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Uknown Guava's bloom

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

I'm happy to announce my guava's from Lowe's planted 3 years ago finally set flowers in my zone.

Thumbnail by Lily_love
Dublin, CA(Zone 9a)

Looks like Pineapple Guava (Feijoa sellowiana aka Acca sellowiana)
http://davesgarden.com/pf/go/1398/index.html
It's a different genus than "real" guavas which are Psidium, but it does make edible fruit (I've never tried them though so I don't know if they're good or not)

San Diego & San Fran, CA(Zone 10a)

I agree - I think it's a Feijoa. They're more frost resistant but a bit different than "real guava". Blossoms are edible as well, BTW.

-ellie

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Thank you, I love this tree. Will learn more about Psidium.
Kim

Dublin, CA(Zone 9a)

I don't think the Psidiums will be hardy for you, I think at best they're hardy to zone 9

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

Mine are doing well here in zone 8, and I read they can take zone 7, but may lose their leaves in winter and suffer some frost dieback, but still be root hardy.

One note about the taste...the fruits taste much better if grown in acidic soil. Mine is growing in high alkaline soil, which makes them a bit bland. This was a real disappointment, since I absolutely love the taste of the ones you can buy at the grocery stores around Christmas-time.

-T

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

seedpicker,
You can add admendment to your soil and turn it to acidic from alkaline soil. Doing that so you won't have to move your mature tree, wich would be more a challenging task.

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

Yes, I've tried that, but it won't work here. It is not just the soil, but our water is very alkaline, too. So, every time I water, I make it more alkaline.

I've even added acidifier to a gallon of tap water and used one of those ph testers...even with the acidifier, it read less alkaline, but still came up more alkaline than neutral, and no where near acidic ...*sigh

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Ecrane3, your expertise is needed here, so now, what to do? Everyone else, don't be shy, come in and share your experience. :-)

Dublin, CA(Zone 9a)

If you have alkaline water as well as alkaline soil, I think you're going to have a very hard time keeping things on the acid side. It might be a bit easier if you keep the plant in a container instead, then you can add amendments to the soil easier and also maybe try acidifying the water in the watering can as much as you can, then maybe you can keep it acidic, but planted in the garden I think it's going to be a lot tougher to do (and will take a lot of effort and upkeep)

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

Yes, I agree. That is why I don't bother...it is in the ground and way too large to put in a pot.

I was not looking for help with this...just mentioning an observation about the taste of the fruit in relation to the soil it is planted in...
:0)

Marianna, FL

My pineapple guava has good taste--a little hard to describe though--very tropical and sweet. I find they ripen best to let them fall off the tree and then maybe bring them in to refrigerate for more ripening(like kiwis).The fruit could stand to be larger, though. I've heard of grafted varieties which are supposed to make bigger fruit, but never seen one. I have slightly acid soil.
I've never seen them sold in stores before. Where did you see them sold in a store?
Sugarcane52

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Sugarcane;
If you look for the fruits, try the oriental market. Down here, we travel to Atlanta Ga. to find these Markets.

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

My local Super-Wal-Mart has them in the produce section every year around Christmas...
-T

Marianna, FL

Seedpicker,
Around Christmas sounds about right. My pineapple guavas usually don't start to ripen until about frost(early December usually) or later. They aren't good until the green color gets darker and the fruit softens some. The inside can have a texture like strawberry jam sometimes--and perhaps a pineapple-strawberry taste. I like it--can't get enough of it. It's a rich taste, though.
What size are the Wal-Mart fruit ? Mine may be only quarter size (or a little larger)in diameter. After you peel them with a knife, there's not a lot left.
Sugarcane52

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

The ones that my bush produces are about the size of a golf ball, only oblong. The ones I buy from super wal-mart are more like egg-size.

They are definitely tiny, though, and at $1.50 a piece to buy, a bit pricey, too.

I still end up buying a couple every year, since they are more acidic, and taste better than mine. They do remind me of the acidity of a pineapple, or even a really good and tart flavicarpa yellow passion fruit.

Have you ever tried the popular drink: "blending the fruit pulp with ice, water, sugar, and a pinch of bicarbonate of soda"?

I didn't try it like that, but did blend some to make a summer coctail...yum. Trouble is it takes a LOT of them to make even two drinks. That is why I wanted my own bush, lol

I guess I could always add a tiny pinch of citric acid to mine???

-T

Marianna, FL

Mine are rarely golfball size. Is yours a grafted/named variety ?
Sugarcane52

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

I wish I knew...it came from Lowe's and didn't have its tag :0(

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Coincidentally that's where I got mine. :-) Lowe's.

Marianna, FL

Thanks!
I'll check out my local Lowe's to see if they have any with name tags. They CAN be planted from seed, I understand, as well as rooted or grafted. Mine is either a seedling or rooted cutting bought from a technical school nursery maybe 18 years ago. My attempts to root cuttings from it were unsuccesful--however, it has layered itself and the layer is probably 6' tall now!
Sugarcane52

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

I'll have to try layering mine...I had the same experience with cuttings: failure!, lol...

I did grow some from seed from one of the purchased fruits that was the largest, and that I thought tasted the best. I've traded most away, but still have a couple...they have greener leaves, and seem to want to grow more like a tree, than my Lowes one...

Tolleson, AZ(Zone 9a)

You should try the flowers they are really good and very sweet!!

This message was edited Jul 9, 2007 8:19 AM

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

My petals were just as bland as my fruits, but I can imagine how good they'd be on a plant grown in acidic soil.
I remember they were very sweet...almost too sweet.

Marie-Is your soil on the acidic side?

Tolleson, AZ(Zone 9a)

No not acidic at all . But they tasted so good. I even had the kids eating them. I have not gotten any fruit though. :o(

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

You know...it is the strangest thing...my neighbor bought one of the very same feijoas that I have, from Lowes, and we planted them in the ground at the same time, and everything...she lives 5 houses down from me. Hers has not fruited in two years, and mine has fruited every single time.

I think it has a lot to do with the honeysuckle I have climbing the fence next to the feijoa. It attracts honey bees, bumble bees, carpenter bees, sphinx moths, ...you name it.

One of those must be entertaining themselves on the feijoa, while they're at it with the honeysuckle...

Tolleson, AZ(Zone 9a)

Funny I have 2 different honeysuckles planted next to mine!! I have lots of pollinators just no fruit. I guess I will plant another next spring for good measure!!

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

I've often heard you need two plants for pollination, but mine is obviously self-fertile, because it bloomed way before my seed-grown ones...

Marie-I've got some 2yr. old (from seed) ones if you are up for a trade. Since they are from seed, there would definitely not be any chance of them being the same clone, lol...
-T

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Last year, I raised the same question. Does the tree require another to cross polinate. Last year too, my guava gave me one single flower. This year the flowers production has increased but not abundantly. And these dozen or so flowers are making fruits, tiny ones as of now. ...

Sydney, Australia

My garden" bible" says that these shrubs fruit a lot better with cross pollination with another different plant (not struck from the same parent).It also says to treat them the same way you would treat an orange in terms of climate and feeding.It states that seedlings may never bear much fruit but are still pretty and will pollinate other named varieties.The variety "Mammoth" has the largest fruit.
It makes a really good hedge and can withstand wind.....you can clip to shape.Now my own experience is that they need just a little nip in the air in Winter to have that really sweet taste......they are pretty tough and will spread by suckering from the base.
Hope that helps everyone.

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

sucker from the base??...oh, dear. I didn't know that.

I always seem to pick the suckers, lol
-T

Marianna, FL

Maybe to clarify : my feijoa layered itself from a limb 3 or 4 ' from the base of the tree--not a sucker, per se. I only have had only 1 bush for about 18 years and it produces without a pollinator. It MIGHT would do better with a pollinator. It MAY not fruit this year because the drought caused the blooms to fall off badly :o(
Seedpicker, I would be interested in a trade for a few of your seedlings. Want some sugarcane ? P.S. I have a cousin who lives in Richardson. I went to a church in Plano when I visted him several years ago. Great little church in a shopping center then. My cousin grows a few plants, too.
Sugarcane52

(Taylor) Plano, TX(Zone 8a)

Sugarcane-
small, small world, lol...

Yes, I'd love some sugarcane, but can't have any...I tried the purple one, and it was just gorgeous, but died a slow death. I have a "forest of trees", and very few sunny spots left to either plant, or replant. I'm afraid that they don't like me, and I really don't have the room. I'd be up for trading something else, though! Send me an Email me if you'd like to work out some other details. I'd be happy to trade one off.
-T

Venice, CA(Zone 10a)

Hey Lily_Love; Feijoa's are invasive weeds here in Southern CA.They are larger than a golf ball,elliptical in shape.The taste is exactly like Wrigley's Juicyfruit Gum (Yellow wrapper).I would be willing to bet that this was the inspiration for the gum's flavor.

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Would you kind send some of those weeds in exchange for some cherrish blossoms such as brugmansia? I'd love to have some.
Kim

Dublin, CA(Zone 9a)

Don't you already have them? Feijoa is the same thing that's in your picture at the beginning of the thread.

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

I've one, and flowered but no fruits :( I guess shipping isn't feasable, I may need to go back to Lowes and get another variety in Spring.

Marianna, FL

Lily_love,
I, too, have 1 Feijoa and it fruits without a pollinator. However, no fruit this year because of major drought.

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Thanks Sugarcane; I'll sit back and wait 'til next year. Thanks.

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