Sparkleberry: The wild blueberry cousin that supplies me with antioxidants all winter

In winter, one of the fruits I find in abundance here in North Florida is sparkleberry (Vaccinium arboreum), a native cousin of blueberry which contains many of the same health-promoting purple anthocyanin pigments as blueberry. They grow wild here, and I can harvest all I want for free. Sparkleberries are native all over Southeastern North … More Sparkleberry: The wild blueberry cousin that supplies me with antioxidants all winter

I’m converting sour plum trees into sweet plum trees by grafting

My property here in North Florida has lots of wild plum trees that grow like weeds and make huge quantities of fruit, but the fruits on these wild trees are sour and unpleasant-tasting. For the last several years, I’ve been experimenting with a technique to convert them into sweet-fruited plum varieties: each spring, I graft … More I’m converting sour plum trees into sweet plum trees by grafting

I just got a plant of ‘Silas Woods’, the dwarf, everbearing sapodilla

I’ve been lusting after the ‘Silas Woods’ sapodilla, a dwarf, ever-bearing form of this tropical fruit, ever since I first heard of it. I finally got a plant of this variety! Gonna plant this one in the ground in my tropical fruit greenhouse, so I’ll hopefully be eating fresh-off-the-tree sapodillas for much of the year. … More I just got a plant of ‘Silas Woods’, the dwarf, everbearing sapodilla

Limequat: A Delicious Type of Citrus, And The Fruit Geek Who Created It

What do you get when you cross the heavenly-tasting, juicy, sour, key lime with the frost-tolerant, sweet-peel kumquat fruit? You get limequat, a delicious, juicy, aromatic, sour, lime-like fruit which has the bonus of having an edible peel. Not only that, but this is a tree which can fruit in areas too cold for pure … More Limequat: A Delicious Type of Citrus, And The Fruit Geek Who Created It

I got to taste a kind of fruit that dinosaurs ate

I recently encountered a fruit I’d never seen or heard of before: the finger-sop (Meiogyne cylindrica), native to Australia. The thing about the fruit that instantly impressed me was how much it resembled our native North American pawpaws (Asimina species), with one striking difference – instead of a greenish-yellow skin, the skin of finger-sop is … More I got to taste a kind of fruit that dinosaurs ate

Fig-Grafting Update: Progress with Ficus pumila

Time for a long-overdue update on my project to explore potentially nematode-resistant fig rootstocks. The project hasn’t progressed as fast as I would have liked, but I do have some potentially promising results with the Ficus species I rated as a “wildcard” in my first post on this topic: creeping fig, Ficus pumila. To recap, … More Fig-Grafting Update: Progress with Ficus pumila

In Search Of Nematode-Resistant Fig Rootstocks – Progress Report 1

Figs are a great fruit that’s mostly well-adapted to the south-eastern US, but they’ve got a major problem limiting them in our area: root-knot nematodes. Many of our soils are full of these microscopic parasitic worms that burrow into the roots of fig trees, sucking sap and impairing the roots’ ability to pull water and … More In Search Of Nematode-Resistant Fig Rootstocks – Progress Report 1