Review Detail

Fruit Trees M Mark May 05, 2016 10158
Adore it
Overall rating 
 
4.8
Easy to Grow? 
 
4.0
Taste 
 
5.0
Disease & Pest Resistance 
 
5.0
Productivity 
 
5.0
Bought this April 2017, and am getting stuck into the first ripe fruits March 2019. They are stunningly delicious, quite possibly the best fruit I've ever eaten. For the best feed, let them fall off the bush. I just check around the pot every morning and evening, and scoff down what I find. Can't say how long they last once ripe, as I eat them!

I bought mine labelled as the strawberry version of the cherry guava, but it's actually the gold. Can't say I'm disappointed because the fruit really is the best thing I've ever eaten. There's almost no tartness to them, sweet- but only just enough to make them tasty, just juicy and incredibly flavourful, like the loveliest tropical juice you've ever sipped at. No insipid aftertaste or gummy feel. It's hard to describe the lovely smell and taste- a little citrus, a little pineapple, maybe. One simply thinks 'fruity' at the smell! The seeds are few and not hard at all, and I've never spat them out- they're completely unnoticeable when eating. Small fruit- only about 4cm across, tops, but no loss through peeling or seeds, as you eat the whole thing, and still satisfying to eat one. I really can say, they've replaced mulberries as my favourite fruit. I will be buying several more of these, now.

I've been told to always split them open to check for maggots, but they apparently only ripen when cooler weather sets in, and we've had an early patch of cool, so they have done so, but usually fruit fly is not an issue when weather cools, here. I'd net them after cooling if you're expecting more warm or if fruit fly persists in autumn, but I don't think that's going to give me any problems. 

The plant starts out a little fussy. I potted it up in my standard fruit tree mix, compost and coir (soaked in seaweed, liquid fish emulsion, a touch of liquid gypsum, worm tea, and molasses), blood and bone, and some potash, and I think this one got a tiny handful of organic dynamic lifter pellets. Mulched with sugar cane mulch, and let be. I found it did not grow at all for the first year, and developed a red rusty looking blotch to the leaves that never matched up to any research I did on pests, diseases, and deficiencies. Was a bit befuddled, but I believe in systems that take care of themselves, so I didn't bother with any control methods. Instead, I gave it a bigger pot and a friend -a geranium; the friend helps hold water in the larger pot until the tree roots spread- for better access to water in our hot, dry, muggy, confounding subtropical heat, and just gave it occasional liquid seasol and left it alone.

Just as I was considering turfing it -as my plot is limited, and I need productive plants that thrive- it suddenly, this last spring, just took off. Tripled in size (to about 50+cm tall, now, but quite wide and bushy, from it's spindly little three branch 15cm), put on so much bushy, glossy green growth, and then put on flowers, and every single flower set fruit. The native (tiny stingless and blue banded) and european bees loved them, and the hover flies never stopped coming! They have a long ripening time, and it's only just now in the start of March 2019 that they are ripening, almost eight months since flowering, very comparable to citrus. Completely worth the wait, though, as they are amazeballs. Have I mentioned that the fruit is stunning? I was especially pleased with the fruit as I have a very strict watering policy in my yard, with winter watering being only what comes into the waste buckets in the kitchen sink and the shower, and spring/summer watering being getting the hose out only every second/third day. We have EXCEPTIONALLY limited rain water where I live. Most storms and showers miss us completely- I find rain tanks and buckets basically useless here. Despite this restriction, the fruit is still beautifully juicy.  

I plant to give it a good top dressing of rotted sheep manure and compost after it's done its fruiting, but keep with the standard of occasional seaweed, fish, worm tea and maybe some gypsum, with a top dressing of blood and bone twice a year, and a yearly application of lime/dolomite. I'm considering building cages for them as well- they can be exceptionally weedy in a very bad way in our Brisbane bushland, and while the kookaburras and magpies drive off all the other fruit eating birds here, and fruit bats don't seem to bother us, possums can be a bit of a nightmare. So far they've just stuck to stripping my poor lemons and limes bare, but I'd resent sharing the fruits of my beautiful guavas, especially if I was harming my local bushland as well. Consider nets, my friends!

Very impressed with this one for Brisbane. I'll be sacrificing quite a few pots and prime growing spots for more of these!

Plant Knowledge Base

I grow/have grown this plant

Where is this plant growing?

In Container

What is your Climate?

Organically Grown?

Yes

Fertilisers, Organics, or Other Supplements Used

Seaweed, Liquid Fish, Molasses

Pros & Cons

Pros
Amazing fruit
Early producer- we only had to wait a year and a half
Pest resistant
Low care- plant, mulch, and (almost)forget
REALLY amazing fruit
Ripens a few fruit at a time, despite the flowers setting fruit all at once
Not a terribly greedy feeder- a bit of liquid nosh every once in a while, and a yearly top dressing of whatever compost on hand and its happy
Pretty drought tolerant- fruit still sets and holds with restricted watering
Is a host plant for lacewing eggs in my yard
Fruit holds well even through storms and high winds
REALLY AMAZING FRUIT
Cons
Can be weedy in Australia- net tree if bats, possums, or fruit eating birds are an issue in your area
Slow starter- takes a good year or so to take off
Can be a target for pests and disease the first year while it settles in- keep up the seaweed emulsion and regular water for it to settle in and look after itself.
Long ripening time

Would You Grow this Plant Again?

Yes

If you purchased plant online - where?

Owner's reply

Thank you!

AM
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March 18, 2019
Thank you for this comprehensive review! I'm genuinely wrapped to see more people like yourself using our review feature here on SSM - I really do appreciate it! Cheers, Mark
M
Mark
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