My variety is: Sri Kembanqan (Kembangan)
Originated in Thailand. Elongated pointed fruit, 5 - 6 inches long. Bright yellow-orange skin and flesh. Juicy, firm flesh with few seeds. Flavor rich and sweet; excellent dessert quality.
There are many fruit already ripening in its branches. Here is a cluster of three.
flyboy, beautiful tree! Starfruit are so refreshing, and the trees are nearly indestructible. There was one in my yard when I moved in 16 years ago, didn't even know what the little tree was- it was about 5 feet tall. Imagine my surprise when I bumped into it with the lawn mower and a starfruit fell out. Sadly, several years ago, the water softener system developed a undetected leak and started dumping brine right near the tree. It was too late when I finally figured out what was happening.
Your tree looks really healthy, enjoy!
Very nice! My dad is a mailman and I trade plants with two guys on his route. One of them has a starfruit tree and he just gave us a big bag of the fruits a couple of weeks ago. They are definitely much better than store bought; I couldn't believe how juicy they were. Plus, I'm getting into this local food idea so I think it's nice to be able to trade with neighbors.
Very nice Flyboyfl, may I ask where you pruchased it? I see a couple of them on ebay, but am wondering if they are attainable locally...I'm in Brandon/Tampa area in Florida. Also, Rene10 you said they come up easily from seed...is it worth it to start one from seed, or should I just buy an established plant? How long till they fruit from seed may I ask?
I probably should go looking to try some fruit first though as I've never had them before, but by the sounds of all your praises, they sound delicious!
astcgirl, I have the tree and recently posted i would send seeds for sase. I f you would like some let me know. I planted some seeds this summer and have two small trees about 2 1/2 feet tall. I think you would do fine to grow them from seeds. It takes them a while to come up but once they do they grow pretty fast.
I think that as citrus seems to be losing ground -- the number of acres that have been turned into housing -- (and the high price of juice) -- Florida will start producing other comestibles. I think of this and macadamia nuts.
My tree came from Crowley's, just west of 75 in Sarasota. She (Kathy) has a wealth of plants. This is what it looked like when I planted it.
Does anyone know -- does it have only one crop a year?
Linda -- if more seeds are still available, I would love to give Starfruit a try (gotta' have one of everything!).
In addition to SASE, I may have some seeds you might like -- such as the white flowering form of Texas Star Hibiscus (Hibiscus coccineus 'Alba')? At least, I hope they will come out all white. I didn't have any other hibiscus flowering near these when they bloomed.
Flyboy I have a tree that is about 25 ft tall and it bears at least twice a year. I have had fruit on mine since late Sept. and will have until February . I have more fruit than i know what to do with.
Lucy you can have seeds anytime i will have them from now until February. We have to make arrangements to get together. Maybe the end of this week if you don't have anything going on. I will be in Tampa Tues & Wed.
Starlight, as flyboy indicated they are entirely edible however, when I eat them I do cut the ridges off. Sometimes I eat the skin and sometimes i peel them. They are 100% better if they are tree ripened.
They are very expensive to buy. When they have them in the stores here they are $l.99 each. They are very good but I don't now if they are that good :}.
They do have a flavor all their own. You either like them or you don't. I have 4 sisters and 3 loves them and 1 doesn't care for them at all.
In case you have more starfruit than you can use - here's a muffin recipe that someone made for a garden club function last year. I loved them!
1 stick butter, softened
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tablespoon molasses
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
1/2 cup quick oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup chopped starfruit (carambola)
1/4 cup flaked coconut
1 Tablespoon grated orange peel
12 slices starfruit
Confectioners sugar to dust on top
12 muffin cup papers
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, beat together butter and sugar with beater until fluffy. Add molasses and eggs; beat until well blended.
In medium bowl, combine flours, oats, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. With a wooden spoon, stir flour mixture into butter mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Fold in chopped starfruit, coconut, and orange peel.
Divide batter into paper-lined muffin cups, filling each two-thirds full. Top each cup with one starfruit slice. Bake muffins 20 to 25 minutes or until they're golden brown and spring back when pressed lightly. Cool on rack 5 minutes; remove from pan and dust lightly with confectioners sugar.
My tree is only about 6 feet tall but has gifted us with about 8 starfruit already. Right now it's covered with flowers - looks like I'll need a bunch of recipes! I wonder if you could bake them in a pie - kinda like an apple pie. Seems like it would be really pretty if you left the slices in stars.
Thanks for the info. Can't wait til I see one again in the store. Gonna buy me a couple. To me, that don't seem to bad a price. Been payign almost bucks for a cantelope which I can devor in a matter of minutes all by myself. : )
Is there another fruit , say a common fruit that you can tell me what it might be simliar in taste too?
A bit off track, but doe s the Pineaple Guava Feijoa Acca sellowiania grow down there in Flordia? If it does how do you know when the fruit is ready. There a big bush I know of and it has fruit on it, but I don't know when to pick it and never had it either, thinking I heard somebody say it was edible and thought it was a tree and fruit that need the warmer climates ya all have down there.
We have Pineapple Guava at the Jacksonville Zoo and I also have one shrub of it at home. I don't know how to tell when the fruit might be ripe because we seldom get fruit. I suppose a squeeze or taste test would be about the only way, unless the fruit goes through a color change when ripe.
BTW - the Pineapple Guava flower petals are delicious! Eat them as a snack fresh off the plant or add to a salad.
StarligIiht, If i were trying to make a comparison from my tree I would say the really ripe ones taste a little like a mango, however, if not real ripe i can't compare mine to any type fruit. I use mine in smoothie a lot and often slice them and eat them with a little salt on them.
I also have Vista and hate it, can't wait until Thanksgiving when we are going to Ky and my son will remove it and give me XP. I will then be able to use my camera with the laptop. I am sixty four and don't need constant reminders, proddings, annoyances about my being authorized to do something or make a minor change. Too, too much. They went overboard with the security (cma) features.
I had a wonderful recipe for quickbread made with carambola fruit. I will try to find it today and if I can I will post. It was delicious, had a delicate pineapple flavor, but no pineapple in the recipe..
Ya know ya all are making me hungry. LOL A piece of that quick bread would go good with my cup of coffee right now. How about whipping up a piece and tossing it this way. : )
Beautiful pic of the fruit. Wonder if I can get one to grow here ??? May give it a try. I have three Kumquat seedlings that I had found when they was barely a coupel inches tall and brought them home and they about a foot tall now from this season. Put them in the unheated gh so hopefully they won't freeze too bad. Got a feeling I will be waiting 20 years before it fruits though at the rate it is growing.
Flyboy... who did you buy your tre e from? Think I may see who got one for sale and get one with a bit of height on it. Pretty tre e even without the fruit.
I went over to LeePerks (Linda) house, this afternoon. I couldn't believe how big her Carambola tree is. It was loaded with fruit, and hundreds of blooms. The picture above is just one lil branch of that tree. (post no. 4174255)
I came home with a sack full of fruit, and a small tree. Had a real good time looking at all her flowers. : ) Thanks Linda. : )
Mittsy, thanks for the quick bread recipe I am going to try both of the ones posted as i have a tree full of fruit and fruit all over the ground. I am always looking for recipes to try. Will let you know what i think when i get around to trying it.
Cathy, No i can't say there is particularly anything i like about Vista. I feel like i am forever jumping through hoops to do the simplist of things. I would like to have mine taken off and Xp put on. I find myself using my old laptop a lot just because it has xp. I agree they went totally over the top with the security features. Couple that with virus protection and you can't seem to get anything done.
Mittsy , good for you wish i could do thay maybe i will go to KY hehe
Wow! what a huge tree. Now I'm worried that I may have planted mine too close to the house. It's about 10' away. It's hard to imagine my little six footer ever getting that big. Also hard to imagine how many fruit it will have considering how well it is producing even this little. I may have to set up a fruit stand in front of the house!
Your tree is gorgeous. (Do you know what variety it is?) Mine shows promises of getter larger -- but is still rather spindly. At least I can still get the chance to see the blossoms and the pollenators at close range. New blossoms are still pushing out.
Your fruit is also much riper than mine are. We had a very dry summer -- and the landscaper never saw fit to extend the cycle for the once-weekly sprinkling. I guess the moral is -- don't expect too much and you won't be disappointed.
Thanks, No i do not know the variety as i inherited the tree when we bought our home. The first year we were here it didn't have much fruit but I began to fertilize and take care of it and now more fruit than you can imagine. I would like to figure out what variety it is. When the fruit is really ripe it is very sweet but if you eat it before it gets really ripe it has more of a citrus tart flavor. I let all of mine ripen on the tree. The cold bit mine last year so early spring we cut it way back and I guess it was just what the doc ordered as it has produced more fruit and it is much larger fruit than before. I have had clusters with as many as 25 fruits. I have had ripe fruit since mid Sept.
I was looking at your fruit pic you posted and it appears yours is a little more pointed than mine maybe just my imagination.
Maybe when your tree gets to producing more we could swap some and see if they are different. :}
Brad, Thought i would share a picture of the bowl of Star Fruit i Picked this AM. I couldn't reach the ones in the top of the tree even with a ladder. As you can see I will be sharing . I have another pile picked previously. I pick about once some times twice a week.
Another recipe for you. A smoothie. Place 2 cups of soymilk in blender, add I/2 banana (for sweetness) 1 large or several small seeded carambolas, a few gratings of fresh nutmeg, a slice of fresh ginger, skin removed, and a teaspoon to a tablespoon of honey. Blend on high for a minute and a half. Drink up. Serves two.
MMMMM, looking forward to those Starfruit smoothies, muffins, and of course Turkey. LOL I have a Starfruit that I grew from seed 2 years ago (in a pot). It is about 3 ft. now. I think it needs to be in the ground and in a warmer climate. sighhhhhh.
Elaine (Linda's niece)
That's right...Elaine, you are gonna be down here next week. : ) Don't bring any cold weather with you. We are suppose to be warming back up. Maybe I will get to see you again while you are down. How long will you be here?
Nice! I can count 21. Thats a lot of fruit for the size of the tree. I picked a half bushel off my tree today. My have been the largest they have ever been. Are you getting your road side stand all ready? One of them looks like it is pretty close to ripe. I think it might be the same variety of mine. Enjoy them!!! Linda
I have carambolas coming out of my ears here. Not sure what is going on with my tree but it's going bananas instead of carambola. Last year I had a few here and there but this year they just keep coming. They fall to the ground and squirrels and raccoons start to chew on them or they rot. I try to give them away but many people don't like them or are unfamiliar with them. A friend from Germany just left and he ate them as if they were fruit from heaven. Anyway, I printed out the various recipies I saw here. Maybe my wife will cook or bake something with them. Just took a few shots of my tree which is really like a bush of four main stems. When I planted a royal palm near the carambola both were small and distant from each other. Now I don't know. The royal better hurry up and grow before it's pushed aside.
I also wonder if the carambola should be cut back and trimmed somehow. I can't reach the fruit way up top. The branches all hang down from the weight and might break as do many others among my fruit trees. I just reattached a naval branch which had broken off. Maybe it will grow back to the main stem?
I will try tomorrow to take a picture with the leaves pulled back so maybe you can tell. I cut them back to where the wood is about 1" thick. We trim all the larger branches as far up as we can reach with the ladder. It seems to increase the size of the fruit. When we didn't trim it back it would have so much fruit out toward the end of the branches that all the fruit remained small. We usually have one cool spell that nips the ends of the banches anyway so we just trim it back to the healthy growth.
Yours probably doesn't get enough cold weather to damage it. I am 50 miles east of Bradenton so each year we will have one or two freezes.
LeePerk I have a new baby!!! Well a seedling from the seed you sent me.LOL Thank you again. I can't wait for it to grow this coming year. 3 have sprouted so far, it took about 30 days to emerge.
astcgirl, thanks for sharing the picture. A new baby to take care of. Seems as though about 30 days is how long it takes. Maybe a little longer when the weather is cooler. Hope they do well for you. Sounds as if you might have more than you need.
My sweetsop has not peeked up yet but I keep hoping. I haven't checked the last couple of days. Will let you know when they do.
Merry Christmas to you and your family! Will hubby be home for the holidays?
Linda... NO, it was suppose to be here in 2-4 weeks. Last Friday we called them and asked where it was, because it has been over 4 weeks. They said something about next week, but we think they forgot to turn in the order, and now they are having to hurry and make it.
Sure would have liked to have it for these chilly nights. I have all my blooming orchids in the house, cause the wind was blowing them around. I sure didn't get much rain either. Just enuff to settle the dust, alittle.
I will keep your DH in my prayers. Moffitt is a great hospital. Lots of good Drs, and the staff are really friendly and helpful. I had a friend over there last year that I visited, and he is doing great now. They really know their stuff. : )
My little Carambola tree is still doing really well. I think it finally likes me. lol : )
LP,, sorry to hear you are sick.. Hate it when you have to sit in doc's office and wait with all those other sick folks.. Saying prayers for you and DH too. Too bad you don't have that greenhouse ready. Lucy, hope you get that plant house soon.
Samantha,, what a cute new c. baby! I am sure yours will do well in that nice warm Florida sun..sigh... It is in the 20's here again tonight. BUT,,, we did get almost 4 inches of rain Saturday. That is more than we have gotten in the past 6 months. I just kept looking out the window and enjoying it.
Flyboy, thanks for starting this thread. I love those tropical fruit trees. I need a lemon tree.
Has anyone grown White Sapote (Casimiroa edulis http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/62618/)? I grew two from seeds and they are both doing well (about 2 ft high now). I only need one, so if someone wants to trade... or pick one up at Molly's upcoming roundup in March near Gainesville, you are welcome to it. They grew easily from seed for me, so if you know someone that has the tree, you may want to try it. The fruit is a mushy, sweet custard flavor.
I will plant one in my newly constructed tender tropicals & cacti and succulent garden that is designed to be covered in plastic for the winter (already got that job done, fortunately). I would like to send the other White Sapote further south where it can grow without fear of damage in cold winters.
Elaine (favorite niece) & Lucy I THINK I am feeling a little better this evening. Elaine I didn't sit in the doc's office I set in the nice warm sunshine outside the door and they came and got me when they were ready for me. :} I couldn't complain to much about the wait since they were just working me in.
Elaine I am glad you finally got some rain. You can sure keep those 20 degrees temps. tho. Give your DH a smooch for me for Christmas.
Lucy I will have to come out and check out the hot house. Thanks for the offer of help. I didn't have to many to move.
Oh Elaine i do have the hot house ready. We did that about 2 weeks ago.
I got a D-mail request for the White Sapote -- just wanted to let everyone know. Hopefully, anyone else that wants one can find someone with the plants and get a seed. The seeds are about as big as a peach pit or maybe even a small avocado and they germinated very easily for me.
Lucy I do pray it is very minor. Do you go locally or out of town?
I woke up with a migrane this am. Seems if it isn't one thing its another. Heck getting old isn't it :) I have them all the time but this one was so bad i was throwing up with it. However, for some reason that seems to help me get rid of it so it has now eased off.
Linda, I go out of town. Winter Haven (Gessler)
You have got to stop this getting sick, now darn it. I'm glad you did get some relief from your headache. I've never had one of those, but I do know how awful they are.
I finally got the greenhouse at 8:30 this morning. They were an hour early. Now, I have to figure out how to shade it somewhat.
This has been a busy day, already. First the greenhouse, then over to Sebring for a haircut and highlights,...and now my DD is on her way over. No telling what she has up her sleeves.
Hope your day turns out better than it started. : )
Flyboy, I just came upon this thread. Sri Kembangan is actually Malay for "beautiful blossoms". Guessed the old Malays (natives of Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia) call them such since star shaped fruits resemble giant blooms from afar. We also eat them dipped in soy!
Sapotes...wow! If only I can grow them here..
Thanks for the pics Flyboy, am missing the tropics badly!!!
marieo - it's worth a try to see if seed from store bought Star Fruit will germinate. Sometimes fruit growers hybridize plants to have very few seeds in the fruit or to make the seed sterile, but they may not have tampered with the Star Fruit yet.
heavenscape, I will have to give that a try. (soy that is) Certainly sounds like a different way of eating them. I have a cold right now so nothing taste right. Think I will pass on the red hot chillies though even though it might open up my sinisuses :}.
I'm glad to hear that. : ) Now you can enjoy Christmas.
I'm sitting here waiting for the inspector to come and sign off on the greenhouse. I hope it passes. It had to be so far from the property lines one way, so far from the fence another way, and so far from this, that and the other.
I hope I don't have to move it. I wouldn't know how I would do that. lol : )
Lucy, don't you just love our inspectors. When we put our alarm system in they had to come out and inspect it and what a joke. He kinda walked in and said well you got an alarm system and then you pay an inspection fee. He probably can care less about where it is located.
Afraid i am not to good with shade cloth wish i could help.
Hey, Lucy. Glad the greenhouse arrived and was constructed properly! I think you can get shade cloth from both Lowe's and Home Depot. I'm not sure what percentage of shade it may offer. You might also make out cheapest by just going to JoAnne's or another fabric store and buying some of their acrylic/plastic touille by the yard. I've picked it up before for about a $1 per yard for several previous projects. I've never used it as shade cloth, but I think it would work about the same. You could always double it if you wanted more shade -- plus you have your choice of several exciting colors! Be sure to ask for the plastic based touille. I think it would hold up better and costs less than the nylon type. You might ask them to show you both varieties because sometimes they will automatically direct to the more expensive and less sturdy stuff. It should at least work temporarily and may turn out to last as good (or better) than shade cloth.
flyboy, those are beautiful!
Lucy, welllll, that $65 will surely be well spent. Now get those seeds and plants growing. (would you like some snow nymph salvia, hot lips salvia seeds or anise hyssop.. or?? It might be hard to find shade cloth anywhere this time of year... Jeremy had some good ideas.
Linda, glad ya'll are feeling better.
Well, I needed instant gratification in my quest for the white salvia. I found someone selling seeds for it on eBay and ordered some (along with some other impulse buys, of course, to take advantage of the free shipping on any additional items). Only about $15 total with shipping -- it is my gift to myself (no need to determine if I've been naughty or nice for self-gifting - LOL)
Awww, we wouldn't leave you all alone... I love all the Carambola information and chatting with my friends in Florida. My Starfruit tree is 'surviving' in the greenhouse, but it's not happy. I may need to repot it.
Merry Christmas and a wonderful, safe, healthy, happy new year. And oh yes, Happy Gardening.
Jeremy, I think I have some more Snow Nymph seeds. Will have to check on, oh just went back and read the thread. Now I hate that you bought them. It is really pretty.
I'm getting 25 'Snow Nymph' seeds for about $2.79 in the eBay deal, Elaine. Please hold your seeds and keep me in mind in case I don't get any germination from the ones I bought. This was definitely one of those "got to have it NOW!" plants so I jumped into buying it when I saw it available at a reasonable price from a Google search. I am just amazed that there is a white salvia! Thanks for introducing me to this wonderful plant.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year and joyous holidays for all other celebrations this time of year! I will have a DG online article published on 12/25 about a country Christmas memory. I can't provide a link yet because the link won't be active until the day of publication. I do hope some of you will find a moment on 12/25 or some time afterwards to read the article. It is what I'm using in lieu of greeting cards this year, perhaps a bit impersonal, but it sure saves on postage! LOL
Jeremy, saw half a dozen big plant stands with clearance plants on them yesterday at Lowe's and giggled for a while, thinking of you cramming a zillion plants in your van precariously. Nearby customers probably thought I had some sort of holiday madness syndrome!
Flyboy, since I saw your thread, I've found 2 baby carambola seedling from a beautiful tree that I unfortunately lost several years ago. Potted one up a last week and found another a few days ago! Tough little trees. Your tree is gorgeous, thanks for sharing!
I brought all my plants indoors to protect them from the cold front headed our way and just discovered I have another carambola baby. Do you need more than one for pollination? Do es every tree set fruit or are they male or female? How old must they be before you get fruit?
Oh,, we had lots of good rain over Christmas. And now,,sigh,,, so cold tonight 17. Hope the weather guessers are wrong. I had to put another layer of cover over my temporary greenhouse. And 2 small heaters going. Sure hope my orchids make it. And my star fruit tree, and blooming hibiscus, and brugmansias.. COL
Elaine, when I gardened in NY and we had an early or late frost, we'd get up before the sun hit the garden and spray everything down with water. It helped to minimize the damage. I'm going to try it here today in Cocoa Beach.
I juiced the last of our purchased honeybells this morning. We have a farmers market at city hall on sundays so I hope the citrus vendor will have all that he could pick ready for sale this weekend. I'll stock up and freeze some. We are so spoiled grocery store juice tastes sour to me now, and I'm sure with pasteurization that all the vitamins have been cooked out, too.
Flyboy I am out of town did you say the cold did or did not hurt your starfruit? I picked all my ripe ones about 3/4 of a bushell before i left and want be home until Sat. I am hoping the cold didn't hurt my tree.
sighhhhh, now this really makes me long for home in Florida. I can taste those oranges, yum. If I could just take my home and this Georgia boy on down with me.. LOL Sure hope all the tomatoes make it ok. We had around 20 here last night. All my small ponds are frozen over. Put a spotlight on my fishes to keep them from freezing. They are way down deep under the leaves anyway.
Our Orange grove come through o.k., we had microjets going all night. Alot of ice this morning. My green house only had one little heater in it beacause I had to run extention cords out to it. It got down to about 38 in there, which burnt the leaves of my Thunbergia, and a tomato. Other than that, I was surprised how much cold the plants took.
The things in the yard that may or may not be lost were..2 out of 3 papayas, Morning Glory Bush, Sunflower Tree, Datura, and a couple of Brugs. I say maybe, because the stems aren't showing mush yet. All my passion flowers are just wind burnt mainly, and were still bloomin today. (Linda the red wasn't hardly touched, so yours probably hasn't been either.)
Also, Linda, do you need me to go check any of your plants for you, so you know? I could do a walk around, if you aren't gonna be home soon. And is Rene home yet? What about her orchids?
Oh, Lucy that is sooo sweet of you, I hadn't thought about your orange trees, but the news said they would be ok because it didn't stay too cold for very long. I am sure those flowers all will be fine. I think some cold is good for them. Just not too cold. Mom is not home yet, but she put all her good orchids under the patio and it is very protected. I have several papayas if yours doesn't make it. I planted one out just to see if it would make it,,, don't think it liked the 17 degrees last night though.. time will tell. Those brugs are pretty hardy, even if they die back to the root., especially if they have any tree or other shelter nearby. I will be interested to know if the Sunflower tree makes it.
Elaine, I have't walked out to it yet, but it's all brown. It was just fixing to put out a 2nd bunch of flowers, too, cause I had removed all the seeds. I'm pretty sure it's not dead and will come back from the ground if nothing else.
I didn't even think about your mom's orchids in the trees, till today. They probably did ok tho, cause of the trees and the close houses. They will probably need water pretty soon tho, they will be very thirsty after this cold spell. I know mine were thirsty. If she needs me to go water, I can.
One papaya looks to be ok. I don't know about the fruit tho,...maybe it will drop the fruit if they are no good.
In Cocoa Beach the wind was worse than the cold, really took the leaves off my Jasmine tree. I brought everything in pots and all my phals inside. I hope the bananas are ok, it's still to soon to tell. My seedlings, (in the ground) orange and lemon trees seem to be okay. I watered everything yesterday morning because they were so dry from the wind. it also helps to rinse the salt off.
A friend gave me a huge seed from an exotic fruit. I think it may be a mango. Does anyone know if I can plant this?
I clipped this out: (saves me having to write it.)
After eating or cutting away the fruit of the Mango, the seed must be scraped clean of most of the fibrous material clinging to it. Dry the seed thoroughly. The Mango seed is large and flat and looks a bit like a taco. One edge of the seed will be slightly rounded, the other edge will be a bit sharper. Being very careful, use a sharp knife to cut away enough of this sharp edge to expose a bit of the interior of the seed. Partially pry open the seed shell to expose the plant embryo but leave it intact. Place the seed, cut side up, in a small container of water and place it in a warm sunny location such as a kitchen window. Change the water every 2 or 3 days and in a few weeks the plant will start to grow. When the plant is well established and has about 6 leaves it is time to plant it in potting soil. Regardless of the time of year that I have tried to propagate from mango seed, only about half of the sprouts have survived. One of the problems has been moving the seed from water to soil too soon. The sprout really has to be well established before planting it into moist potting soil. The temperature should remain above 72°F. Propagating this plant may be easier during summer months when heat is free. Another problem may be that many mangoes are picked before they are ripe and the seeds have not fully developed.
I believe that all seeds have to be dry before planting. The wet gunk is what keeps the seed from sprouting while it is still inside the host plant.
Only thing I can think of that I dont dry is an avacado pit. Maybe im suppose to. Just stick those toothpicks in and hang it in water. Never have lived anywhere long enough to see if the trees ever made fruit.
Thanks, I have been soaking and scraping so I'm on the right track. I don't have a sunny window but I will try the patio. I do have an avocado that I started in dirt. It has cracked open and new leaves are forming inside. I think it is great to grow newr things. Thanks so much for the information.
I don't know how long it takes avocados to bear fruit, GGlory, but they do grow and make avocados as far north as Coconut Grove. I spent a summer there eons ago doing Equus at the playhouse. We had guacamole every night because the avocados were falling by the hundreds and rotting on the ground.
There was an avocado growing on my property when I bought it 6 yrs ago. It was about 5 ft tall. I tried to move the avocado, but it died. However, it came back from whatever there was left of the roots in the original location. It gets about 4 ft tall each year, and dies back. I suppose if you had a sheltered location, you might be able to get one to bear fruit someday. One thing to note, however, is that the avocados are related to Red Bays *Persea genus) and there is concern that the ambrosia beetles may start invading and killing the avocados with the same rapid fungal disease that is killing all the Red Bay trees in N Florida and Georgia.
mmmm, I would love an avocado right now with a vine ripened tomato. Well, at least we don't have all that California weather. Been a long time since I went skiing... Hope all those star fruit trees are ok.. I remember reading that you can tell if it is a Star Fruit Tree if the leaves curl up when you touch them and it is true. Nature is amazing. Lucy, Mom put all her best orchids inside and Linda went over and covered those in trees.. such a good sister.
Elaine, That's good to hear. I need sisters like that. : ) You mean, your momma and your aunts didn't give you any of the avocadoes I gave them? My tree only had about 50 on it this year. I guess it's getting old and tired. lol
yes,, I think they shared one with me LOL.. I need sisters like that too... I only have brothers... and most of the time they are good ones.. Good question about how long those avocado trees last??
This tree is probably over 60 years old. (my DH says between 60 and 80) It rotted in the center and only lives with a half a side. A few years back, I let 3 young trees that were connected to it grow, one fell during Hurrican Charley, but the other 2 are bigger than their mom now, and one of them had a couple of fruits on it last year.
Alot of years the cold will burn the tips of the branches, and I will not get fruit. The year Charley hit it was loaded with fruit, they were like flying missles all over the yard. Not a one stayed on the tree.
Back from Tampa Lucy and everything went great DH is doing fine.
As Elaine said, I covered Lorines orchids in the trees on Wed. before i went over to tampa. Lorine will be home on Sunday.
Thanks for the offer to come check on my plants. I took care of pretty much everything that could be taken care of before i left.
I was able to take a quick look when i got home early evening. Looks like my Carambola took a hit. Most of the fruit is on the ground (I picked all that was ripe before i left). It will probably have to be cut way back but I had to do that because of a freeze last year. I think the base of the tree is fine. Actually cutting it back seems to help it.
My brugs look pretty bad but i think just the tops are damaged. I cut one way back and stuck the cuttings in water just in case. My jatropa's are bit but think they will be ok. Right now my staghorn looks ok i didn't cover it.
So glad everything went good with your DH, Linda. Give him plenty of hugs and kisses. : )
My brugs got bit also, but I think they are ok. I will keep checking on them. I do have some new ones rooted that are different, so when they get big, you and Elaine, and Lorine, too if she wants any, can get some cuttings. I will be potting them tomorrow.
Yes, I did. But, I still have to get it wired, I barely kept it above freezing with extension cords, and a small heater.
Also, I had them raise it off the ground onto blocks, so I have to put a removable floor covering on the floor in the winter. Too much wind was coming in from there. I finally went out and threw down an old bedspread over part of the floor, and it gave me a few more warm degrees. : )
brrr, cold here too..low of 19 last night, and 32 tonight. My electric bill will now chase that water bill I had all summer... (but my plants are snug in the greenhouse.) And the goldfishies have all snuggled down under the mud and leaves. And mustard greens are covered again.
I use regular 10-10-10 or 8-8-8 which ever i happen to have and i fertilize 2 or 3 times a year. I am not consitent but i don't over fertilize when i do. Bare in mind mine is a very large tree. Yes it is full of leaves if cut it way back in early April. I trim mine back each year. Will take a picture later and post it.
I have blooms and fruit. Seems to be almost a year around affair. Right now our tree has only about a dozen large fruit hanging there but when the real thing happens we have more then we can even give away. Boxes and boxes full to all comers.
You are making the star fruit sound great wish I had room for one.
On the problems with vista. I changed the protection programs now no problem. Don't as me how I know less than a 3 year old about the computer. You should hear me trying to talk to hp help line. Can you imagen a very southern lady who does not know anything much about computers talking to a person from india!!!!! Even when I understood him I did not understand. And the poor fellow half the time could not figure what I was saying. After 2am I give up. Later I figured out what he was trying to tell me.
You are lucky. (Chauvinist that I am) You spoke to a man. I spoke with a young lady who whispered -- and must have had a meter running somewhere. I honestly couldn't understand what she was saying. To compound matters, she had to look up everything on a manual. Egads!!!! We were discussing a new camera I had purchased. She got me to reset everything that I had already set on the weapon. Then my fun really started.
Oh for the good old days.
And, start one in a container. What with the price of fruit at Publix, anything you can grow is a blessing. I started an avocado from seed a little more than a year ago. The tree is now about eight feet tall -- and verdant. Next time they have another feeze in California it won't matter so much. (Maybe I'll even live long enough to make my own guacamole.)
We probably all need to learn how to garden again. Guess the 2 tornadoes in the past 2 years we had opened up more sunshine for that.
Lucy, those sista girls will help you with guacamole.
Hi Wren.. how are U?
Oh,, Wren, now I am a worrier from way back.. please be sure to watch and if you see anything unusual or feel bad, call or go the emergency room immediately. You cannot trust yourself to anyone but you.
I know my DBIL had me a block from the ER when the doctor called and told me to just bandage it, that they could not do anything until it dried you. What pissis me is I told the nuresy that I felt something pop yesterday.
Oh well thats life, I am just falling apart. Just non of ya'll make me laugh for the next few days
A little bit of warning if you know any one with kidney failure. If they eat star fruit it will KILL them. They have a large sign at the kidney dialysis center that my dad goes to, with this warning.
Yes I did . And as far as I know that is the only fruit. But there is a number of foods that people with renal(kidney) failure should not eat but non that I know of that can be fatal. The sign has been up only a couple of weeks so do not know how much info there is on the internet on it. Sandy
In my mind, the only people safe are those guys floating around in the space labs. They say that they reprocess their own waste. Sounds yucky, but that's life. Too many people know too much about too little.
Sometimes I feel that I should get down into the cellar, and stay there. (But, no more. We now live on slabs, so that won't work.)
For those without kidney failure; not many fruit have shown up, but the bees are busy, busy, busy.
Florida apple is what I call them i have a couple here grew from seed . They are very tastey I think the more we grow for our selves the better we are. I cut down nice stalk of bananas yesterday. Fly boy how did you make out with that banana tree your friend gave you? Next year it would have bananas. If your into the unusal fruit you would proably like the pomello there is a citrus nursery near me that sells them Harris citrus plant city check them out they have all kinds I bought a barbados cherry and 2 different kinds of pomello from them going back for the jack fruit I think there neat
Pineapple that is green or not fully ripe can cause miscarriages and "extreme purging." I was surprised to learn that factoid when I was doing research for my article about growing pineapples from the cut off bromeliad top.
Lee i know that is a great store Its on the other end of 39 lithia pinecrest school is close by once you see the school its only 50-75 ft after that on same side of road. Pack a lunch and stop at Alderman Ford Park its on the way. Not too far from there hope this helps you Dana
This year I had a bumper crop of carambolas. So I'm making wine out of about 40 pounds of them. I thought I was going to have to go around hanging bags of the fruit on neighbors doorknobs but finally disposed of the last of it.
Joyce I will be more than happy to send you seeds, however, I do not think you will have luck with them that far north. Guess its nothing ventured nothing gained and i sure have plenty of seeds. I used to live in G'ville so i know about the weather there.
If you want to try it just click on my screen name and you can d-mail me from there and i will send you seeds. Are you coming to the RU I plan to be there as well. Either way just let me know.
Hi,,, your tree is looking pretty good... how are you doing?
I think all those fruit trees took a big hit this past winter.
Linda's(Leeperk) Starfruit was frozen way back, but it is coming back again.. Maybe nature's way of pruning.??
The peaches up our way are doing great this year.
Well as EFGeorgia said my tree took a major hit from the winter but i have pruned it way back and it seems to be coming out looking better than before. I have not seen a lot of bloom yet and i really don't think i will have a lot of fruit this year. I will post a picture in the next couple of days so you can see what the cold did.
OK here is my tree. It is about half the size it was last year. However, it does look healthier. I have found no blooms as yet but still have hope. I really don't want as much fruit as i had last year. I could not keep up with it. I don't know how old this tree is.
Flyboy I live 50 miles east of Bradenton pretty much right in the center of Florida.
Chuck will be happy to share when there is new fruit. Seeds from last year wouldn't be any good as they have to be planted fairly quickly. Maybe some available Oct. or Nov. will keep you in mind but don't hesitate to remind me.
Has anyone tried germinating seeds from the starfruit that are available in grocery stores? The commercial fruit may have been developed to be sterile, but not much to lose by trying to germinate the seeds (and you get to eat a delicious starfruit in order to get at the seeds - LOL).
All this talk about carambola had me check my tree today. I didn't take any pictures but there are ripe and not so ripe fruits hanging inside the tree in the shade. I've seen no blooms but obviously they happened. I also cut much of the frozen branches back. The tree seems to like the trim.
Dana - did the Lakeland Carambola suffer freeze damage this year, or was it necessary to prune it as normal? Or do you prune it in the fall prior to cold weather? (I am just curious if they are more cold-tolerant as they get more mature.)
Hooray! I finally have my own Carambola! I found this one for half-price at Lowe's a few months ago and finally got it into the ground. I will provide winter protection during the freezes. It is planted in the same area as my Plumeria/other tropical fruit trees/pony tail palm/cacti and succulents. That entire planting gets a huge tent of 6 mil plastic to help bring it through the cold weather.
This is the cultivar, Averrhoa carambola 'Fueng Tung' [as spelled on the plant tag, the spelling in Plant Files "Fwang Tung" seems to be more correct].
i am in need of some starfruit experts and this looks like a good place. lol
i just got a 2 foot high little starfruit seedling from a trade a few days ago. i have no idea how long it takes from seed to fruit. does anyone know??? i am tempted to buy a fruit from the grocery store because i have never had one before but everyone tells me not to because they taste horrid!
I haven't done anything to protect my new Starfruit sapling (photo above). I planted it with some other tropical fruit trees in a garden area that I usually build a large tent over for the winter. But after staying up to 4 AM to build tents for the Brugmansia and Bromeliad gardens during the first two nights of the freezing weather, I just ran out of energy and enthusiasm and left the tropical fruit trees to do whatever they will.
So far, my Starfruit Tree is holding all its leaves despite three nights of 20s F weather with no protection, so maybe the trees are hardier than the Zone rating they usually get.
I've had yellowing of the leaves these past few nights, so brought it into the sunroom (I think this the the last year of it being a mobile size) I just don't want to lose the remaining fruit, which isn't quite ripe. I finished picking any citrus off of my very small twing trees. I see last night's freeze did the banana trees in, but they always pop back, almost impossible to kill once they get established. I'm not going to cover too much more, I'll just have to let whatever happens, happen. siiigh...
Darla - I can try to propagate my 'Fwang Tung' starfruit. I'm not sure if a propagation from an older tree would result in fruit sooner, or if the rooted cutting would still need the 3 - 5 years to become fruitful? But it won't hurt to try. I was lucky to find my Starfruit at Lowe's for a bargain price. The 4 - 6 ft trees are usually about $30. I think I've also seen them at WalMart nurseries for about the same price.
I went out to check on my carambola and was amazed to find it in excellent shape with nary a leaf dropped from the cold. Just a whole lot of fruit on the ground. One more night of this cold misery and we should be out of it but somehow last year's freeze did much more damage to my plants. Strange how this works with the multiple nights at freezing temps. Last year it all happened in one night and the damage was devestating.
Hi, 4paws. The leaves on my Starfruit sapling are now all dried up from freeze damage and have fallen off. It looks kind of "iffy" whether the tree will rebound. I perform a scratch test on woody stemmed plants to determine if they are still alive by gently scraping off a tiny bit of the outer bark with a fingernail. If there is bright green moist and fresh cambium tissue showing under the bark, it generally means that portion of the tree/shrub is still living. If there is a discolored brownish-green, brown, or (worst of all) hard dried wood where I scratch the bark, then that portion of the tree/shrub is probably dying or already dead. My Starfruit tree is showing brownish-green cambium where I scratch it, so I am not sure it will survive. Another test is to prune through a twig or small limb to examine the inner tissue. I'm also not seeing obvious signs of life by any green or fresh moist tissue, but it may just be that the Starfruit has a more woody texture than I am expecting.
If the tree/shrub has bark too thick to scrape with a fingernail, you can use a knife or the cutting edge of pruning shears to gently nick or scrape off a small spot in the bark to check the tissue beneath. If the bark is mushy and slips off easily in your fingers (as currently exists on my Mexican Sunflower Tithonia diversifolia), then that part of the tree/shrub probably won't survive.
The scratch test is useful now to determine what portion of your trees/shrubs have survived the freezes. It is also useful in springtime to know where to prune off dead wood. I usually prune just below the line where healthy green or moist tissue first appears when performing the scratch test, working from the top limbs down toward the trunk and root crown. But a tree or shrub will also tell you where it wants to be cut by displaying the line on the trunk/limbs where new leaves appear and above which no new leaves are appearing. I prune with sterilized pruners (wiped down with rubbing alcohol) about an inch below the line where the new leaves end. That helps ensure that any viral, bacterial or fungal infections have been pruned off and will not spread down through the trunk to the roots and kill the plant. When you prune, take a look at the center of the branch/limb to make sure it looks healthy. If there is any black or brown discoloration in the central core (xylem tissue), then I cut further down on the branch/limb using sterilized pruners until I find a healthy white or greenish white central core.
If you can't find any green tissue showing beneath the bark at any point on the trunk/limbs, and your tree/shrub does not show any new leaves when warm weather consistently returns, do not give up on it entirely because it may regenerate from the root crown and send up new shoots. This process may take several months before any new growth appears. If the plant happens to be a grafted plant (like most citrus and roses), then the shoots that come up may be from the root stock and not from the more desirable plant that was grafted onto the root stock. My 'fwang tung' cultivar Starfruit tree appears to have been grafted onto a more hardy root stock. There is a definite line of difference between the bark above and below what appears to be the graft just above the soil line and the characteristic slight swelling around the point where the graft was made.
Thanks very much, Jeremy, for the detailed information. I was at Lowe's yesterday, loading up on discounted plants and "making deals" when the manager did that scratch test on a camellia before marking it down, and that's the next thing I needed to research, as I'd never seen it before.
(She's culling camellias on Monday...I'll be there!)
Always glad to share info, 4paws. I'm glad my dissertation on "scratch test" was so timely for you!
I had wondered if it was an accurate method as I had sort of stumbled upon it on my own, but then I saw our county Extension Office Arborist use the scratch test to determine the health of a Drake Elm at the zoo when I worked there, so it felt a little less like voodoo magic to go around scratching on tree and shrub trunks. LOL
Alas, my Carambola bargain find, planted last fall, succumbed to the extreme winter freezes. I never got a chance to cover the garden plot where it is planted with a plastic tent, as I had done for that area in winters past. It is now officially, as in the Monty Python skit determination, a dead parrot. (But I haven't pulled up the dead, brown hard stem yet, just in case it wants to arise from the dead at the root crown.)
My carambola is growing like mad after I culled all the dead branches out. I also topped the tree as I couldn't get up that high any more. All that growth seems to require some fertilizer as these leaves show.
That's what my leaves look like too, so thought I'd start with epsom salts before fertilizer(?) What mix ?-?-? are you going to use. I don't want to throw off the bloom time with the incorrect numbers.
I think most of my plants have a magnesium deficiency. All we have here is sand. I've been very lazy, disgusted, depressed since last winter's freeze and haven't done very much in the garden. I sort of got into the attitude of letting live what can and die what must but I'll probably pay in lack of fruit on my various citrus come this winter.
I have a 50 lbs bag of epsom salt available and need to just get out there and throw a few handfuls or pounds around the place. I don't think you have to be too careful with magnesium as the plants will probably only take what they can use. I promise to do that as soon as it stops raining. :-)
Well, patience has its rewards, I suppose. I didn't pull up my dead looking Carambola and now after about 9 months of the dead stem sitting idle, I am now getting some new growth from the root crown of my Carambola. I think the growth is coming from below the graft, so who knows what sort of plant I will have, but at least it didn't totally croak in the freezes.
Happy to report that, though it was knocked back to the ground by the exceptionally cold winters of 2009/2010, my Starfruit tree is still alive! This past winter was so mild (high 20s F temperatures for two nights), the Starfruit tree did not show any frost/freeze damage. It remains only about 24 inches high and probably is a shoot off the root stock, so it might never produce good fruit, but it is nice to have to add to my list of "one of everything that can possibly grow here."
Here are some pics from this season so far...This plant is still in a container, about 5 years old. I have been too chicken to plant it in the ground yet because it "died to the ground" during a cold spell here a couple of years ago. Been picking them for a couple of weeks! Yum!
wow! can you all believe i'm too afraid to plant a starfruit! i am actually upset with myself for not planting one since i moved here 3 years ago. i absolutely love starfruit and would be proud to grow one in my yard. but i have never seen one in the local nurseries, so i'm guessing i have to go south and buy one there. one time WalMart had dwarf tropical fruit on sale and they were gone in an instant.
next on my list is a mango, how i would love to have one. my family in Orlando have had their mangoes, starfruit, sugar apple, lychee and custard apple for years. recent winters have killed the 'apples' but because the mangoes were very large, they regrew, for the most part.
It has been a great year for my little tree. It really proved to be a tasty experience. We were able to make starfruit fans of everyone that had some. These are tree ripened gems. It is about 6 ft high now and still in a container about 4 cu ft. Great garden tour conversation spot! The variety is Kajang
I've been thinking of Starfruit Flyboy. I have only been on DG since January and am happy to see this timely thread. It reminded me of it and am happy to hear Tony has had success in growing it in Ocala,...even colder then DeLand in Winter... Thank you for your informational thread!
ditto Gardenglory! i still haven't gotten a starfruit. but the mangoes in the area have set fruit! currently i'm taking care of my newly sprouted mango seed - i just wanted to grow one from seed, not necessarily for fruit that may not even happen!
Great to see those fruit again Flyboy they look great!
We have had a disappointing year with our Carmbolas so far. In the Spring we has prolific flowering with next to no pollination. The second crop is quite delayed with one of our trees with dime sized fruit and the other tree just now flowering, albeit very heavily. Here is a pic of the fruits here a couple of weeks ago.