Fruit Trees

Lychee Trees, Diseases and Bats - Green Thumb Sunday

Green ThumbThe lychee is one of the most delicious fruits you will ever taste our boss Greg Daley says they are his favourite. Lychees are a fruit tree which can have what we like to call a Bumper Crop. I visited my Nanna Maisy last week in Tweed Heads who has a lychee tree which she got from Daleys Nursery 20 years ago and it looked fantastic.

lychee Tree Full ViewIt got it's first harvest in the first 3 years when it was small however when it was 10 years old it got a disease which caused a lot of the leaves to fall off. Maisy was going to cut it down however it came good and ever since it has been getting huge crops like this one. She says she never waters it.
lychee tree close up2 years ago a flying fox got caught in one of the nets and luckily my brother visited that day. He freed the bat and took off all the nets. Although it was uncovered not one bat visited the lychee that season.

flying fox australia
Unfortunately their memory is only for a season and last year the Bats came when the lychees were the same size as the ones pictured, they ate every single lychee even though they were green.

Because the tree is huge Nanna has placed only a few nets over the lychees at head hight. The bats came again the last 2 nights and each morning nanna is picking up 2 buckets full of half eaten green lychees they have however not eaten the ones at the bottom with the nets.

After it crops I am going to visit and give it a very aggressive prune to about 2.5 meters so that it can become mananageable again.

Green Thumb Sunday Blogroll

Green Thumb Sunday - Coffee Beans

I am one of those people who dreams of the perfect cup of coffee. Here is a picture of my k7 coffee plant that I have had for 2 years now in a pot. I can't wait till they turn red.

Other Blogs done on Coffee Plants
Growing your own Coffee
Coffee Plants in Pots

Green Thumb Sunday

My very first pictures for this green thumb Sunday are my Glenn Mango Tree in a pot. And a close up of my very last Gulf Ruby Plum just before I ate it. Plums are in the shops at the moment but I must say the one I grew had such a full and rich flavor. The ones in the shops are bland, perhaps I am biased. Green Thumb Sunday Blogroll

How To Grow A Mango Tree in A Pot

If you are in the city, have a small backyard or are renting then growing a mango tree in a pot could be just for you.

The first thing to do is choose a variety:
Colder Climates (eg Victoria)
- Mango R2E2 Seeding - More Hardy but takes longer to fruit
- Mango Nam Doc Mai - Good cropper in cooler climates

Subtropical or Tropical Climates (eg Northern NSW and QLD)
- Dwarf Irwin Mango Tree - Resistant to Black Spot
- Glenn Mango Tree - Semi Dwarf Variety and My Mango Tree pictured It is also resistant to Black spot
- R2E2 Grafted Mango Tree - We have all seen this variety in the supermarket and they are huge, non-stringy and taste great.

Choosing A Pot
I would suggest getting one of similar size to the one in the picture. How it works is the smaller the pot the smaller your plant and the sooner it will flower. The bigger the pot the bigger your mango tree and the mango tree may take a bit longer to flower.

Growing Mango Trees in Cooler Climates
Now is the best time to get your Mango Tree (Oct-Jan) Or I would suggest as soon as Spring breaks. The longer your mango tree has to establish and harden up the better. Ask your nursery to choose you one that is well established. That way when winter comes your mango tree is settled in. Working out ways to protect your mango tree from frosts while it is young will be your biggest challenge.

Potting Mix - The best quality you can afford.

Mulch - Lucerne is best but Sugar mulch will do to keep moisture in.

1st Year Flowering
If you purchased a grafted variety your mango tree will want to flower straight away. You should cut all these flowers off and encourage new foliage to grow.

2nd Year Flowering
The pictured mango is a second year mango tree grown in a pot and flowered profusely when Spring broke. There is no way that all the flowers will turn into mango's so I would cut half the flowers off and encourage new growth and the other half perhaps thin out leaving a maximum of 3 flower heads which could produce 5 mango's in the 2nd year.

3rd Year Flowering
Your mango tree should be well established by now and you can be the judge.

Pruning your Mango Tree
Because it is in a pot it's growth will be bonsaied even if you chose a variety that could normally grow very tall. Nevertheless I am a huge fan of pruning fruit trees because when you prune the tips instead of growing upwards which it does so instinctively it will start bushing out which is what you want.

Fertiliser and Watering
When Spring comes on you should start applying the fertiliser and when the fruit starts forming you should give it some water. If possible avoid watering in the late afternoon due to the water sitting on the leaves and developing a fungus.

Mango's have come a long way since the old Bowen's became a huge favourite for Australians upcoming varieties such as the Irwin and Glenn can be grown with much less damage from fungal diseases which required you to be attentive come early spring with your spraying regime.
Mango Trees grow very well in pots and allow you to position them to get the Sun in Spring and protection from frosts in Winter.