Fruit Trees

Sustainable Rainforest

The Beauty, Majesty, and Timelessness of the Earths Rainforests are indescribable. It is impossible to capture on film, to describe in words, or to explain to those who have never had the awe-inspiring experience of standing in the heart of a Primary Rainforest.

At least 80% of our diet originated in Rainforest eco-systems. Its bountiful gifts to the world include fruits like avocados, coconuts, figs, oranges, lemons, grapefruit, bananas, guavas, pineapples, mangos and tomatoes; vegetables including corn, potatoes, rice, winter squash and yams; spices like black pepper, cayenne, chocolate, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, sugar cane, turmeric, coffee and vanilla and nuts including brazil nuts and cashews.

More then 3000 fruits are found in the Rainforest; of these only 200 are now in use in the Western World. The Indigenous peoples of the Rainforest use over 2,000 for food, clothing, shelter, medicine and tools.

Atleast half of the world's estimated 30 million species of plants, animals and insects live in the Rainforest, yet these ancient eco-systems that once covered 14% of the earth's land surface; now make up less then 5%.

300 football fields of Rainforest are lost each and every second on planet Earth, due to Logging, and clearing for palm oil and soy plantations, in order to feed an unsustainable level of human consumption.

When European settlers came to Northern New South Wales, they named Australia’s largest expanse of lowland Sub-tropical Rainforest 'The Big Scrub' (750 Square Kilometers). Today there remains less then 1% of the original forest.

Thanks to Conservationists and Activists, large areas of Sub-Tropical Rainforest around the Kyogle Bio-region have been declared World Heritage National Park’s, and there is a groundswell of Landholders and Landcarers actively engaged in ecological restoration, with the intention to create habitat corridors between increasingly fragmented landscapes.

We all have the power to create positive change in this world. If you have land and would like to create a haven for wildlife and increase bio-diversity in your backyard, check out our 6 part feature on how to create a Rainforest. Less than 10 years on and this reforestation project over in 'The Big Scrub' now has a full canopy and is absorbing tonnes of greenhouse gases, as well as providing habitat for many rare and endangered animals.

If you live in a suburban landscape, the most environmentally friendly and fruitful plantation project would be to turn your backyard into a productive food garden.

Yet, There are still many ways you can help to preserve our precious Rainforest communities.

The first step would be to go and experience the feeling, the sounds, the smells and the sights of a Rainforest. Most capital cities in Australia are within an hour or two of a National Park, get out there one weekend and treat yourself to some time in nature.

Australia is amongst the wealthiest nations on the planet, fortunately this gives us the power to contribute a portion of our income to organizations that are involved in environmental conservation.

Rainforest Rescue is one such organization that is active in the conservation of Tropical Rainforest eco-systems.

Although surrounded by the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area, parts of the Coastal Lowland Tropical Rainforest from the Daintree River to Cape Tribulation still remain unprotected and endangered.

These Rainforests are of international conservation importance as one of the most significant regional ecosystems in the world.

Rainforest Rescue's 'Daintree Buy Back and Protect Forever Project' has contributed to the purchase and protection of nine properties so far. The properties are being managed for their conservation values, which will be protected forever.

As a child we visited the Wet-tropics Rainforest and my only two memories are of pristine crystal clear water (at crystal cascades waterfalls) and of a massive strangler fig.

In April I will be leaving Daleys, in Kyogle (hopefully to return in Spring) and I'll be cycling 4,500km up north into the Daintree to raise collective awareness of Rainforest's and Sustainable Communities.

Please, stay in touch and share the journey through my Blog 'Caldera Creations'.

I'll also post updates via this Blog.

In times of climate change, world famine, peak-oil and ecological degradation, we have so much to learn from the Earth's most biologically diverse eco-system, the Rainforest, which is a dynamic and sustainable community of plants, animals and micro-organisms.

Competiton - Dwarf Fruit Trees - $100 Prize

Correy Mango TreeUse your digital camera to take a picture of a person with a Dwarf Fruit Tree that has fruit on it.

Everyone who enteres will get a $15 Gift Voucher from Daleys Nursery and there will be one Grand Prize winner who will get a $100 voucher.
- Make sure the person and the fruit are the central focus
- Smile
- Be creative
- You can enter as many pictures as you want but will only receive one Gift Voucher unless of course you win the $100 grand prize.
- Vouchers can only be used in Australia (Excluding Tas and NT)

Wampees Guy Sam, Lychees, Lolly Tree, Coffee - GTS

Green Thumb SundayMost cultures use masculin or femanin language to describe nature. And Wampee Trees and Lychee Trees are Men. I laughed when I read the description of our Guy Sam Wampee Teee.

"Wampees are a handsome foliage evergreen tree grown for Summer ripe fruit with grape like flesh"

So here are my 3 young men From Left to right: Wampee Tree Guy Sam - Lychee Tree Salathial - Lychee Tree Bosworth 3

Carla bought in some wampees for the staff to taste which she picked from 2 different wampee trees that she grew from seed. They both tasted totally different depending on from which tree they came from. One was very sour but the other was very sweet. That is why if you buy a grafted Wampee Tree like the Guy Sam you know that when the fruit finally does ripen it will have that characteristic sweet grape like flavour. But when you grow it from seed who knows how it could taste. It would depend on how it was pollinated perhaps. Sometimes the extra money for a grafted specimen from a nursery rather then a seedling from the markets or a big outlet chain which might be cheaper really does pay off with fruit trees. Unless of course you want to breed the next Guy Sam or Yeem Pay.

Also in the garden this Green Thumb Sunday are my Panama Berries which most days are giving me that abundantly sweet taste. By far the sweetest berry you will ever taste hence some people call it the lolly tree.
And of course my coffee plant is full of beans and come June in Australia I will be very keen to finally pick them after waiting so long. (About 9 months from flowering it will end up being)

Ants and Fruit Trees

So you want to grow organic fruit and your trees are maturing with new shoots and your hard work is paying off. However on your next visit you notice that someone else is working hard:

Someone who has no chief, officer or ruler but boy are they regimented.

Ants and Fruit Trees

When it comes to your scale on your citrus and other fruit trees Ants are quite happy to farm aphids and eat the sweet honeydew which the aphids secrete leaving a scale on your fruit trees and hampering new growth.

So let's assume that we are all responsible gardeners and don't want to spray our plants with poisons. What are our organic options?

One of our staff members Kath has taken some pictures of how she uses some grafting tape and Vaseline to stop not only ants but also vine weevil and earwigs.
Kath says on the art of Banding Citrus Trees: "the ant would reach it and then slip off the tree, then I put a big fat wadge of Vaseline around the tape to stop the little fellows climbing my tree. That has them stumped for a few days at least"

How do you get the younger generation to love Gardening?

To start us off our good friend the blogging nurseryman cited the younger generation are now being taught the advantages of buying and eating locally. He said "... I feel we are on the verge of a whole new renaissance in growing our own food. Not just for survival, but for the aesthetic, social and physiological benefits that growing our own food organically brings."

What are your thoughts?