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*knock on wood*

Assuming we end up closing in August, I have wanted a banana tree since I moved to Houston in '03.

Are there any fruit bearing care-free trees for Houston?

Second question, what's the most care-free type of 'tropical' tree for Houston, such as a banana tree, palm tree, etc?

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*knock on wood*

Assuming we end up closing in August, I have wanted a banana tree since I moved to Houston in '03.

Are there any fruit bearing care-free trees for Houston?

lots of good citrus choices. satsumas sure do well here.

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Yeah, just about any citrus will do well, as will figs and (usually) pecans.

Your banana tree will grow very large, but it will probably not produce any fruit as you need an absolutely perfect frost-free winter and we just don't get those here:

<a href="http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/extension/homefruit/banana/banana.html" target="_blank">http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/extensi...ana/banana.html</a>

Don't know about that, i know someone with a substantial tree in the backyard and says she's almost sick of them.

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My parents' banana tree has produced fruit once in 27 years. Frost has stopped it every other time. You may get lucky on occasion, but I wouldn't count on getting anything. And there is the little problem of getting 30 or 40 pounds of fruit at once, then nothing for years.

Edited by Ross
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There are microclimates all across Houston, so it's a good idea to see what is thriving in your neighbors' landscapes. I had never thought about planting Plumeria here as it is so frost-sensitive, but two of my neighbors have beautiful specimens that put off incredibly fragrant blooms. So it really just depends.

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Anything native will do well; ya know, your oaks, pines, pecans, etc.

Citrus varieties do quite well here, but make sure it does not get any fungus or wilt. The humidity here can do that sometimes.

Pomegranates can get quite large, but they will not have fruits too often if conditions are not right. They have some really nice flowers though, and can even be used as hedging.

Fig trees can get quite large here; there's a nice specimen near the Menil, if I am not mistaken.

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i'm very fortunate to be surrounded by fragrant magnolia trees. i grew up in a house surrounded by mimosa trees and the fragrance is imprinted in my mind, although the blooms were annoying to my parents when they fell on the car. haven't seen one in years. i also grew up with honeysuckle plants and china-berry trees that provided my friends & i china-berry fights that now seem like a crazy activity for kids:) we also had a fig tree but you have to stay on top of picking and/or clearing them off the ground when they ripen & fall off because the fruit rots. my grandmother loved to cook the figs, make preserves and fillings for cookies. the next door neighbor let me pick pecans, as a grown up i came to appreciate the value after buying them in the grocery store for a steep price.

Edited by debmartin
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Banana trees drop a lot of crap, but bear little or no fruit. My neighbor's lemon tree produces nice fruit. Virtually all palms do well. Crepe Myrtles grow well. Oleander does well, too. Pecans are OK if you like rather inedible nuts dropping in your yard constantly. My maple are doing really well. And, of course, oaks are always good.

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First thing I would recommend is to visit www.urbanharvest.org and take a look at their fruit trees section. LOTS of really good information on there. I just planted a Republic of Texas orange and will probably be getting a lime of some sort some time soon. The orange is LOVING being in the ground and has been putting on a lot of new growth! I would stick to the sub-tropical types of trees rather than the tropical trees such as bananas, my neighbor said its hit or miss on his and has them more for decor than actually harvesting fruit. Goodluck and let us know what you decide on!

D

P.S. Wabash Feed Store is a great place to get types of fruiting trees for the houston area. They just got in a new load of citrus last time I was up there...

Edit - there are several types of trees you can't find that often that love the Houston area... If you need a Loquat tree I can't keep them from coming up in my yard. Just need one. ;o)

Edited by SaintCyr
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Banana trees drop a lot of crap, but bear little or no fruit.

Ours always bear a lot of fruit, but yes; I do NOT recommend them. Most of the kinds that will bear fruit around here are not the "stereotypical" bananas; they're plantains. They are messy and require a lot of trimming, especially in the spring. They can also be quite invasive.

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I have a Meyer lemon in my yard. It does quite well. A new, key lime is trying to figure itself out.

Things are suscetible to winter cold snaps. You need to be wary about that in our area.

Edited by Porchman
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I have a Meyer lemon in my yard. It does quite well. A new, key lime is trying to figure itself out.

Things are suscetible to winter cold snaps. You need to be wary about that in our area.

I would give anything for one of those cold snaps right now... just for 24 hours, I promise. :D

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[OT] I'm going to have to quote you on that the next time that Red accuses me of locker room talk. [/OT]

lol, it is actual advice from my grandfather. :D

Dig your planting hole deeper and wider by twice the amount you think it should be. And always amend your soil before backfilling the hole. At the very least, cut some manure into it.

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lol, it is actual advice from my grandfather. :D

Dig your planting hole deeper and wider by twice the amount you think it should be. And always amend your soil before backfilling the hole. At the very least, cut some manure into it.

kinky :lol::P

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Oaks are great. I never noticed how many sycamores there are inner loop until I bought a house with one. Those things are everywhere. The huge leaves make great shade, and they seem to handle the heat/sun well. In the fall, raking takes 2 minutes because the leaves are so big and easy to gather.

So the heat took all the leaves off of our meyer lemon tree, but there are still a few lemons there. I wonder if it will make it. It's no bigger than a bush right now, hopefully it's small enough to make an easy comeback.

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So the heat took all the leaves off of our meyer lemon tree, but there are still a few lemons there. I wonder if it will make it. It's no bigger than a bush right now, hopefully it's small enough to make an easy comeback.

Hrrrm. I saw plenty of tips of how to protect from the cold. Is there anything you can do to protect against the heat? I hope your tree bounces back!

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*knock on wood*

Assuming we end up closing in August, I have wanted a banana tree since I moved to Houston in '03.

Are there any fruit bearing care-free trees for Houston?

Second question, what's the most care-free type of 'tropical' tree for Houston, such as a banana tree, palm tree, etc?

Banana trees grow really well here...too well in fact. Be careful to keep it in a sequestered area or it will spread all over. I grew a jungle from a singe tree in my backyard. Ultimately, I dug them up and just planted one in a big planter and it has done okay ever since. Only saw fruit once and it was just small plantain-like green things.

We also planted a couple of mexican palms and they have done well with minimal care.

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So the heat took all the leaves off of our meyer lemon tree, but there are still a few lemons there. I wonder if it will make it. It's no bigger than a bush right now, hopefully it's small enough to make an easy comeback.

Our meyer lemon tree is doing really well with the heat. Ferltilizer appears to have helped our small lime.

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Our meyer lemon tree is doing really well with the heat. Ferltilizer appears to have helped our small lime.

Is yours in a sunny spot? We were worried ours would get too much sun where it is, I think that might be the case.

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the more sun the better.

I guess. The leaves all dried out, turned yellow, and are now on the ground. There are other explanations I suppose, I'm going to try to feed it back to life. Maybe a dead animal or something...

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Is yours in a sunny spot? We were worried ours would get too much sun where it is, I think that might be the case.

Except for the first part of the morning, it gets a lot of sun. It loves sun, in fact. It was leaning severely to the west to the point that I was putting braces on it. Then Tricon pulled down a couple of trees when they put up some "firehouses" behind us. It

has balanced itself out nicely.

If it's in a pot, it may be getting over toasted in this heat. I thing that is what is making my lime grumpy.

Also, if the leaves went yellow (not brown and folded) before they fell off, you might have been doing too much watering.

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Except for the first part of the morning, it gets a lot of sun. It loves sun, in fact. It was leaning severely to the west to the point that I was putting braces on it. Then Tricon pulled down a couple of trees when they put up some "firehouses" behind us. It

has balanced itself out nicely.

If it's in a pot, it may be getting over toasted in this heat. I thing that is what is making my lime grumpy.

Also, if the leaves went yellow (not brown and folded) before they fell off, you might have been doing too much watering.

It's at the edge of a bed, we have a timed sprinkler on those beds that come on for 5 minutes ever other day. If that is too much that might be it. The lemons are still there (still green), I'll dry out that area and see what happens.

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It's at the edge of a bed, we have a timed sprinkler on those beds that come on for 5 minutes ever other day. If that is too much that might be it. The lemons are still there (still green), I'll dry out that area and see what happens.

that's not a lot of water. a deep watering is better than 5 mins from a sprinkler.

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As far as palms, many do well here. Queens, Pindos, Mexicans, Majules, Dates, Norwalks, etc. I've had almost every type listed and I find that there is very little more robust than the Pindo. If you keep them trimmed properly they will handle both our heat, and tempuratures below 15 degrees.

As far as fruit... Nothings better in our climate than lemmon.

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that's not a lot of water. a deep watering is better than 5 mins from a sprinkler.

We have a mix of plants back there including a red oak. Would you say that watering once/week for 15-20 minutes is better than hitting it lightly for a few times per week? With rain coming back I didn't want to hit it with too much water.

By the way the lemon tree had 2 big new leaves on it this morning. It's a start.

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We have a mix of plants back there including a red oak. Would you say that watering once/week for 15-20 minutes is better than hitting it lightly for a few times per week? With rain coming back I didn't want to hit it with too much water.

By the way the lemon tree had 2 big new leaves on it this morning. It's a start.

with the heat we've been having, a light sprinkle just evaporates. the roots need a good soaking. i ended up planting a key lime about a month ago and i've been doing a deep soaking about 2x/week. I'd say at least 20 new limes since i planted it along with the 10 or so that are about ready to eat. probably would have had more cept a hornworm got to some of the new growth. got that bastard though.

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5 minutes every other day is just a tease as far as your lemon tree goes. You would be amazed just how much water comes from an average rain storm and generally we get 1-2 of those a week during a normal summer.

I will generally run the sprinkler for an hour at a time 2-3 times a week over each section of the yard and that seems to do the trick for all of the foliage and grass. A few of my foundation shrubs are drying up because they're out of range of the sprinkler, but for the most part my yard is surviving.

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5 minutes every other day is just a tease as far as your lemon tree goes. You would be amazed just how much water comes from an average rain storm and generally we get 1-2 of those a week during a normal summer.

I will generally run the sprinkler for an hour at a time 2-3 times a week over each section of the yard and that seems to do the trick for all of the foliage and grass. A few of my foundation shrubs are drying up because they're out of range of the sprinkler, but for the most part my yard is surviving.

That's right on the mark. It's much better to water less frequently, but much deeper. This allows the root systems of grass (especially St Augustine), trees and shrubs to grow down versus sideways. The general rule is about an 1 to 2 inches of irrigation a week, but done in the intervals exactly as you are doing.

By the way, a good way to measure how much time one needs to run their sprinkler is to place a coffee can in the sprinkler zone, and wait until it fills to roughly half an inch deep. This will tell you how long your particular sprinkler takes to get the job done.

Edit: Another thing to consider, and it will give you BIG results with trees, is to purchase a deep root watering system. They're about 50 bucks and work beautifully, not only for irrigation, but for fertilization as well. Also, since night time temps are in the low eighties to high seventies you can irrigate at night without the fear of fungal diseases. Just don't overdo it.

Edited by Gary
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