Brisbane Local Food

Growing local

I went to Lissa's garden visit today and had a wonderful time.  I was chatting to some lovely ladies (Karen was one but as I'm hopeless with names, I forget the other names -> please comment below so I can remember :) and started talking about my fruit trees.  So here is a tour of my garden for you guys to have a peak at. 

This is the view from my front balcony.  From the left lower corner, you can see my grape happily growing away - planted about 2 months ago.  The multigraft apple is in the center (has about 6 apples on it at the moment but can't see in this)(planted 2006) and at the right of that image is my dwarf valencia orange (2013).   Over to the right image, there is my Eureka lemon (2012) to the right of the path and in the center, you can just make out another fruit tree which is my multigraft peach/nectarine (2006).

This image is at the end of the path you can see in the above picture.  I have a dwarf emperor mandarine (right 2013) and pomegranete (left 2013)

Below are closer shots of my peach/nectarine and the apple.

Here are my wicking beds that are going well.  I know they're not fruit trees but I wanted to show off how well they are doing.  This photo was taken at 1 pm, full sun for entire day......NO WILTING!! Amazing. Cucumbers in one and melons in the other (the smaller one is where I had to replant after my dog jumped into the beds going psycho at a delivery person.

In the first photos, you can see where our cars are parked.  This area is over past them.  I've just cut down a huge ponsietta tree so am now planning to plant another dwarf mango out here but I already have two banana's (ducasse and goldfinger - i think 2012 first fruit), Passionfruit (2012 - no fruit yet), a pawpaw starting beneath it and the left photo is australian native raspberry (2013)  I grew these a couple of years ago but they were very invasive so got rid of them.  Missed them too much and there really isn't a lot of room for them to spread in the front driveway so hopefully their new location won't cause me too much drama.

Still haven't got to my back garden but for some reason this would not let me load up any more photos.  I'm going to post this and if it will let me add more later, I will or else will start another blog post.  AhHa!! I worked it out.  I published and then went back in to edit and it let me add more photos.  Gosh, I'm clever :)

So this next is the view from my back balcony.  1) is where my blueberries are and the "real" vegie patch.  2) is where the lychees and mandarin are, 3) the fig etc and 4) is where the custard apple and dwarf mango (which are also shown)are growing.  These were both planted late 2011.  No fruit from the custard apple yet but 5 mangos last year and 2 this year.

Close up of the blue berries.  Have 5 plants, but only planted the last three this year so they are tiny still.  See the nice big blue one -> it obviously got missed in this mornings raid.... I quickly rectified that oversight :)

Here is the imperial mandarine and my two lychees.  These have been in since about 2007 and have all fruited quite regularly.  This year however, my lychees had plenty of flowers, but no fruit.  They were covered in little white things that were probably scale.  Everything I read said that it was hard to get rid of.  My solution, cut them right back and burn the infestation.  This is about the 3rd week since the cut back and as you can see, they are recovering quite nicely so hopefully I'll have fruit next year.  There is also a problem with my mandarine this year.  I noticed all of these ants clumping around a sawdust pile on the trunk of the tree.   Googled my little ass off to find that it was woodborers :(  I cut the main infested branch down (what you can see is what is left of about a 2.5 m tree) but found another two big holes right at the base of the trunk.  I poked a wire down and smothered holes with pyrethrum so hopefully it will survive.......we'll see.  This side gets shaded in winter which may be why I'm having problems with the trees.

Finally, this is the side labelled 3.  It gets sun all year round. I'll start from left to right.  Dwarf Wurtz Avocado (2013), Dwarf black mulberry (2013) - it's a little confused..started refruiting beginning of december (circled).  In my experience, they only ever fruited september - october.  Anyone know if this is normal for it to refruit?  Next is brown turkey fig (2013) and a kaffir lime that I got annoyed with and cut down.  It has reshooted so I'm going to try to keep it tiny this time.  Cumquat is next (2011) and then my multigraft citrus (lime, and who knows what else as only the lime fruits)

And there you have it folks, my fruit grove.  

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Comment by CHERYL SLAPP on February 18, 2014 at 15:24

Susan, your garden looks fantastic, hopefully some of my fruit trees will look as good.  

Elaine, thanks for the info on mulberry trees - I have one in a pot and will look at chopping it back - want to keep it relatively small and if chopping back will give extra fruiting thats even better.

Comment by Jake on January 25, 2014 at 10:57

Looking good!

Comment by Ania on January 23, 2014 at 10:29
Lovely post!! How interesting! Wicking beds certainly seem to be my solution to this crazy sunshine. Will def research this for the new bed we are planning once it stops being so hot (and my back heals). Great work! Thanks!
Comment by Susan on January 22, 2014 at 20:08

Thanks Christine :) I just wish they were all productive but most of them are quite young so I guess they can  be forgiven.

Comment by Christine Cox on January 22, 2014 at 8:01

How great was that blog thanks so much for sharing Makes us want to go and buy fruit tree species You have a great variety.

Comment by Elaine de Saxe on January 21, 2014 at 22:11

They were OK but nothing special. I'm putting a Brown Turkey Fig into the pot when I've renovated the soil.

Comment by Rob Walter on January 21, 2014 at 17:11

Interesting, Elaine. They'd want to be pretty delicious mulberries if you're only getting a dozen a year! Mine is a locally adapted mulberry that I nicked a cutting off.

Comment by Elaine de Saxe on January 20, 2014 at 16:31

Ah, I didn't get that there was a surviving graft. Mulberry in a pot - yes, been there done that. A 300L wicking bin - the Fig in an identical bin fruits well. We've got a total of maybe 3-4 dozen fruits over 3 years. You can guess that the pot is now awaiting another Fig to be planted in it.

Saw on TV a Mulberry in Melbourne regularly gave good crops 2-3 times per year with major prunes in between. That's what I took as my model. Cooler more suited to Mulberry culture in Melbourne? Could be, they are not tropical except for the Shahtoot but this was an 'English' Mulberry.

Comment by Rob Walter on January 20, 2014 at 16:02

Elaine, surely the pollinator is the other graft, given that there are two surviving. Don't underestimate that underperforming half of the tree, Susan.

On the mulberry fruiting, I have heard that you can get several crops per summer with brutal pruning. I gave it a go on my new pot-grown mulberry recently. It produced one fruit in spring (I told you it was new - about 30cm tall at the time) and then in late November I cut it back until there were no leaves remaining. It came back to life a few weeks later with a flower bud or two emerging with each new leaf bud. That gave me a dozen or so mulberries. I'm going to let it recover for a week or two more and then hit it again to get a third crop. I'm also keen to go and give some wild growing mulberries a hard time too. Note that the pruning is also to provide some shape to the new tree.

Comment by Elaine de Saxe on January 19, 2014 at 20:50

Thank you that report on the multi-grafts. From where did you buy them? Interesting that an Apple would fruit without a pollinator!

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