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Panama Berry Tree

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Lynne starts with ...
Purchased and Planted my Panama Berry in May this year. Planted full sun, added organic,nutient enriched soil to the already clay soil when planted. Has been a bit water logged but dried out now. Tree looks sick. No flowers, Leaves very droopy, going yellow, not bright green as should be. Thinking of digging up and relocating or digging in some more decent soil. Whats wrong with it and what do I need to give the soil please?
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Crystal Light Bed
Brisbane
11th August 2012 3:46pm
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John Mc says...
Lynne, mine looks like that during winter also, it does that during the colder months but should pick up again in spring. I don't have any luck at all growing them in the ground, but do very well if grown in a large pot. Next spring, strike some cuttings for insurance.

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John Mc
Warnervale NSW
11th August 2012 6:32pm
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BJ says...
Lynne, they always look close to death their first winter here. Give it a month and it'll be covered in flowers and put on 6 ft in no time. Mine is kept at 10ft with hard pruning and fruits all year (but considerably less in winter), but even it looks droopy and a bit yellow due to the dry and cold wind at this time of year.
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Theposterformerlyknownas
Brisbane
11th August 2012 7:15pm
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Crystal Light Bed says...
Many thanks for your reply and helpful information B.J. I really appreciate that, not feeling quite so concerned now. Keeping fingers crossed, after I give it a bit of tlc next weekend. Lynne
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Crystal Light Bed
Brisbane
18th August 2012 12:33pm
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Crystal Light Bed says...
John Mc, Many thanks for your reponse.
I will definitely take that on board and try a large pot later. I found the perfect position in the back yard for the tree, so hopefully it will come back to health and I can get another from it and pot that one. Thank you, Lynne
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Crystal Light Bed
Brisbane
18th August 2012 12:37pm
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Crystal Light Bed says...
Hi John Mc sorry to say I think my Panama Berry tree has passed on to another life. It hasnt grown at all in spring, no new leaves or buds. time for another purchase but unsure as to why it died. Lynne
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Crystal Light Bed
Brisbane
27th September 2012 2:04pm
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John Mc says...
Did you scrape the bark with your fingernail? I still have hope for you, it might still be alive yet. If it still has life, you will see green under the bark. Start at the top of the tree and work your way down till you find green, or not.
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John Mc
Warnervale NSW
27th September 2012 6:16pm
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Crystal Light Bed says...
Yes I have scraped it from top to bottom in various places and its all brown, inside and out, from the tip to the very bottom of the little trunk. It goes to rest I'm sad to say. I cant understand it as it is meant to grow in any soil any conditions.....so they say!! Have no clue with this tree. Lynne
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Crystal Light Bed
Brisbane
10th October 2012 3:21pm
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Linton says...
Muntingia Trees now in stock in Police Road!

But will they grow in Melbourne? I had 2 Daleys trees growing profusely in large pots last summer and even got a few fruit on them first season which were really delectable.

Then they both suffered from sudden death last Autumn, about March, although it wasn't even very cold then. Most species will let sulk and die slowly if they don't like the conditions, but these trees went from being healthy flourishing plants to dead sticks almost overnight.

So I'm wondering if Police Road Nursery is aware of this, as they have now got a lot of trees in stock. Or of anyone has grown them successfully in Melbourne? They would be great to grow here if I knew what the problem was.

Here are some pictures of some big Muntingia trees laden with Panama Berries growing along the roads in Vietnam recently. It seemed like every second house had one out the front there.
Cheers!
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Linton
Springvale, Vic
29th November 2014 12:38pm
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Original Post was last edited: 29th November 2014 12:37pm
JohnMc1 says...
The same thing has happened to me over several years as well, I had trouble keeping them alive over winter. This year the trees endured a colder winter than usual and survived well, the only difference was their location where they got watered well.
Recently I got hold of some white berry seeds and they have since germinated. Don't know if there is any real difference between the red and white's.
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John Mc
Warnervale NSW
29th November 2014 4:17pm
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Linton says...
In Daleys description they are rated as "Very Frost Sensitive". But there was certainly no frost in March.

They were growing in full sun so I suspect that the soil may have dried out in the pots for the sudden death syndrome to occur like it did.

Do you know if they drink a lot of water.
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Linton
Springvale, Vic
29th November 2014 8:49pm
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ivepeters says...
They like being wet, hate drying out.
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ivepeters
CARINDALE,4152,QLD
29th November 2014 9:11pm
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The poster formerly known as... says...
They take light frosts in western Brisbane. Once they get settled they are just amazing in their fruit set and growth rate. I'd have probably 100000 fruit on now. My dad grows one in his chook run out west, which seems to work well. In dry times the berries are much smaller, after good rain the berries double in size.
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Theposterformerlyknownas
Keperra
29th November 2014 11:24pm
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sternus1 says...
Mine died a few months ago, just couldn't keep the water up to it. Story of my life really.

Sometimes when I tell people I'm on a 3 acre block, they're blown away that I'm not growing everything under the sun. Well, the reality is if I actually grew everything I wanted to I'd probably have to declare bankruptcy in a year. Just don't have the money for the water required to facilitate hundreds of trees. Might be different if I lived in a high rainfall area but it's always dry as dogsballs out my way. Add to that the anerobic clay soil and the fact that I'm on tankwater and the problem is further compounded.Generally 1-2 degrees hotter than the forecasts also, things get baked to death pretty easily.
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sternus1
Australia
30th November 2014 11:36am
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Original Post was last edited: 30th November 2014 11:35am
2 says...
I have a Panama berry growing in a pot under a small shade house thats now about 2 meters tall and about 2years old. Is it easily grown from cuttings (new wood, old wood, size) and what time of year is best? I get quite a few flowers but I think the rats like the fruit and I have not quite got them under control.
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John
GINGIN,6503,WA
30th November 2014 1:13pm
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Jenny says...
I have one to trade/ sell if anyone wants it, about 6' high and in a big pot Brisbane Southside email scodz AT bigpond DOT com best offer
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Jenny
Brisbane
30th November 2014 1:58pm
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Linton says...
Don't think I'll be trying to grow another Panama Berry any time soon as it seems a bit fussy. If it doesn't like dry and doesn't like cold it's probably not worth the trouble growing it here. Especially when there's so many other things you can grow that are easier to care.
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Linton
Springvale, Vic
1st December 2014 8:48pm
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George says...
I picked up my first Panama Berry tree recently from Police Rd nursery in Melbourne, this week its sprung up many flowers and the first signs of fruit. I've read that it doesn't like frost and being dry when young so this first winter will be challenging, I look forward to the fruit.
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George
Dandenong North
27th February 2015 11:01pm
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denise1 says...
The tree can respond to being planted in a greenhouse as it can be easily trimmed to fit in. I wonder what is causing them to die. Are they being killed with fertilizer as happens with yangmei and chocolate sapote or is it just chilling.
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denise1
auckland NZ
28th February 2015 9:46am
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denise1 says...
They are reported as being very easy to grow in the wild with a wide range of soil types. They are often grown in philippines etc by direct seeding as lots of trouble comes with transplanting. Perhaps they can be started in paper tubes with an open base and then set into the ground without disturbing the paper.
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denise1
auckland NZ
28th February 2015 9:54am
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Waterfall says...
I have one in a pot, they like a lot of water. Mine has lots of fruit and I really like the taste, kind of tastes like caramel popcorn. During winter they look a bit sad but take off again once spring arrives, they grow very fast indeed.
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Waterfall
Waterfall
28th February 2015 10:34am
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Original Post was last edited: 28th February 2015 10:34am
ivepeters says...
Probably best kept in a large pot,more manageable.
They like their water and if they're not getting enough you'll see it.
Interesting I always thought they tasted more like the buttered corn you used to get at KFC.
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ivepeters
CARINDALE,4152,QLD
28th February 2015 10:51am
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nicgee says...
Hi John,
I just saw your comment,and its a long shot, i lve in Perth and have been looking for a panama berry, can you tell me were you got yours or can i buy a cutting or maybe some berry to plant.
Cheers
Nic
0403 256 679
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nicgee
gwelup
28th February 2015 11:35am
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kim14 says...
Hi Nic

Blooming Nursery in Jandabup had heaps when I purchased mine a couple months back.

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kim14
dianella
2nd March 2015 3:14am
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nicgee says...
Hi Kim,
Thank you Very Much, will give them a ring now.
Cheers
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nicg
gweluo
2nd March 2015 11:56am
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John says...
Hi Nicgee sorry only just saw your message. Bloomings nursery had some small plants I think for $28. I also noticed a more mature plant growing near the driveway as you drive in on the right going in the open (I only noticed it when I was leaving so I am pretty sure it was).
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John
WA
2nd March 2015 4:10pm
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nicgee says...
Hi John,
Thank you for your reply,
Mate i have wanted one of these for 6 years and have begged, pleaded and threatened [ only kidding] suppliers all
over Australia but could not get one sent over. I went to Blooming today and bought 2 at $28 each, i thought a little expensive as they are only less than a foot high, but i am HAPPY.
Thank you to you and Kim who replied.
Thanks guys and all the best.
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nicg
gweluo
2nd March 2015 5:41pm
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John says...
I hope that they do well for you Nicgee. Did you notice a larger plant as you go in on the right by any chance? I have mine growing in a small area under some shade cloth, it is now getting to large for the area and was wondering if it would survive in the open.
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John
WA
4th March 2015 7:31pm
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nicgee says...
Hi John,
I was so Happy to jag a tree, i did not check out the surroundings, i just wanted to get home and put my babies in my yard.
The gentleman said that they can go out to full sun this time of year.
Yours is more established so i cannot see a problem.
I am going back on the week end to buy a Yellow Dragon Fruit, so i will an eye out for the Big Bugger.
Ps is yours fruiting yet, because next time i am on the way to Port Denisen i might have to jump the fence and Pinch a few. Heh! Heh!
Cheers Mate, and all the best.
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nicgee
gwelup
4th March 2015 11:21pm
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davewastech says...
I should add my tree to the death-roll of Panama Berry Trees. Planted Oct 2013 in ground. It grew at amazing speed, looked a bit sad each winter. Fruit was good. It didn't recover properly after its second winter, and died spring 2015.
Soil is fairly heavy clay - which may have been the problem. I don't think it lacked water. Mostly exposed, sunny position near Chatswood, Sydney, frost-free area, doesn't get that cold in winter. (Lowest Minimum at Sydney Obs that winter was 5C)
I'll probably buy another tree next spring, and have recently broken up the clay and mixed in mulch for several meters around the site, and more sheltered from wind - will see.
I met another guy who said his panama died after winter near Terrey Hills, Sydney, a bit cooler spot than here.
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davewastech
WILLOUGHBY EAST,2068,NSW
4th January 2017 4:32pm
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ell says...
Hi. i just bought a Panama berry in the past 2 weeks. and know nothing about how to care for it. i have it in a rather large pot that doesnt drain very well.
its on the west side of the house that gets lots of sun from midday onwards.
How long till i see flowers?.
is it easy to stike cuttings from the panama berry?

thanks
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ell
brisbane
20th January 2017 9:38am
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davewastech says...
I would think drainage is important (given mine died probably of root rot).
Keep it sheltered from cold winter winds if possible.
Don't know about striking cuttings.
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davewastech
WILLOUGHBY EAST,2068,NSW
21st January 2017 4:10pm
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ell says...
Ok. Thanks. One other question do they need special feed like citrus feed could it be happy with just seasol?

Thanks
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ell
SUNNYBANK HILLS,4109,QLD
25th January 2017 7:05pm
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davewastech says...
Hi Ell,
I don't know much about the fertiliser requirement. Especially if grown in a pot.
Mine was in the ground, and it grew vigorously, almost 3 meters in the first year - in Sydney. I occasionally gave it some citrus fertiliser.
But of course the problem for me was that mine then up and died. Your climate should be more suitable than mine, but still avoid the winter winds if possible.
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davewastech
WILLOUGHBY EAST,2068,NSW
27th January 2017 11:57am
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ell says...
Ok. Thank you Davewastech. Winter winds shouldn't be a problem it is next to a big water tank and another in ground tree.
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ell
SUNNYBANK HILLS,4109,QLD
28th January 2017 9:42am
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jensen says...
Tree grows well - very well actually.
Some fruit, but not 'impressive' considering the size of the tree.
-And the size of the tree is a problem: It is more than 6 m tall, but too thin to support a ladder. The birds get most of the fruit. ...
I guess it will survive pruning of side branches, but will it survive having the top cut off?
Has anybody any experience with that?
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jensen
innisfal
8th February 2018 5:20am
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davewastech says...
I pruned off almost half the tree after every winter, mostly off the top (in Sydney). Initially that was no problem. OK my tree died, but I think that was because we had a few cold nights that winter. Reading around it seems most people in temperate/sub tropical climates find the tree doesn't survive many winters.

I had read somewhere that we should keep cutting it back aggressively to stop it becoming too tall. (grows 3m / year)
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davewastech
WILLOUGHBY EAST,2068,NSW
8th February 2018 2:04pm
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Chad says...
I'm growing mine in a pot and I pruned it by 2/3 two months ago and it's fine.
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Chad
Lake Illawarra
8th February 2018 5:16pm
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Fruitylicious1 says...
Hi Jensen

Panama berry tree is a tough customer. They can easily survive any drastic surgery as long as they are watered well. Even if you decapitate them at ground level they will find a way to resurrect themselves. Steel yourself and have a go. At least when the tree recovers it's easier to harvest the berries.

Happy Gardening :-)
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Fruitylicious1
TAMWORTH,2340,NSW
8th February 2018 8:17pm
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davewastech says...
I was in Vietnam and Cambodia recently, and was surprised at how common this tree is growing on streets, in front of shops, anywhere - must be thousands of them. All the ones I saw looked healthy and big despite lack of care. I noticed most of them on footpaths have enough foliage pruned off the bottom to allow people to walk underneath. Hardly anybody bothers to eat the ones in the street - kids sometimes do, and I did - quite tasty. Maybe all you need is a tropical climate(?)
Oh well my second attempt planted in Sydney last spring is over 3m high already.
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davewastech
WILLOUGHBY EAST,2068,NSW
2nd August 2018 1:50pm
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davewastech says...
Good reference on propagating etc of this tree at http://tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Muntingia+calabura
In the tropics it thrives on neglect.
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davewastech
WILLOUGHBY EAST,2068,NSW
24th September 2018 5:12pm
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