Thursday, 11 September 2014

Fruit Central

As we have so many fruit trees on our half acre I thought I would do a walk around and record how they are growing in early Spring and note what we need to do to protect them from our infamous Queensland fruit fly as well as other pests.

We have three peach trees and I can't remember when we have ever harvested peaches so I am on the CEO's case this year and we had a discussion about how we could grow the fruit without using spray as he had tried the baits but they didn't work. 

So it was decided to cut one tree down to a manageable size and tie one of our Netpro insect nets over it as a trial.

Then there are the many fig trees which are coming to life after winter. We had great success with covering the figs with multiple calico bags last year so will do the same again. 

Other fruits that need pest protection are the apricots....

....and guavas. I am not sure what we are going to do with them but, as the apricot tree is not huge like the guava, we might cover it with our other insect net as we bought two to use when growing brassicas in winter.

Fruits that tend to look after themselves pretty well are the tamarillos...

...mandarins, lemons, oranges and grapefruit ...

...and avocados.  They probably could do with some TLC so I will have to do some research about what they need. I am not sure I want the mandarin tree to produce any more fruit than it already does as I spent hours juicing mandarins this afternoon to produce a few jugs of juice some of which I used to make a Mandarin and Date Slice which will be the subject of my next post. I can tell you are all waiting impatiently for that :-)

Moving right along, the pawpaws survived winter so who knows...we might even get to eat some pawpaw this year. I have a feeling that the birds and flying foxes might also have the same idea but am not sure about that. Does anyone know if they like pawpaws? 

 Then there are some of the more unusual fruits growing like the White Sapote which will probably be cut down soon as the tree is massive and is trying to push the shed over :-)...

...Monstera Deliciosa, the Fruit Salad Plant...

...and the Cherimoya which the possums fight over every night. Firstly they have their Zumba lesson on the roof, then slide down the solar panels into the Cherimoya tree where they fight and feast during the early hours of the morning...right outside the bedroom window! 

UPDATE: I forgot to include the Jaboticaba tree in the less common fruit section. You can read more about it here  if you haven't read that post. I also made some Jaboticaba Jelly from the fruit back in June. It fruits twice a year.

We also have an assortment of berries which I must remember to check on as the CEO forgets to water them and it has been fairly dry here lately with just a couple of days of drizzle. We are growing Blueberries for the first time this year and I am nursing along our new plant and will need to protect it from the birds and same with the Strawberries.

Our old mulberry tree is going to be cut down and replaced with a Dwarf Mulberry to make it easier to pick the berries. Also the flying foxes have been a real pest the last few years so we haven't even been able to pick any from the lower branches due to their droppings on the fruit. 

So that's about it in the fruit department. No I could I forget?

 There are lots and lots of grapevines growing along the fence which the birds just love of course. 

Hmmm, I think there is a bit of work to do in the coming weeks to protect some of these fruit trees from pests and I also saw on Better Homes and Gardens that the citrus trees need some TLC now so that will be added to the list. It will be interesting to look at this post next year and I hope I can also record some good harvests.

Do you have any fruit trees growing?


  1. Hey Chel,

    Funny to read this as I was just writing about our lack of fruit trees and you came to mind :) Love the photos. I am curious about the fruit salad tree.Is it edible?

  2. Vicki, if you click on the link under the photo there is info there about when it is ready to eat. I forgot we also have the exotic Jaboticaba growing but it does take a few years before you get any fruit.

  3. Hmmm the orchard on our family farm was enclosed in netting (wire). It was the only way to keep everything out. Walking through the gate was like entering another land. Because it had a wire roof the trees were all kept to a manageable height. If you cant pick it, it becomes food for the critters. I would love an enclosed garden. We went past what was Grandmas house on the farm the other day and the house has been left to rot but there along the side is the orchard. Completely untended yet still flowering. I was itching to make my way down the lane to have a look, but that would be trespassing. Same thing with our homestead. It burnt down years ago but all the trees around it are still there - look really weird.

    Youve got some really unusual fruit there.

  4. What a shame you couldn't visit your grandma's orchard, Lynda. It would be great to have everything covered with netting but 1/2 acre is a but too big to do that as the trees are scattered around the property. My aim is to save a bit more fruit each year. I am sure the night critters won't go hungry!

  5. you have quite an orchid going Nanna Chel, ours is a fair size as well but you have more of the exotic warm climate fruits. we get the birds and possums but thank goodness we dont get the fruit bats as well.

  6. We are actually in a cool temperate region here so the pawpaws don't usually grow here but so far they have done okay. I guess once they start ripening the birds or bats will start getting stuck into them. They are a bit high up to cover but I might see if hubby can scale a ladder and do something to protect them from the flying pests.


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