance to talk to friends of mine about what I am doing and to help them start with a few fruits if I can.

I never saw the kid again. I am sure one of these days I will see him passing down the street. I hope I be in the frame of mind to sit and talk to him for a while. Maybe even give him a plant seedling. I am always planting seeds of various plants. Maybe I can plant a few seeds in a small fertile mind as well.



Another fruit moment
March 24, 2009, 1:10 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I was recently working outside while some people were resurfacing my street. A smallish Asian man came up to me and asked in broken English about my trees. I went down the list as he pointed to the selections in my yard that he seemed familiar with but not the name I was calling them till I stopped at the Jujube. His eye widened and told me that he used to eat them years ago in Laos. He missed the fruit of that tree. He had been looking for one to grow and wondered if it bought it here. Though I barely understood him, he had that gentle smile of longing on his face. I went to the back and picked out one I had in pot and gave it to him. He was excited and pulled out a wad of money from his pocked to give to me and I refused it. He thanked me lightly bowed and ran back to his truck. Of course I felt rather good inside after that.



The Bee Watcher
March 24, 2009, 1:00 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Another older post. I still like to sit at either side of the window and watch the bees. The mason bees are as I type this.

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It is surprising what nature can show us when we take the time to look and learn. A world is right under out nose and we often dont see it. One way I discovered a little slice of this hidden world is by observing my bee nesting blocks. I was never all that much in to bees and wasps. I thought they would just sting me if I got to close, so I just left them alone unless they had a nest to close to a door and then I just sprayed to get rid of them. All bees and wasps were all just like hornets and yellow jackets to me. Oh yes, of course we had the occasional mud-dabber near the door that we also had to also get rid of.

It was not until I started working with my fruit trees that I began to notice various different insects, all the different pollinators specifically. I enjoyed (and still enjoy) watching the honeybees swarm around my Nanking Cherries in early spring. These are my first plants to bloom, and the honeybees from a nest unknown, always seem to find them. Often I will find not just honeybees, but solid black bees, bumble bees, large carpenter bees, small knat sized bees, and iridescent bees (the wasps seem to come out later in the season). I also found that as they are feeding, they really just ignore me, and I can get very close to them and observe them lapping up the nectar from each flower and storing pollen. Simple pleasures like this (and lack summers oppressive heat and misquotes) is what makes spring so wonderful.

Each of my trees seems to have it own (though overlapping) community of pollinators. Soon after the Nanking cherries and hardy Almond blooms fade, my Autumn Olive blooms with a huge proliferation of tiny yellow bloom to make the whole tree have yellow tint. One would think a whole nest or two of honeybees come for the banquet by the numbers that show. This is one of my favorite weeks in spring in around mid March (spring break for me) when this happens. I sit under the tree in the morning to waft the mild intoxicating fragrance of the tree and watch as the swarm gathers. I will sometimes bring a cup of tea and book if its warm, and just spend a few hours there. The tree also attracts a huge number of ladybugs that will visit my hand or shoulder from time to time.

But what one tree I was really concerned about was my Jujube tree. For a few years the blooms would come and pollinators would come in modest in numbers, but no fruit. I also noticed that few if any bees would visit the tree. The pollinators seemed to be wasps and hoverflies. Where were the bees? Did they find sweeter nectar elsewhere? Did the tree need the bees?

This is when I started the second chapter in my interest in insects; I was convinced my problem with the jujube was pollination issue. I had two varieties, so I added more and I started thinking about getting some bees. The obvious answer was honeybees, but they require some work, which I was not ready for right now, and I didnt know about my neighbors reactions. One neighbor and good friend has a real fear of bees and snakes. I thought the constant sight of bee house from her back window would not be good for our relationship, so looked into other options, I soon stumbled on Orchard bees. I think it might have been a past Pomona article that alerted me to them, They have the advantage of less pest and disease problems, a small cheap nesting block, and they virtually non aggressive. I bought a nesting block which consist of basically a coffee can full of cardboard straws and the extra straws of hibernating bees. I set the can next to my bedroom window so I can see them come and go through the day. I would come in from working outside or on the computer and watch the bees go out and come back with their rumps full of bright yellow pollen.

As I was researching orchard bees I noticed there were a number of different ways in which people made their nesting blocks. One site told you how to make your owns and also about the sizes for the different kind of bees and wasps. This peaked my interest, so last year I made a few.This project has been so rewarding, I thought I would share how to make a nesting block and my results from it.

This is simple project with simple tools and materials that you can do in your spare time. All you need is 4X4 post block of non-treated wood. Actually this may be the tricky part. If you dont live by a lumberyard, finding non-weather treated wood may be chore. Ask around. Home Depot and Lowes stores in my area only carry treated post wood and plastic/wood composites. The composites may work, but they are very expensive. Hardwoods are best, but I think most any wood will do. Pine, although cheap, tends to ooze resin sometimes, I dont think some insects like that, but other actually seems to use it to seal their holes.

Once you have the wood you want, cut it down to the size you wish 1 foot length is easy to handle and relatively light. Use a pencil and ruler to marker where you want to dill the holes. It is suggested the closest you want the holes centers are a half inch away. This measurement is for orchard bees. Other bees and wasps will have their own distance boundaries. Dont worry, bees and wasp will make their own territory boundaries and this interplay makes it more interesting, If you want a variety of bees and wasps, you can select a range of drill bits from. I used 1/8 at the top of the block to 5/16th at the bottom skipping a size each two rows. Experiment with different sizes. Make sure your hole goes all the way through the wood. This allows for easy cleaning of abandoned nest holes at the end of the season with pipe cleaners, A drill press makes the drilling more easy and automatic, but a hand drill is fine; just take special care that you are drilling straight down in the wood. Once all the holes are drilled, get a blowtorch and char the front face a bit – then sand. Apparently bees like the variation in color of the charred wood better than the plain wood. Next I lightly coated the block with a spray polyurethane (this may not be necessary if your keeping it out the rain or using weather resistant wood). A slanted water resistant roof would be good if you pant to put the out in the weather. Cover the back with some thick tape. I used metal duct tape. This is so you dont provide an entrance for pests and parasitic wasp in the back. Lastly, I put in some small loop screws in the side for mounting. Thats it!!

I put my little bee/wasp condo right up against my window next to the orchard bee nest; I am only inches a way from the holes where I watch in detail and even photograph all that goes on. Both nests are out of the weather and I can see them any time I want. I found that they seem to prefer their nest on the morning side of my house, which is fine for me because I can watch while I relax in my bed. I have seen wasps and bees in shapes and sizes I have never seen before – tiny wasps and large bees. I am not going to describe all the bees and wasps that I see making their home in my block. That would take another few pages, plus your insect populations will be different than mine. You will be surprised by the variety and the behavior that you will see through the season. I am now trying a few blocks using 2X2 inch wood and smaller than 1/8th inch holes. I see some very small bees and wasps on occasion; I am wondering what else I might be missing with the larger holes.

If you dont make one of these blocks for yourself, I urge you to make one for your children or grandchildren. What a wonderful way to introduce someone to the wonders of nature safety in their own home. The nests seems to be most active in the heat of the day, so when it gets to hot for me to work outside, I can still enjoy a piece of the natural world in the house

And what about the Jujube? This is now an afterthought in light of what is going on in my back window. I actually think now it may be a question of the trees maturity. The tree seems suddenly now to put out a wonderful fragrance this spring and it is visited by a lot more pollinators. I am also beginning to get fruit. Did the bee blocks make a difference, I dont think so, I do see some of my wasps and more pollinators of various kinds visiting the tree though. This year the tree is covered with fruit! If they all mature ok I will be very happy indeed.

…now all I need is a good bee/wasp of North America field guide.



A Quince of a Different Name
March 24, 2009, 12:51 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

This is another old blog that I enjoyed. I hope you will too.

Last weekend we had a great plant swap by our neighborhood garden club. I look forward to these events every spring and fall. It..s a time that I really get to meet with other plant lovers from around the area and talk about stuff in there yard. It..s also a time to share with others my interests and help them if they have problems. This time was really special because I found yet another treasure right under my feet.

I was in for very special treat after the event. I went by a new friends house to tour her yard. This is a girl that pops up from time to time at some of the shows I go to. She inevitably asks me to dance Salsa with her, which I know nothing about and feel very awkward on the floor. She seems to love to dance with me anyway. She shows up randomly and after a song or two she vanishes in crowd never to be seen again. It was a surprise to see one day on the street at a movie preview and get an invite to tour her yard. She was having a yard sale that same day and her house was right across the street.

I arrived at the plant swap location a little early and I saw her setting up for the yard sale so of course I helped a little till the others arrived, then after the event I came back over to get the tour. Of course her house and yard was wonderful! She had some hardy white 4 o’clocks that left seeds everywhere. We chatted as we snatched up some seeds. When we bumped into each other earlier that we she had mentioned something about a Quince tree in here yard. She was unsure of it and I thought she was mistaken; after all, I was told that quince trees would most die off from Fireblight and Quince Rust in the southeast. So the last spot of the tour almost floored me! She had a huge mature quince tree in her yard full of Mango sized fruit. She was not impressed with the large ..rocks.. on the tree or the ground. The hard fruits got in the way of her yard mowing. She asked me if I wanted some and I greedily took all on the ground and within arms reach. The tree was about 30 feet tall with little if any sign of disease. The bark was smooth and mottled like crepe mertle. I thought I have found a real unfound gem. I know a few people would love to have such a specimen in their yard, and dreams of propagating and offering this to other fruit hobbyist researching resistance was running through my mind.

Let me stop here say that I understand why some people would find this real odd. Why would I get so excited by a little liked obscure fruit that may be resistant for a few diseases? After all, it..s hardly a rare plant, though most people would know what it is anyway, nor would they care once they did find out. Well, I guess I have been looking for a project to sink my teeth in to; something that I can contribute to the fruit growing community at large. There is a plant explorer deep down inside of me that wants to express itself. I don..t have the money, land, time or just plain guts to go tramping through jungles of East Asia of the mountains of Kazakhstan looking for the next new fruit or variety of fruit, but at the same time I would like to put my little marker out there and offer something. A lot of what we (and others) are often looking for is right under out feet. Just like with my little adventure with mulberries at the Claremont, (see my earlier blog) or the large purple figs that found next to the Casbah restaurant, I hope I am ready and open for next little discovery in my path. I am always hopeful that it will be a big one too. Someone said that a very hardy a mature Grapefruit tree was discovered near Macon, Ga! (most commercial grapefruits die back in north Florida) I haven..t seen it yet, but apparently it exists.

I let my imagination get away with me in this case because I thought this was a Cydonia quince, which would have been extremely rare for reasons that I mentioned earlier, but it was a Chinese quince Psudocydonia. This is cousin of the much more desirable Cydonia, but still edible and pretty rare down here. It doesn..t have the disease pressures of the Cydonia, but it doesn..t have the intoxicating aroma or flavor either. I only found this out by doing some research at home. I still plan to make something with the fruit. I still might be surprised. It is a pretty tree all the same. I also still plan to get some cuttings and root them as well as plant the seeds from the fruit. My disappointment did not shadow the fact that this is still a tree worth exploring. The good thing about all the quinces are that they have along shelf life, I have then still in the bag in my kitchen, I will get around to making something with them. I guess the real moral of the story is the keep your eye open. One person..s trash(tree) is another..s treasure.



Nature’s Surprize
March 24, 2009, 12:44 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

This is an old article this I wrote a few years ago. It is one of my favorite fruit moments and people seem to like reading it. So….

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It’s wonderful how nature surprises you when you open to it and when you least expect it. I was out late last night. Though I was sleepy, at the same time I had bug-in-my-butt to get out of the house and go dancing, so I decided to go to the Claremont Lounge. Ok, I guess I need to pause here. Those who know what this place is, what is looks like, what it represents in Atlanta may be either grinning or grimacing about now. If you don’t know this place…well, that will be a story for another time. This grinning or grimacing reaction should intensify when I tell you that I had really interesting food experience there. As your stomach begins to churn now at the thought at eating at such a place, and question why this has anything to do with what would be termed “natural”, less even gardening, rest assured that with the most a sharp eye and open mind, nature’s beauty can be found most anywhere. I am getting ahead myself here; so let me back up a bit. After the dancing to Romeo Cologne at the Clermont, which actually I spent more time in the front entrance talking with the bouncer and doorman laughing at the strangeness that comes in and out that place, I was heading back to the car when I noticed a small mulberry seedling next to the telephone pole near the entrance. Ok, let me sidebar again to say that anyone who knows me know I seem to have a fetish when it come to fruit trees. I wont bore you by attempting to explain my perversion here. Anyway, back to the story. When I looked at the leaves, it looked like a Morus Ruba (or a hybrid) not the typical white mulberries that you see around as weed trees. FYI-I should also say that mulberry varieties and fruit colors have nothing to do with each other. Also I then noticed stains on side walk by the seedling of what look like fruit. I looked up and there was a larger mulberry tree branch over me with tons of ripe fruits hanging just within arms reach. It was if the tree itself was just saying, “here have meal on me – of me”. I had to try one. There were so sweet. It actually tasted like ripe banana; the over ripe ones that have as much black as yellow on the skin. I ate another one…I was hooked. I guess I was hungry. I gorged myself for the next 15 minutes on this hidden treasure. My hands are still stained from the juice. It was about 2 am in dark corner of the street. I could half see. I didn’t know what I was putting in my mouth. I could only wonder what people thought of me as they past by, One guy yelled out, “what are you doing to that tree!” I told him it’s a mulberry and fruits are great. He stared at me blankly and went on his way. Only after I had my fill and rested, did I realize that I should have collected them and washed them. I could be eating bird crap and bug for all I know. What the heck, more protein, right? I was drunk. Not on the booze that was being served just few yards away, the drug of choice with most of the patrons there, but on the moment of discovery and nature’s bounty. The tree was still covered with ripe fruit. I didn’t want to see this go to waste. I wanted others to know what I discovered. I wanted them to have the same ironic pleasure that I had in finding this gem in such a dive place. I went to the car to get plastic cup I had in the back seat. I filled the cup with berries and went back to the Claremont Lounge. My hands were stained purple as well as my face from the fallen berries and juice from my mouth. I presented the cup to my friend at the door. I said, “you have to try these”. This was a mistake. People have different sides to them. Sides that maybe contradictory and looked upon as odd to the general public. I realize my interest (my fetish) may seem odd to the people. Usually, I may ease it in to conversation with others. Most people gently laugh in disbelief, but as I continue to talk about it, they begin to take me seriously. But to confront a friend with this in wee hours of the morning in front of the Claremont with the products of my fetish …from the Claremont, was not something that anyone was open to accepting. A group was around the door as I came with my gift. I presented the doorman with my gift. Once I saw the bank stare and furled brows of people around the door, I knew slipped. Most city people don’t even know what a mulberry is, less eat them. I took a few of them popped them in my mouth to assure people that this was not a set-up for a joke. Still no one tried them. I was thanked with certain veiled politeness and everyone continued with there one conversation as if I was not there. I thought it best not to push the issue. I walked back to my car. If they threw them out, that was missed opportunity. I had hoped they would try one before they did. I wondered if became the butt of the new jokes. Did I replace the on going story of the baccalaureate that fell drunk against bar and busted her chin? Would they even know what to make of this? As I continued home, I thought of other friends that would be pleased with such a gift and who would be up there with me picking berries and cuttings from the tree to see if they could root it and have it in their yard. I guess this was a way to assure myself I was not so strange. Where were they now when I most needed the backup. Some of you gardener out there may have had similar stories to tell. Finding a plant growing out of a crack in the pavement behind some forgotten place. You happen to have a shovel with you and the moment takes over. You don’t care what people are thinking. This is the passion of plants. The same kind of passion some people have when they find bargains at flea markets. I say own it! After all, one mans trash (tree) is another man’s treasure. As an after-thought of this whole mulberry story is the wonderment of why so many mulberries are around here. Well, some of you may know that in Georgia’s early history we had to get a big silk industry going once the secret of how silk was make got out. Apparently the Chinese guarded this secrete wit h fear of death. So who ever told either got rich or killed. This is a real tale that I would be a lot more interesting than Alias or 24. Anyway, silk trees were brought over from China and propagated here. The industry failed, If I remember, they first brought the wrong trees and then the worms didn’t flourish here because of climactic differences. I think about 1800 they stopped and started cotton, but the trees were still here and become feral. The progeny we still see to day. Red mulberries (which have the heart shaped leaves and I think are somewhat native to North America) and White mulberries what we mostly see (which have three fingers to there leaves) are everywhere. I think if people wanted to look for great fruiting varieties, I think may be the area to start. I say all this to let you all know that I want to taste more of what is out there in mulberries. Actually, I think everyone should. If you have one or know of one that is most flavorful, please let me know. UPDATE: I am currently trying to propagate this tree for the seconbd time trought grafting and rooted cuttings. Wish me luck!!



Citrangequates
March 23, 2009, 12:34 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I love Thomasvilles! I know all of you are saying …..what?  So let me back up. I got some fruit seedlings from the bamboo garden in Savannah, GA. of a hardy citrus called Thomasville Citrangequate. This was from a gorgeous 30+ year old tree with deadly 4 inch spikes surrounding the base. So yes, you can grow citrus in Atlanta. The great thing about the tree is that it is VERY precocious. It started fruiting in its fourth year from seed. Thats good for most trees, but great for citrus. Most dont get going till their tenth. But why do I love this tree so much. Well, maybe it was partly due to the wait, but also the look, taste and experience of eating this fruit is very special. The fruit is teardrop shaped and can range in size from a medium size fig to a good sized plum. My first crop was flawless orange yellow which gave a nice contrast to very dark green leaves. Because of it Kumquat heritage, there is not bitter pith to the fruit. In fact, the skin is mildly sweet, which contrast nicely to the sharp sourness of the pulp. The pulp tastes like a grapefruit to me. The lack or pith means you eat the fruit WHOLE! There may be a 3-5 seeds in there (which you will easily find and save!) I am the type that eats a good grapefruit without sugar( if I can peel the pith and membrane off). The skin also gives you that little tingle on your tongue and lips that Grapefruit rind give if you ever had candy from the rind. So this gave a joyous experience eating the fruit. Unlike most kumquats the the fruit was juicy and big enough to take few bites from just one. Now in the off chance you have heard of this fruit, you may have also heard that it has the “Poncirus wang” taste to it (The very hardy Poncirus being another part of its heritage). That may be true for some, but I can say I have never tasted it mine. I tend to believe that there may be a 2 or more races of these Thomasvilles and I happened to get the one that doent have this taste, or maybe I and my friend just dont taste it. I can say I am a “super taster” so I dont know. My tree is growing fast, I cant wait till I get enough of these little gems to share with people and to make things with them. I cant say this is my favorite tree in the yard yet. I is usually is what ever I am harvesting at the time, but can say I will really look forward to tasting the fruit and propagating this tree next year!

PS: another surprise for last year have been my Ichang lemon that has leaves that smell like the more tropical Kiefer Lime!

Unfortunately, both trees got hit pretty bad by out up and down tempreatures, so they lost a lot of leave, but it seem that they are coming back I hope to get plety of fruit out of them this year