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Old 12-11-2009, 09:58 PM   #1 (permalink)
Been nuts, gone bananas
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Location: Isleton, Calif
Zone: 9b
Name: Harvey
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Default Harvey's Frost Report - various plants

No signs of warming trends here at my place. We had our latest frost I can ever recall on April 4th (3 weeks later than normal) and then the earliest frost I can remember on 11/16 (a month early). We've had 9 nights with frost with Tuesday night of this week being the worst. I don't know how cold we got. My digital thermometer quit working sometime after 9pm when it registered 27F. I put another thermometer outside which never read below 28F but I don't think that was right as it felt like it quit getting colder. I gave up hopes of my "mystery busy bee banana" sizing up any more this year shortly after midnight and got a ladder and cut the bunch off (a little over 100 fingers). Wunderground reports a station about 25 miles away when I look for historical data (Fairfield) and it reported 19F. I don't think we got that cold, though. The state's station out over the Sacramento River (50 feet from shore on a pier about 1 mile away) reported several hours down to 28F and I'm sure we got colder than that since that was right over a river that's a mile wide and very deep. I'm guessing we probably got into the low 20s.

Note: if you click once on the photo you will be taken to my gallery where you can click on the photo again for a higher resolution copy of the photo (quite a bit larger for the banyan).

Lord Howe Banyan (Ficus macrophylla subsp. columnaris) is reported as the most hardy banyan available and it looks pretty good, IMO. It's about 5' tall and was given to me by Jeff Earl who did not have room for it any longer. It has some leaves that are fried (especially ones that were older and laying horizontal). but it looks like it's a strong survivor.

Thomson Mango shows some frost damage, but not much. It's in a fairly sheltered area as it's going to be a challenge to grow this thing over time. It hasn't had great growth on it for a while and I think I need to add some calcium, but I'll hold off until spring.

Some Indian pomegranate varieties, grown from seeds germinated about 33-34 months ago. Ganesh and Mridula (Ganesh is one of the parent's used in breeding Mridula). Both are evergreen and have flower buds on them while my other poms have lost either all of their leaves or nearly all of their leaves. New growth on Mridula shows some frost damage.

Vermillion pitanga (Surinam Cherry) - no damage.

Kohala longan - I'm surprised at how much damage this shows as it hardly had any damage last year. I wish I had picked the fruit but it wasn't quite ripe.

Sweetheart lychee - I've got this covered with some aluminet shadecloth (extra I had over from my greenhouse) and that seems to help. Both it and the longan and planted close to my house but I guess I should do the same thing to the longan until they both get bigger.

For comparison, my bananas don't look too pretty right now but most will survive. I had hoped my shadehouse next to my shop would provide adequate protection for my young potted bananas but they got burnt to even though I left the window to my heated cookhouse open. I now wish I had put a fan at the window.


Last edited by harveyc : 12-11-2009 at 10:28 PM.
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