November 21, 2019–Kai Kai Farm

UPDATE: PowerPoint presentation: Kai-Kai Farm Growing Practices presentation (PDF).

Our speakers this month are Diane Cordeau and Carl Frost, owners of Kai-Kai Farm (map) east of Indiantown on SW Kanner Hwy.
The topic is “Kai-Kai Farm Growing Practices.”

Click the Kai-Kai farm (website) photo above for a delightful picture of Diane & Carl
by Food Photographer Libby Volgyes, Libby Vision Studio.

Our meetings include an educational program, a plant auction, plant raffle, and a tasting table of fruit in season. Please bring any extra fruit from your garden to share and give people a chance to experience new tastes and know what fruit they might want to grow.

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October 17, 2019–Mark Ritenour

Topic: Keeping fresh fruit “fresh” after harvest.

Dr. Mark Ritenour is a Professor and plant physiologist with the University of Florida since 1998 and is stationed at Indian River Research and Education Center in Fort Pierce, Florida. He specializes in the postharvest physiology and handling of fresh fruits and vegetables (primarily citrus) with Extension, research, and teaching programs focusing on improving pre- and postharvest practices to maximize delivered fresh fruit quality and ways to overcome potential market barriers (both domestic and international). Continue reading

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Martin County Events

PawPaw is a fruit tree in the Annona family (sugar apple, atemoya, cherimoya, custard apple). There will be a talk on the Florida native–Four-Petal PawPaw by Dr. Anne Cox, presented by the Martin Counter Chapter of the FL Native Plant Society. Details
Oct. 1, 6:30pm – 8pm
Dr. Cox will lead a field trip at Hobe Sound National Wildlife Refuge on Oct 5.

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September 19, 2019–Mike Luciano: grafting

Past TCRFC president Mike Luciano owner of Trees N More tropical fruit nursery (in Palm City just west of Stuart) will be grafting a hundred Carambola (Starfruit) trees this week. He will bring some to our meeting and demonstrate how to graft, first to the whole group then for smaller groups. Mike specializes in tropical fruit trees; you won’t find a better place to get your trees in the treasure coast.

UPDATE: Grafting success

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August 15, 2019–Bobbi Spencer

Bobbi Spencer, TCRFC Founder, Past President, and Master Gardener will give a presentation on the best tropical and subtropical fruit to grow here in the Treasure Coast.

Bring any of your extra fruit or edible treats for our tasting table, and plants or garden items for the raffle.
Members can bring up to 3 plants for the auction.

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July 18, 2019–Louise King: Mangos

Our speaker in July is Louise King, horticulturist at the Fruit & Spice Park in Homestead. The topic is Mangos and other Stars of the Park. This is Louise’s second visit. She also helped us get fruit for our Taste of the Tropics events this year and last.

The Fruit & Spice park, a 37 acre county park is a Florida treasure with an extensive collection of mature fruit trees, along with herb and vegetable gardens. Our club has visited the F&S Park as a group several times; it is worth a trip anytime, and especially during one of their many events.

Ms. King is a Redland resident and tropical fruit grower for more than 20 years. Louise has had a career dedicated to the enjoyment of the natural world. Prior to coming to the Fruit & Spice Park, Louise worked with the National Park Service, serving in Alaska, Idaho, Minnesota, and most recently at Everglades National Park and Biscayne National Park. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Botany from the University of Maryland.

BTW, this year’s Taste of the Tropics at the PSL Botanical garden had the best attendance ever! People got to try many unusual fruits including several varieties of mango, white sapote, jaboticaba, lychee, an excellent jackfruit from the F&S Park, plus Passion fruit-BBQ jackfruit and jackfruit curry. In addition, visitors were able to buy the fruit tree of their favorite tasting from club member Mike Luciano of Trees n’More nursery / Palm City right outside the pavilion. Many thanks to all the volunteers who helped make the day a great success.

Check the events page for 3 mango festivals coming up–at Fruit & Spice Park this Saturday 6/29, at Fairchild Gardens on July 13 & 14th, and closer to home at Erickson Farms on July 21.

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June 20, 2019 – Jeff Schorner; Al’s Family Farms

Update: Schedules change: Mike Meier of Ground Floor Farm had a Stuart city council meeting he had to attend in June; Jeff was unable to attend in May, so Larry Zimmerman took questions that month: Why did mangos do so poorly for many people this year? Partly due to the extended rainy weather during flowering which allowed anthracnose fungus to destroy the flowers. Usually a copper spray will stop the fungus, but when it rains every day, that washes the copper off. If it happened to your mangos you are not alone. Some varieties are more susceptible than others.

Jeff Schorner 1Our speaker in  May  June was Jeff Schorner from Al’s Family Farms in Fort Pierce at the corner of N. King’s Hwy and Angle Road. Jeff spoke about growing oranges. We were all glad he was able to speak. He really knows oranges, and yes, there is hope that citrus will grow in Florida again: his farm is proof of that. Jeff also brought his son Matthew, just returned from South Africa where he studied their citrus agricultural practices.

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