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Discussion in 'Citrus' started by Daniel Mosquin, May 10, 2007.
The garden received this email today:
Looks like Mr. Tafler was able to find such a person for his article which appeared in the May 12, 2007 edition of The Globe and Mail: Oranges and lemons, north of the 49th. Bob and Verna Duncan of Sidney are featured. I found this quote interesting:
Here is a related article also written by Mr. Tafler: Will B.C. be seen as California North?.
I think several people in this forum will be
instrumental in Citrus becoming more
mainstream in British Columbia. The
hard parts will be getting certain Citrus
to adjust and adapt to any climate change
diversity such as abrupt cooling after a
spell of unseasonal warming. This can
send some of the in ground Citrus into
chaos but they might be able to endure
it. Hard to say for sure but I am being
optimistic that in time through adaptation
they can better withstand the proposed
climatic mood swings.
The area of most concern still will not
be the warming it will still be the cool
daytime and nighttime temperatures
and the number of days that will be
cold with these trees in the ground.
The current day Citrus that are a
little more tolerant to cold may not
be the best available for commercial
use later on but I might be wrong on
that as there are other uses for them
other than for fresh eating.
At this time I find it doubtful that all
areas of Southwestern B.C. can
effectively grow a wide array of
Citrus in ground outdoors but can
grow Citrus in ground indoors. I
think Millet and Citrus Joe from the
CitrusNorth forum are two of the
more prominent people to talk to
in that regard. Growing Citrus
in ones home and move them
outdoors when they can is where
more people in the Pacific Northwest
will try to do more of but I just do
not see them advancing growing
seedlings from store bought fruit
as their answer. They are going
to have to invest in grafted forms
or if they can get them plants on
their own roots but for most Citrus
the current day selected seedling
rootstock allows for better overall
root growth and root stability either
in ground or grown in containers at
the present time.
We may hear of the success stories
of some trees outdoors but I am not
so certain these trees are in ground
year round but rather are in containers
that can be moved around to help
protect them from the coldest early
morning temperatures and for the
duration of the cold.
I think it is time to show this link in
this forum now. I believe what is
shown is reasonably self explanatory
but keep in mind the dates and the
historical perspective when all of
this was going on when Germany
and the Netherlands, among other
European countries, were much
warmer back then to allow them
to grow Citrus in ground outdoors
and grow these plants in large
portable containers to be moved
about when need be to protected
locations from the cold and the
more difficult aspect for the plant
to deal with and adapt to, the cold
CITRUS AND ORANGERIES
As to Will B.C. be seen as California North,
the answer is no, not until there has been
some dramatic improvement made in the
vigor as well as the cold tolerance of our
current day rootstocks and a change in
attitude towards what to do about pests
and diseases that will or may infect these
plants. The politics of the region, the
current day attitudes of people, along
with cheaper fresh market imports from
other countries makes the notion that the
Western part of Canada can compete
on a global Citrus growing stage rather
doubtful. That is not to say that Citrus
growers cannot sell their fruit locally
and to other parts of Canada and as
a result can take a bite out of the
Citrus import commodities coming
into Canada and the supermarkets
but will the politicians let it happen
and not be and act subservient to the
interests of the local growers and look
out for the overall welfare of the end
I think In the end it will not be a matter
of what is right or what is wrong for
people, it will come down to money
and who gets it that will determine
if the Citrus growers stand a chance
of having this vision of growing Citrus
on a global scale in 70 years time
succeed or not. I just do not feel at
this time that the mindset of the higher
ups (telcos as a good friend of mine
from Alberta, whom was chased out by
government regulations of being an
upstanding diversified Grain grower for
many years, likes to call them), changing
their attitudes and their ways of doing
things long enough to let it come to
fruition. Lets hope I am wrong about
A local enthusiast I spoke with has visions of planting groves inground, under glass year-round. I believe this is the method used by Millet. As you noted trees could be containerized and moved about but that may mean having to prune them for size which would greatly reduce the production of fruit. I was reminded of this by Millet's account of his tour of the University Of California's citrus variety collection documented in this thread in an external forum.
The trees depicted in the (CITRUS AND ORANGERIES) link appear to be relatively small; it makes me wonder how much fruit they would bear.
I think any discussion as to what could be in 70 year's time would be pure speculation as there are simply too many variables involved. Nevertheless it is interesting to consider the possibilities. If indeed the warming trend continues as suggested, I suspect there will be much change to society and in ways unforeseen.
I've felt for a while now that Citrus can be
grown in an atrium or in a greenhouse in
British Columbia and can be done in a
commercial manner. Almost 30 years ago
I mentioned to people in Iowa that they
could be growing fresh market Tomatoes
right in a greenhouse. We have access
to the technology that even someone in
Siberia can be growing Tahiti Limes
underground but growing Citrus that
require bee pollination or a pollinizer
tree will be a problem without some
control over atmospherics.
You are growing these indoors inside
a home and not being able to put them
outside. I look at what you are trying
to do to be the most difficult to achieve
success with but people in other parts
of Canada, such as Ontario were doing
it years ago inside their homes most of
the time to all of the time and were able
to produce enough fruit to make themselves
happy with their endeavors. You can
also be in a position to have fruit that
you will be rather pleased to have but
there are some drawbacks, limitations
to what you are doing as well but you
have already taken them into consideration
I think if we also think in terms of
growing Citrus in ground and in a
greenhouse in British Columbia that
some progressive people that can see
for themselves that it can be done with
success, that a reasonable conclusion
can be made later that others will also
join in and want to try their hand at
being successful at it.
I did not write or infer that several areas
of the Pacific Northwest do not have the
potential in time to grow lots of Citrus
indoors in some manner or fashion. I
think it will be a trendy kind of thing to
do as more and more people see and
read through this Citrus forum and
other online Citrus forums how others
have been able to do it, pull it off in
some cases. It just requires a little
interest and initiative.
I think what Mr. Tafler was really
signaling is that with the successes
of others that realize that Citrus can
be grown in B.C. that other people
and perhaps some of the institutions
wanting to grow Citrus in B.C. may
have the ability to expand almost
exponentially thanks to the efforts
of a few people that have been and/or
are growing these plants, along with
others in this forum that are doing
more than just a passing attempt now
to grow these plants. Once a few more
people have some successes growing
these plants in the ground, in the home,
in a greenhouse and in an atrium watch
what will happen soon afterwards as
these plants gain more popularity.
There will be several people that will
have interest and will want to be growing
these plants in B.C. and other areas of
Canada as well. Then in time there
may not be any need to buy some of
the current day misnamed fruit coming
in from one principal area but only
bring in the fruit that is or has been
historically popular that may have a
problem growing in Canada and do
much of the growing of the fresh
eating Citrus yourselves. Iâ€™d be a
little euphoric about the prospects
of this happening also.
The way some of our dwarfing rootstocks
have been keeping some of the Citrus down
to size that I think growing dwarf forms such
as grafted or budded onto Flying Dragon and
perhaps Cuban and selected trifoliate form
rootstocks and other forms as well, have
tremendous potential for both the home
grower and the smaller scale commercial
grower. I think 10-12 foot ceilings will
be ample. We also have to think in terms
of how we prune these trees as a topping
of the tree every now and then can cause a
reduction in fruit in practice but pinching
back some of the top growth every year
may not have the same reductions. There
is a huge difference between pruning the
top back a foot or more and pinching or
a light trimming back the top back to three
inches all the way across the top. We still
will get ample flowering in the middle to
the upper portions of the trees is what
we've seen on our in ground Citrus that
we may prune the tops to better shape
the trees every three to four years.
Another thing to consider is that plants
in the ground can be pruned back and
still bear a decent crop whereas trees
grown in containers especially housed
under shade cloth can have tremendous
reduction in the trees fruiting ability
once they have their tops either pinched
back or are top pruned.
As for UCR, they should expect yield
reductions by how they fertilize their
plants with direct injections with every
watering. They have to cut back the top
growth to allow for new root growth that
they have effectively weakened and to
some extent have chemically pruned
off in a restricted space container. The
area of concern is what happens when
those trees are planted in the ground
due to their practices that they are more
likely going to "just sit there" in the
ground for up to three years, perhaps
longer in some isolated cases and
have little to next to nothing for allover
new growth. The root initiation has
been stymied by them and then when
the plant is out in the ground the roots
will have to do more work than they
are capable of doing, thus the entire
plant can be in peril to an invader or
to a pathogen until they do get some
new root growth and later on because
of it new shoot growth. Should they
want to plant those trees they will also
want to top them soon after planting
to trigger the roots to grow so they
wonâ€™t just sit in the ground. The
eventual crop has to be put on the
backburner until these plants start to
grow and adapt to their new locations.
I think at the time the artist renditions
of the trees that it did not matter to
people that the fruit may have seemed
small in size by comparison to the fruit
on the actual trees. Then again that
many years ago much of the Oranges
were smaller in size than many of them
.... or perhaps even more significantly, the under-stated impact of climate change, i.e. the increased frequency of extreme warm and cold temperature events (the low temperature events being the deciding factor in this case, of course).
I don't think "global warming" will ever allow for commercial citrus fruit growing in BC simply because climate models predict that the low temperatures will get lower and all time low temperature records will be more common during the winter months. This will kill off any in ground citrus tress that are attempted to be grown without protection.
More exposure for the Duncans in the May 17, 2007 edition of The Vancouver Sun: B.C. climate change has tropical fruits thriving.
Article in the May 26, 2008 edition of The Vancouver Sun: Mediterranean garden grows in warming Victoria.
From lemons to loquats: A surprisingly fruitful B.C. orchard.
Sorry it is probably later than you need but I have been growing all types of citrus in B.C. and using the Orangerie method, a double garage with the back South facing wall replaced with windows and have had very successful results. I bring any truly tropical plants into my cool 6 to 12 degree celcius sunroom over the winter and leave my large cold hardy trees out in the Separate Garage (Orangerie) over the winter. They are provided with a small ceramic heater for when the temperature drops below freezing only. They are the more cold tolerant citrus and in general the temperature hovers around 0 to - 1 c over the coldest times when it is -14 to- 16 outside.
Citrus do not drop their fruit unless the temperature goes down below -3c.
I have had good success with the following cold hardy varieties outside.
OUTSIDE ORANGERIE Above 0 to - 6 c at the lowest normally
Lemon (Myer and Eureka..marginal to -6 c)
Mandarins (Owari and Kinnow,Gold nugget, Kishu -9 c)
Nova Tangelo ..Very productive, Fruits alternate years, Very sweet fruit even in lower winter light of British Columbia , Canada .
Sweet oranges(Trovita ,Washington,Valencia,Trovita,Midknight,Cara Cara-variegated above -9 c)
Blood oranges (Moro,Seville above -9 c)
Yuzu Ichandarin (Lemon Hybrid..very hardy -10c hardy)
Citrumello (Durstan...Grapefruit hybrid...-12c hardy)
Trifoliate Oranges (Dwarf Flying Dragon and Large flowered rootstock ...full grown tree survives outside year round -25 to -30 c hardy)
INSIDE SUNROOM (cool 5 - 12 c)
Buddas' Hand (no fruit.. yet flowers well. Cool sensitive.likes above 10 c)
Indonesian lime (cold sensitive..likes above 10c or no fruit)
Mexican lime (key lime..Cold sensitive ...likes above 10c or no fruit)
Bears Lime (less cold sensitive and produces fruit readily in cooler climate..B.C.)
Limequat(Eustice..Tavares more productive.Cold hardiest Lime.Fruits well in cool B.C.)
Pummelo Hybrid (Oroblanco..grapefruit taste.Very sweet,less heat to ripen,above 5 c)
Kumquat (cold hardy but produces no fruit if not above 12 c)
Calamondin (variegated or green, fruit and flowers well small size lemon substitute)
Cold hardy types to aquire...these would be Ideal for B.C.
(Hardy from Kumquat parentage... usually very productive)
Limequat- Tavares ,very productive
Citrangequat-Macciaroli and Thomasville (edible vs others non-edible)
Kumquat- Miewa, Best flavour fresh eating
Cold hardier types for Orangerie
Mars Orange (sweet and natural dwarf due to consistant fruit production, heavy crops)
Bouquet de Fleurs - sour orange ,fragrance not fruit,Gardenia
Chinotto orange variegated- small leaves, full of small edible sour fruit year round
Myrtifolia orange- many flowers year round..few fruit...1/3 sized leaves good dwarf
Flying dragon and Trifoliate orange... Variegated forms
Nansho Daidai (citrus Taiwanica cold hardy)
Pong Koa honey Mandarin (cold hardy)
Lang Huang Kat Mandarin (cold hardy)
Warm Sunroom ... RARE types
Indio Mandarinquat much larger fruit on this Kumquat x mandarin x orange. Eat sweet peel with tart flesh.
Australian Fingerlime (Microcitrus Austrilasica)..Australian citrus caviar..warm climate, Lemon like flavour + turpentine-esque aftertaste .
Sidney Hybrid (Microcitrus australias x australasicaGeen elongated fruit acidic and seedless .Australian round lime cross one finger lime. New growth purple ,red buds, spicy odour. Green caviar
Faustrimedin and Faustrime (HYBRIDs)..Australian citrus caviar...vesicles used in fine cusine on food...cold hardier hybrid for cooler climates, small fruits...various colours eg: champagne, newly developed in Florida
I hope this is a reasonable overview for northern gardeners and helps with growing them here up north.
p.s. I will be offering newly grafted trees in the summer of 2011 on cold hardy, winter dormancy inducing rootstocks of some trees in my first two columns above.
Trifoliate orange and naturally dwarfing "flying dragon" rootstock are the best choice for northern growers.
Flying Dragon is a beautiful cold hardy twisted outdoor selection on it's own. It grows slowly to only 10 feet here in British columbia with colourful fall/winter yellow/orange fruits.
Hi I am from Victoria but live in Italy now and our climate is much the same as Victoria. Today I bought a lemon and kumquat tree and the gardener who sold them also grows them in Sicily. He said leaf drop is common and you must prune 4 times a year to stimulate new active growth of leaves and flowers. This is opposite to what I have read here but he lopped off a few long branches of these young trees (2yr) and said to do it again in 3 months. If you have ever seen Sicily for lemons and orange groves then you will know he knows what he is talking about. I am trying it this year. Last year I lost both trees slowly with no new leaves growing all year
Wondering if you are parting with some citrus stock. I am looking for some citus elements to add to my new sunroom. Dwarf rootstock preferably.
Tiny Tom's Tangerine Farm is located in Delta, BC and he's got lots of different types & sizes of citrus trees available. Going there to pick up a calamansi tree or two, plus whatever else catches my fancy.
Very nice guy to talk to. Very enthusiastic about growing citrus in Canada so I'm going over there to pick his brain as soon as he has time.
Thanks for the update. I'm glad Tom's back; he disappeared for awhile.
Just came back from Tiny Tom's and his citrus farm is amazing. Just the sheer number & variety of citrus & other exotic trees & plants in the greenhouse is mind-boggling. I picked up a large calamansi & small one, as well as some lemongrass. He's even going to teach me how to graft different species onto a single rootstock in the next couple of weeks. Learning from pro like Tom whose been growing citrus in BC for decades will be a real honour and experience. Very much looking forward to his grafting lessons. Very generous guy & a pleasure to deal with.