Monday, December 6, 2010

The Consequences of Being Cold

The skies are gorgeous and the temps refreshing, but get ready to kiss your blooms goodbye. Only a few of my mango trees are making spectacles of themselves at the moment, but most of those blooms will be doomed by morning. Supposedly temperatures below 42 degrees kill mango flowers. Fortunately the affected trees will bloom again in a few months. Watering well before the cold decreases damage.

Monday, November 29, 2010


Avocados and a few Carambola are the only edibles at the moment.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Fall Chores

One always hopes for a sudden burst of energy immediately after picking the last fruit of the season. In odd moments, I have visions of placing the last mango in the cart and lunging for a saw in the same motion. Somehow the requisite burst didn't happen this year, but after several concerted efforts over many weeks, most of our trees are trimmed. With any luck, the inevitable new growth will have a chance to harden before cold weather hits.

Friday, October 15, 2010

What You Can Buy Now

Carambola and Atemoya are still available. We have Jak fruit hanging on the trees, but last time I checked none was ripe.
Remember, we have many varieties of mango trees for sale, as well as many other kinds of tropical fruit trees.

Saturday: 9 - noon

Friday, October 8, 2010

Fruit for sale tomorrow

one small Jak Fruit
....a minimalist report

Friday, October 1, 2010

Mangos in October!

We happen to have some Keitt mangos to sell tomorrow. Most will be ripe or almost ripe. These really are the last ones of the season!

Saturday morning we will also have longans, carambola, and atemoya.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Last Week for Mangos

The squirrels were becoming overly enthusiastic in their enjoyment of our mangos, so I picked virtually all the remaining fruit. The good news is this Saturday we will have a nice supply of Keitt mangos in various stages of ripeness. The bad news is... yeah, you already figured out the bad news. But hey, there's always next season.

In addition to Keitt mangos and a few Beverly mangos, we will have Longans, some Atemoya and Carambola.

Thursday, September 16, 2010


We will have some mangos on Saturday morning... mostly Keitts with a few Beverly.

I just picked a very nice jak fruit. If you are interested, call 278-7754 today or tomorrow, or just come by Saturday morning.

Also, we still have longans, and perhaps a few carambola and sugar apples.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Open for a short time on Labor Day

In addition to being open 5-6:30 pm on Tuesday, September 7, we will be open 5-6 pm on Monday, September 6.

Our current mango varieties include Keitt, Kent, Beverly and Palmer. We also have a lot of longans.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Our Schedule for the next 2 weeks

Thanks to all who came yesterday afternoon!
We now have far fewer ripe mangos than we did yesterday. However, I have picked a lot of fruit that should be ripe over the weekend. Remember... mangos are a great addition to holiday cookouts (etc., etc.).

Our schedule for the next two weeks is:
Thursday, September 2 ...... 5-6:30 pm
Saturday, September 4 ...... 9 am-noon
Tuesday, September 7 ....... 5-6:30 pm
Saturday, September 11 .... 9 am-noon
Thursday, September 16 .... 5-6:30 pm
(Please note that we are not open every Tuesday and Thursday.)

Also on the subject of fruit sales, we guarantee all of our fruit. Sometimes a fruit looks good, but is disappointing. Please tell us if this ever happens, so that we can replace your fruit the next time you stop by.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Fruit Sales Tomorrow!

The medfly quarantine is ending!
We will sell mangos and other fruit 5-6pm tomorrow, September 1.

We have a good supply of ripe and green mangos of several varieties. Also available are longans, carambola, one small jak fruit, and sugar apples.

Please spread the word.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Selling Soon

The USDA/DPI are planning a press release on Wednesday (Sept 1) morning. They anticipate that the quarantine will be lifted at that time. If the quarantine is lifted on Wednesday, we will open this week only Wednesday afternoon 5:00-6:00, Thursday morning 9:00-10:00, and Thursday afternoon 5:00-6:00. Of course we will also be open Saturday morning.

Friday, August 27, 2010

The Last Peel?

Hopefully tomorrow will be the last Saturday Morning Mango Peel. (The quarantine is supposed to be over in this area on Thursday, September 2.) At the moment we have a lot of mangos, longans, carambola, jak fruit and sugar apples. Our current mango varieties available include Kent, Petegrew, Palmer, Valencia Pride, and Mallika.

We will be open 9 am to noon. If possible, please bring your own knife.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Thank You!

Thanks to all the people who showed up Saturday morning to cut up mangos!
Next Saturday should be the last time to cut up fruit on our property. Supposedly on September 2 we will be able to sell the whole fruit, and we will definitely be open early in the morning and in the late afternoon on that day. Yes, we will still have mangos, and we will also have carabola, sugar apple, and maybe some jak fruit and longans.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Saturday Morning Mango Bee

The end of the mango-cut-up season is fast approaching. We should have some kind of celebration on the day we finally move our picnic table out of the breezeway, but for now we will use it for a couple more sessions of mango cutting. If all goes as planned, we will be able to sell whole fruit starting September 2. Stop by tomorrow morning to enjoy the excellent varieties we have now. In twelve days the available varieties will be quite different, and the supply limited.

Fortunately our jak fruit season is late this year, so we should also have several jak fruit after the quarantine is lifted.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Now for some real work

Most varieties of mango trees have finished fruiting for the season. Beverly, Palmer, Petegrew, Neelum and Keitt will be our last varieties this year, and will probably be available after the quarantine is lifted. I just started to pick Kent, but the mangos on those trees look like they will all ripen within the next two weeks. Valencia Pride might be available for about another week.

So what happens every year after the fruit is picked?
Another project at the end of a long mango season is not a welcome thing, but the work now saves lots of time down the road.
My goals for pruning include keeping the trees small, improving air circulation and light penetration, encouraging optimal branching, and preparing the trees for fruiting next year.
This weekend we pruned about a third of the mango trees, and I am very tired.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

With Fond Thoughts of the USDA and DPI

Since we have more mangos than time, we try to limit what we bring in the house for baking and freezing, etc. Even so, I threw out 4 buckets of overripe fruit today. I'm pretty sure I'll be able to keep up with the fruit once I give up sleep. But for now I even dream about mangos.

This week I picked the first Kent, Keitt and Beverly mangos. The Valencia Prides and Carries will last another week or so. Several other varieties are almost finished fruiting. Ealier today I noticed our first jak fruit ripening, and we have carambola and sugar apples now also. It's likely that all will be available this Saturday morning for tasting and/or cutting up.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Another Newspaper Article

While I was out of town last week, this article appeared:

Storm clouds are rolling in, so I'll dash outside to take advantage of the relative coolth. Thoughts on the medfly, the USDA, and tropical fruit can wait.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Personal Preferences in the Land of Mangos

Some might think I put too much mango in my mango bread, but I love it when it borders on mango bread pudding. As you might have noticed in the recipe notes, I often don't add any sugar ...just go with the sweetness of the mangos. (If you're using store-bought mangos, this modification probably won't work.) Yesterday's batch didn't have added sugar, but had tons of 'Dot' mangos, and pecans mixed in with the typical walnuts (because I ran short on walnuts). I thought the combination was extraordinary.

In the past two days I've picked lots of gorgeous Dot, Bailey's Marvel, Valencia Pride, Carrie, and Spirit of '76 mangos. We also have some Cushman, Haden, Mallika, Florigon, Zebda, Baptiste, Lemon Meringue, Pickering, Duncan, Fairchild, Mulgoba, Tommy Atkins, Irwin, Van Dyke, Choc-anon, Graham, Bombay, Alphonso, and Gary ...and we still haven't started picking Beverly, Neelum, Kent and Keitt.

We sure hope lots of people show up Saturday morning, knives in hand, to peel and cut mangos!
Sample whatever you want, and peel as much as you can. We'll weigh the finished product and charge you $2 per pound.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Mountains of Mangos

A few days back I strained some muscles carrying a rather large rock. Even injured I had more energy for rocks then than I do today for fruit. But this morning I picked mangos. Old habits. Perhaps this afternoon or evening energy will surface and I will cut and freeze mangos... maybe even make mango bread. (Click on "Recipes" for recipe.) Picking up rotting fruit will have to wait for an entirely different level of ambition.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Life in the Quarantine Zone

Early Saturday morning two DPI people stopped by with news. If no medflies show up in the area, the quarantine will be lifted on September 2.

With luck we still might have 2-3 varieties of mango in September ...maybe even jak fruit. A lot can happen in 5 weeks, but we hope for at least a couple weeks when we are permitted to sell fresh fruit AND have fruit to sell.

Several people showed up to slice and freeze mangos yesterday. What began as a way to take mangos home while under quarantine restrictions became a social experience. In addition to tasting many varieties and having fruit to thaw when needed, people who otherwise would have never met shared experience, techniques and enthusiasm for the fruit. Cutting fruit in our breezeway worked out well, and we will set up for that every Saturday morning until the end of the quarantine or until we no longer have mangos to sell.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Ripening Fruit

Our 'Haden' trees, especially the ones next to the street, are full of large yellow mangos heavily blushed with red. Many people notice them and stop. Not only are mangos are the ultimate fruit, but they also are or should be an essential summer experience for everyone in South Florida. A few minutes ago I told two sets of people that, because of one fly found three miles from here, I cannot sell or give away any fruit. The Spanish-speaking man did not understand at all. English is my first language and I have spent hours researching the medfly, and I do not understand either.

But the focus of the day has been preparing for Saturday's paring. Green mangos are in our garage so that the warmth can speed their ripening. Our (air-conditioned) kitchen is filled with boxes and bags of about 15 varieties of ripe and nearly ripe fruit. This morning we set up a table in the breezeway and figured out a few things to make cutting and peeling easier and more enjoyable. With any luck the rain will have cleared out by Saturday morning, but we will be open from 9 am to noon ...rain or shine.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Mangos Mangos Everywhere (B.Y.O.K.)

The bounty is plentiful, and we now have a plan whereby we can sell our mangos.

This Saturday morning we will set up a table or two for mango peeling and cutting. Bring your favorite knife, buy the fruit you would like to freeze (and/or consume on the property), cut it up, and put it in a Ziploc bag with your name on it. We will put it in our chest freezer. A couple days later you can pick it up and save it in your own freezer for the winter.

I freeze mangos every year and thaw a bag every time we have a special guest (who happened to have missed mango season). It is always a treat, and certainly beats the heck out of any store-bought mango. I also dice a few bags of mangos to freeze and use later in the year for mango bread.

Most varieties that are ripe now are excellent to freeze ...including Bailey's Marvel, Fairchild, Carrie, Florigon, Valencia Pride, Tommy Atkins, Van Dyke, Irwin, Pim Seng Mun, and lots of Haden. We also have Graham, Bombay, Dwarf Hawaiian and Lemon Meringue, but these four varieties I do not recommend freezing.

Monday, July 19, 2010

The Quarantine, Part I

The USDA and DPI (Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Plant Industry) have decreed that plants and fruit cannot leave our property. Unfortunately these extreme measures are hitting at the peak of mango season. In the past week I've peeled hundreds of pounds of mangos, made many batches of mango bread, and had friends make enormous amounts of chutney. But more mangos ripen daily. Every time I meet with USDA/DPI people I ask to be able to sell fruit to people who live in the quarantine zone, which is similar to what citrus producers were allowed to do when under quarantine. Instead of easing restrictions, they say we must wait for the quarantine to be lifted in our area, which they expect to happen in about 76 days.

Here's a map of the area that's affected by the medfly quarantine.

and another article on the medfly in Palm Beach County