Saturday, August 6, 2011

Dreaming of Tasty Tropical Fruit Trees At Home (!)

I live in a zone 5 gardening area of upstate NY.  There is no way i am going to grow coffee, figs, lemons, lives, cinnamon, avocado or any other tropical plant outdoors here.  (I can't even grow...sigh....crepe myrtles or camillas.)

However, I recently ran across a book called "Growing Tasty Tropical Plants * 
*in any home, anywhere" by Laurelynn G. Martin and Byron E. Martin.

Sounds great, doesn't it.

But not so fast.

It's a very enjoyable book, and some of these plants will be in my daydreams.  I don't know how many will be actually in my house, which (alas) does not have much in the way of full sun windows.

Nor does it have, in the winter, high humidity.

And, from a couple of experiences, my plants (I learned the hard way with kalanchoes) can very easily get mealybugs.

Now true, I have the obligatory avocado tree growing in a pot in my back yard, started some years ago from a pit buried in peat, and put in the refrigerator (I read this was an alternate way of germination.)  And, from time to time, I've kept a pineapple top alive - of course, I've never gotten a pineapple out of the experience.

But, a local nursery sells coffee plants - and they are attractive.  And, according to this book "Coffee plants adapt well to the low light and low humidity typical of home environments.  Flowers and fruits appear when the plant is young...Under ideal growing conditions, this can happen in less than a year."

Not that I am going to get a supply of coffee from a plant, but it does sound like something I would want to see in the winter.

And, my spouse is eager to have a supply of Meyer Lemons.

So...should I make this into a new project?
Have any of my readers grown these tropical fruiting plants?  If so, I would love to hear about your experiences.

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