Simpson Shadehouse - Adelaide Botanic Gardens

Simpson Shadehouse - Adelaide Botanic Gardens

20 April 2015


I planted this lemon in 2009.  Having had previous experience with the large, sharp thorns on a Lisbon lemon I chose a Eureka this time.  We've had 2 or 3 lemons from it in the last couple of years but this year it seems to be coming into more bountiful fruit production with up to a dozen fruits, not yet ripe but getting there.  The yellowing leaves, though, indicate that the tree needs some feeding and the colder weather, which locks up soil nitrogen, is probably a factor too.

17 April 2015

A Peeling

We bought a dwarf  'Tropical Beauty' Apple tree  from Diggers about 3 years ago and this is its first real crop - it had a couple of fruits last year but rats or possums (or both) or maybe even the dog ate them before they could be picked by human hand!  This year under netting the tree produced just over 950g of fruit.  Tropical beauty is a 'low chill' apple suitable for growing in subtropical and temperate regions.  In addition, it's self pollinating and being a dwarf can be grown in a large pot or half-wine barrel.  It grows or can be pruned to about 2 metres.  It has a mainly green skin with slight red blush and a bloom which makes it look dull but which is easy to rub off.  The fruit also tends to have 'sides' rather than being round.  And as the photo shows, it has a golden flesh.  But what does it taste like?  The real test!  It's juicy and sweet!  Well worth trying if you want to grow apples but you don't get enough cold days to grow 'traditional' varieties and you have limited space.

07 April 2015

Almond crop!

We planted a self-fertile "All in one" Almond in 2009 and, although it has had a few almond drupes in the past two seasons, this is the first year it has yielded anything like a crop!  Even so it was less than half a kilo unshelled.  Based on a sample weighing I think we'll end up with about 180g of actual almonds!  Still they taste much better than the stale offerings you can buy bagged up in shops.


We planted a Jujube (Ziziphus jujuba) about 5 years ago.  It looked like a twig when it was planted and I'd have to say its growth has been disappointing. It's still not much more than 30cm high!  Jujube bushes are supposed to grow to 5 to 12 metres but I can't see that ours will ever reach anything like that height despite it being in a sunny aspect with plenty of water (they're supposed to be drought hardy and not need much water) and fertilised regularly (they're supposed to not need much fertiliser!).  So it's a puzzle to me.  Perhaps it's just a one-off plant that refuses to grow very much.  In any case it has finally produced some fruit and the results are quite tasty, better straight off the bush, in my opinion, than dried ones.