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Is my White Sapote Slowly Dying?

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Figbarron starts with ...
Hie all i purchased a Lemon Gold white Sapote tree in June and repotted mid july. Between the time i got it and potted it into a larger pot, it swelled its buds slightly and then nothing for about 2 weeks. I thought this was just cold weather interfering. After repotting and feeding with dynamic lifter and a little blood and bone it then put out larger buds as spring was broke in late August to Early September and then nothing.

The buds look like the new growth that has tried to come out has fallen off and left black dots where they were originally emerged. I don't get frost where i am so i have ruled that out.

I should mention that i tried giving it a bit of liquid feed and i got burnt leaf tips and quickly flushed the pot with water (this was before the first buds emerged). i have not given it anything apart from seasol every so often. Most of the leaves are still a healthy green but a few have slowly turned yellow and fell.


Any Ideas?
Kind regards
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Figbarron
FRANKSTON SOUTH,3199,VIC
27th September 2016 6:06pm
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Original Post was last edited: 27th September 2016 6:23pm
Peter91 says...
I'm actually having the same problems with the buds forming and turning black and not growing with a few of mine, and I really can't put my finger on what the problem is as a few of my other ones in basically the same conditions are flushing new growth fine.

Does anyone know what's actually happening?
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Peter91
NORTH PLYMPTON,5037,SA
28th September 2016 7:34am
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Markmelb says...
FB - Pic 4 is failed flowers.
Im still learning about these plants after 5 years but dont worry, once it warms up they will put out lots of growth & yes avoid feeding till its warmer.
They do perform better in the ground and also stay greener and grow a tiny bit over winter than nil in a pot.

This is a strange cold start of Spring is also wearing down my patience - has been warmer years but maybe will heat up in next 2 weeks?? these 8c nights should be 15c soon - at least havnt had any sub 5c nights for quite a while - or even a frost out front.
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Markmelb
MOUNT WAVERLEY,3149,VIC
28th September 2016 8:43am
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Figbarron says...
Thanks. Good to see im not the only one i'll wait until its warmer before i feed it. What do you feed your White Sapotes Mark? Would a blood and bone/chook pellet fertilizer and charlie carp regime keep them happy? I heard that they are heavy feeders.
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Figbarron
FRANKSTON SOUTH,3199,VIC
29th September 2016 1:11pm
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Markmelb says...
They arnt at all fussy - treat like a citrus with small regular feeds of good chook pellets - Slow release and some Potash before spring
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Markmelb
MOUNT WAVERLEY,3149,VIC
2nd October 2016 9:12am
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Figbarron says...
Thanks for your response. in terms of pruning i just nipped the top bud of mine its about 60cm tall above graft and 70cm tall from base of its trunk. Is nipping the terminal bud the only thing i need to do to get branches going or should i cut it down even further down? Cheers
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Figbarron
FRANKSTON SOUTH,3199,VIC
3rd October 2016 1:29pm
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denise1 says...
Now and again a white sapote tree will sulk, usually from the day it is planted. There is nothing much you can do except try shifting it or buy another tree of a different variety planted in another site.
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denise1
auckland NZ
4th October 2016 1:33pm
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Starling1 says...
I find that best results are achieved by treating them pretty much the same as avocado.
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Starling1
WHITESIDE,4503,QLD
4th October 2016 4:38pm
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Peter91 says...
Don't know what the deal is, but I noticed today that my Ortega that had this problem is starting to throw out new growth now anyhow.

So I don't think they're dying, probably just finding it harder to adjust to your climate in the first year than others.

I'll keep you up to date on how much it actually grows from here on out.
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Peter91
NORTH PLYMPTON,5037,SA
9th October 2016 9:51pm
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Figbarron says...
sure no worries. I'll update so that people having the same issues can know whats wrong. At the moment nearly 3 weeks later, nothing. The bark test shows its still green so its not dying. If it perks up or dies i'll update. at the moment i have given it some charlie carp (Organic Variant) on the 30th of September. No fertilizer burn as the first time. My Strawberries, figs and blueberries absolutely love charlie carp though :)
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Figbarron
FRANKSTON SOUTH,3199,VIC
10th October 2016 5:33pm
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Figbarron says...
A positive update!

I snapped a few pictures to show you its progress. It has started to produce some growth. I noticed that some buds have started to turn green and two of those have produced significant growth. It may have taken 6 months to get to this stage but i am happy. I sprayed the buds with pest oil when i noticed them turn green. Maybe i killed bugs that may have been destroying new growth or maybe its due to the warm summer weather.
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Figbarron
FRANKSTON SOUTH,3199,VIC
11th December 2016 4:55pm
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Peter91 says...
It's just due to the weather warming up figbarron, they were probably recovering and getting used to the climate they'd been sent to, all of my white sapote's that had this woke up and flushed new growth, pretty hardy tree's really.
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Peter91
NORTH PLYMPTON,5037,SA
11th December 2016 7:48pm
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Markmelb says...
FB - My Lemon gold is pumping new leaves - have you potted yours in a bigger pot like a 250mm yet?

the Pike has some fertilised fruits and I found a single one hiding in my SueBelle.

What was the Pollinator you have?
May I suggest Kampong or Chris as these
are good tasting and self fertile too.

Also sometimes if you put in ground they push roots before top growth.

If you can plant into ground now in a well prepared spot with compost and some rock dust it wont look back :)

I added some pics this morning
pic1 Lemon Gold i got same time as you
pic2 four I potted up last march not moving but healthy.Should go to a 430pot soon
pic3 Kampong & Golden Globe in ground with recent flush hardening - didnt move at all after planting Sept 2015 but must have been putting down roots.
pic4 a Wilson about 3 years old in 430mm pot. Facing east getting nice morning sun has done a growth flush and doing another now
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Markmelb
MOUNT WAVERLEY,3149,VIC
11th December 2016 11:52pm
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Original Post was last edited: 12th December 2016 8:21am
Figbarron says...
I was worried about it and was ready to buy a replacement one. As for pollinators I only have this. I may buy a kampong depending on space as I am waiting for cherimoyas.

Mines in a 300mm pot I recently gave it some chook pellet manure. And after I see more growth I will give it some liquid feed
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Figbarron
FRANKSTON SOUTH,3199,VIC
12th December 2016 8:48am
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Original Post was last edited: 12th December 2016 8:48am
Peter91 says...
Ironically i did that for mylemon gold FB, so now have two.

Lemon gold is said to be a pollinator so it might be worth buying a different variety for high quality fruits and pollination as kampong is self fertile anyhow.

Vernon or Chris would be two good options as a second tree. There's a guy in victoria who has a few unique varieties so could be an option to see what he has too. Markmelb might still have his contact info.
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Peter91
NORTH PLYMPTON,5037,SA
13th December 2016 8:26am
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Original Post was last edited: 13th December 2016 11:34am
Markmelb says...
FB - sounds to me like your over fertilizing - cant push them - a little in Late March nothing over winter - put half handful & liquid feed eco-seaweed (1 tsp /9lt warter can) & foliar spray eco-seaweed monthly over next five months or when you remember - work on having good drainage by putting pearlite about 10% - sand no good down here as holds too much moisture and causes root rot in cold weather.
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Markmelb
MOUNT WAVERLEY,3149,VIC
13th December 2016 8:39am
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Original Post was last edited: 13th December 2016 7:25pm
Figbarron says...
Thanks. do you ever feed with powerfeed or anything similar?
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Figbarron
FRANKSTON SOUTH,3199,VIC
14th December 2016 1:26pm
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Markmelb says...
FB - im experimenting with powerfeed granular (not the liquid ferts) but you have to put it beyond drip line - no good in pots or you will burn roots but looks good so far on the Kiwis etc make sure beyond that drip line.
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Markmelb
MOUNT WAVERLEY,3149,VIC
14th December 2016 8:26pm
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Figbarron says...
I see. I don't think powerfeed is organic anyways. I typically use dynamic lifter and then feed every fortnight with a weak organic feed like charlie carp NPK 1.6-0.4-0.7 on a fortnightly basis. I haven't killed any plants this way and my figs, berries and hawaiian guavas seem to love it.

I had a look yesterday and i seem to be small buds opening into new branches along the stem so i don't need to cut it back for it to force new branches so i'm happy. Once i get a cherimoya i can see if i have enough space for either a vernon or chris. Any idea on where i can get grafting wood for those two instead or buying another tree?
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Figbarron
FRANKSTON SOUTH,3199,VIC
15th December 2016 12:15pm
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Original Post was last edited: 15th December 2016 12:16pm
Markmelb says...
Powerfeed with Troforte granular says is organically enriched - i sometimes also give plants a bit of aged sheep and cow manures and they like that - I find is easy to over do the chook pellets and they need a change too.
I find rock dust helps alot as has lots of micro nutrients and - have used naked farmer which is brown coal and am trying small amounts of biochar.
My Chris wont be big enough to harvest wood for a while yet.
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Markmelb
MOUNT WAVERLEY,3149,VIC
16th December 2016 6:26pm
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AC1 says...
One experience Ive had with white sapotes is some varieties dont like backyards that get cold at night.The plant carries on with yellowing leaves dropping some. If the plant is in a pot place the plant in the front yard near bitumen road.Put shadecloth around it or put plant in dappled shade .The best heat bank around your property is bitumen it stores alot of heat during the day and releases it at night.Overnight temperature sensitvity issues apply alot more to us people trying to grow subtropical/borderline subtropical plants in temperate areas.There are more issues to consider.
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AC1
HILTON,5033,SA
17th December 2016 9:59pm
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Original Post was last edited: 17th December 2016 10:10pm
Markmelb says...
im on a corner and with lots of hot road around me so i guess thats why my trio planting of Casimiroas are going so well at present with coolish weather still? but the ones out back in pots and 100lt bag doing ok but behind a just a tad - thats also why i dont get a frost and also the morning traffic creates a breeze like fans in Mildura do to stop frost from settling on their Mangos - I dont have a helicopter at my disposal :)
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Markmelb
MOUNT WAVERLEY,3149,VIC
18th December 2016 1:24pm
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Peter91 says...
AC1 that sounds pretty normal for the white sapote when it's adjusting to the climate change depending where you got it from, my Golden Globe completely defoliated because I planted it too early, grew back totally fine and is now one of my biggest white sapote's.

I find that they can generally handle winters here fine when unprotected? Some will go deciduous and others will just continue to grow. The yellowing of leaves only really happens to the lower leaves that are starting to fall off due to increased top growth in my experience.

We live pretty close, so maybe there's a difference in your area, what varieties are you growing and have yours fruited yet AC?
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Peter91
NORTH PLYMPTON,5037,SA
18th December 2016 2:03pm
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Figbarron says...
For those with White sapotes that have flowered and fruited, what month do they flower and how long do fruits take to mature? Also does the fruit taste improve with age?
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Figbarron
FRANKSTON SOUTH,3199,VIC
19th December 2016 5:47pm
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Grant says...
My Lemon Gold started flowering in August from memory and has not stopped. Currently it has full sized and developing fruit as well as buds and flowers, but I am in northern nsw.
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Grant
Lennox Head
20th December 2016 1:29pm
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Figbarron says...
Wow i had no idea they keep flowering till this time of year. Mine flowered in August and the flowers aborted as it was still in stress. I think its trying to push flowers as well judging from this picture?
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Figbarron
FRANKSTON SOUTH,3199,VIC
21st December 2016 12:31pm
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Figbarron says...
Just an update to show how the entire tree has transformed since my first post. It now has 5 lower branches and is growing at an alarming rate
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Figbarron
FRANKSTON SOUTH,3199,VIC
28th December 2016 4:19pm
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Markmelb says...
there you go - patience is a virtue - remember to remove any growth below graft.Dont worry about flowers etc as real mature sized fruit may not happen for a couple more years. They can also flower anytime they want totally out of sync with each other as well - having a self pollinator like Kampong and chris and maybe Suebelle - I only have one fruit growing and is 3+ years now - the Reinecke next to it has a 5inch bottle base on trunk - very funny :
Pic1 Pyke in 100lt bag with fruit
Pic2 Reineke left Suebelle right Vernon rear (tape and tree guard stop rotten earwigs eating first new growth - it works too - will remove soon but it stretches anyway.

As far as big pots go will use air root bags in future - they work too but harder to move

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Markmelb
MOUNT WAVERLEY,3149,VIC
29th December 2016 5:29pm
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Original Post was last edited: 29th December 2016 5:32pm
Grant says...
Great to see FB these trees are so hard to understand. Will not grow when you think you've done everything right then drop leaves. Then they start growing and will not stop. Pretty rewarding when they play the game though
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Grant
Lennox Head
29th December 2016 6:16pm
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