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Winter Harvest

Winter Harvest © Andor (3)

This Year was My second mandarin orange harvest. Eleven times more fruit than last year’s haul, which was one orange.  The tree that gave Me that orange, gave three this year, in an escalating size range of two, to nearly four inches in diameter. They were VERY sweet and not particularly acidic. The largest one however was quite bland in flavor, I think I picked it too late? My other satsuma tree gave Me eight little oranges. I picked them in varying lengths of time after turning bright orange. Today, I picked the last five, about a month later than I think I should have. Quite a day, plucking fresh oranges from a tree when it is 7 degrees(F) outside..

Owari Satsuma Mandarins © Andor

The fruits from this tree were far more acidic and powerful in flavor, but not as sweet as the ones from it’s sister. They are the same age and from the same source, but I planted them in very different soil mixtures, to see what would work better. I can only assume that this, is what caused such dramatic variation in the experience delivered to My taste buds.

Having also plucked the last meyer lemon, there is just one fruit left growing in My tropical Minnesotan attic jungle. It is the first grapefruit from My nearly six year old ruby red tree.

Ruby Red Grapefruit © Andor

There is nothing like freshly harvested food. It has been great to experience the cycle of these trees and of course, reap the rewards! I can’t wait to see what I get next year.


Owari Satsuma Mandarin Tree Blossom


Back for More? I Guess!

A while back, I started buying fruit trees. It started with a Dwarf Fig, Carmine Jewel Cherry and some Blueberries. Rapidly followed by a plethora of Citrus varieties! This being Minnesota, I put the Cherry and Blueberry Plants in the ground and planted everything else in pots to bring in for the winter. Oddly enough, winter never REALLY showed up this year, which left my Cherry and Blueberries exposed. Sadly, they were eaten down to stubs at ground level by some ravenous rabbit-like creature! Not sure if they will grow back, but for fledgeling deciduous trees/shrubs in this kind of winter, I’m not sure they would take anyways… Time will tell I guess.

On the other hand, thus far, the Fig tree has defied deaths calling. Indoors, amongst the Citrus trees. My neighbors probably think that I’m growing other things in the attic from the artificial sun that’s beaming out of all the windows in the evenings.

For now there are 10 Citrus trees in My ‘Tropical Minnesotan Attic Jungle’ . 2 Keiffer Lime trees that are 2 and 4 years old, the older of which is now flowering for the first time. 2 Moro Blood Orange Trees which are also 2 and 4 years old. 2 and 3 year Mexican Sweet Limes, that, I’m not doing justice to, they’re yellowing and sad looking. 2, 5 year old Owari Satsuma Mandarins, one of which gave Me My very 1st orange this past December!

There is also a 3rd year Meyer Lemon that is growing 9 little lemons for the 1st time, unlike all the others, the lemon gives TWICE a year, instead of just once.. I’m struggling a bit keeping the lemon tree happy tho. Lastly is the 5 year old Ruby Red Grapefruit tree, which I almost slayed with water when I got it..

I swear, CITRUS TREES HATE WATER!! I learned this as I watched My beloved grapefruit tree drop 2/3rds to 3/4ths of it’s leaves before I re-potted it in a better draining soil mix. It’s bouncing back and is currently covered with wonderfully aromatic blossoms.

December to February is Bloom season for all citrus that I’m aware of, and what a great time to have an indoor forest! The house is graced with a really nice conglomerate of scents from the numerous varieties of fruits being spawned.

I’ve certainly got more trees than I need, but I’ll be acquiring more this spring! I plan on getting Trovita Oranges and Oroblanco Grapefruits. Hopefully, that will satiate My ‘need’ for citrus trees. .. … Because I feel the ‘need’ to dive into nut trees, cherry trees, apple trees and, well, clearly I need to move out of the city!