Nick's Island Tropical Fruit Orchard MaintenanceAs we get ready for the upcoming fruit season, I wanted to show you what we do in the off season to maintain the orchard.
Orchards and groves need to be properly maintained to keep them healthy and to maximize fruit production. This requires the trees to be pruned and thinned out when they get too big. We like to keep our trees between 12 and 15 feet tall. This allows a harvest without having to use ladders and other potentially dangerous equipment.
New growth is where the fruit is going to come from, so pruning the trees is an important maintenance function to promote new growth and therefore produce more fruit.
Our grove was planted in 2012 from 3gallon material. That means all the trees were basically three feet tall when they were planted. So, in the last nine years the trees have done wonderfully and grown to over 15 feet tall. It was time to bring the trees back down to a safe working height and thin the centers of each tree. This helps let the sun in and lets the air flow through the trees.
So, around October of last year, we had a professional “Topping” and “Hedging” company come in and “Top” and “Hedge” the orchard. Top means to cut the tops of the trees down to a desired level. We chose 12 feet. Hedging means cutting the sides of the trees. If you do not hedge the trees, they grow into each other and you can’t get a tractor or other necessary equipment down the aisles for whatever reason.
The machine we used is the same machine that is used in the orange groves here in Florida. It is called a TOL 1200. It does both topping and hedging.
We thought the machine was really cool and since most of you ask a lot of questions about the orchard, we decided to make a video and show you how we maintain the trees.
In summary, what you will see in the video are the trees being cut, new growth emerging, and lots and lots of flowers.
The video is just over eight minutes long. As I sit here today, six months later, you cannot tell the trees were cut.
I hope you enjoy the video.
Answering the question: How big does a lychee tree need to be in order to produce fruit?One of the most common questions we get about lychee trees is how old or how big does the tree need to be before it will produce fruit.
Here we show that "trees" propagated via "air-layering" can flower and produce fruit at a small size and within one year.
Tropical Trail 2021 02 16 1PM 49 34Brevard County Sheriff looking for tresspass person.
This guy ignores three "No Trespassing" signs and helps himself around the property. Anybody know who this person is?
Location: South Tropical Trail, 2/16/21 1:49:00 pm
Lychee Tree Propagation July 13th, 2020 Nick's Island Tropical FruitThis is how we propagate lychee trees. The technique is called "Air Layering." There are tons of videos about Air-Layering on YouTube.
This video shows how we do it. Some trees may be sold and some will be kept for our orchard replacements. We live in Florida, and often get hit by hurricanes the wreck our orchard. After problems with some purchased lychee trees, we will no longer buy lychee trees from anybody else.
Lychee Tree Nursery 2020This is our lychee tree nursery. The trees will stay here in the original pots until the roots fill out the container. Usually about 6- 8 months.
Ducks getting ready to cross road. 1 of 5Family of Florida "Mottled" ducks deciding to cross the road and cut through the orchard. Mama duck is leading the pack.
Florida Ducks looking for mangoes. 2 of 5Family of Florida "Mottled" ducks walking through orchard.
Family of Florida "Mottled" ducks walking through orchard. 3 of 5Florida Ducks looking for mangoes.
Family of Florida "Mottled" ducks walking through orchard. 4 of 5Florida Ducks looking for mangoes.
Florida Ducks looking for mangoes. 5 of 5Family of Florida "Mottled" ducks walking through orchard.
Carrie, Nam Doc Mai, Malika, CogshallWalking through orchard looking at different mango trees.
Golden nugget, fruit punch, Tebow, Keitt, Pink Valencia PrideMore mango trees in the orchard.