Cherimoya Schmerimoya

You haven’t heard of the cherimoya?!!?

How many of you just clicked the link, got TERRIFIED by the dense, technical writing, and immediately gave up? I did, too. So consider that a little “joke” between us.

This guy intimidates me but his enthusiasm is appropriate for the subject. Seriously, he scares me to my core but when you taste a cherimoya, you’ll understand his exuberance…

The cherimoya tree is the most bizarre flora I’ve met. It loves San Diego’s climate but its pollinators don’t, so flowers need to be hand-pollinated.

Also, the tree needs to be murdered every February.

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This post is a two-fer. I have to prune my tree anyway and figured I’d drag you into it.

Before…

You’ll note I already did a hack job on some low branches.

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Step one. Murder the tree:

Step two. Scatter the remains to let other cherimoyas know to avoid this place if they know what’s good for ’em. Also known as leaf composting. Then remove the evidence (i.e., the ladder).

Step three. Less horrid pruning. This is supposed to be an act of care…

Tender moment (cue the violins): This tree is strong enough that I could hunker down in the branches while pruning. That’s like sitting in someone’s lap while grooming them.

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The tree will sprout leaves like crazy until May when it will begin flowering. “Like crazy” means A LOT for you non-horticulturalists.

Last year we hand-pollinated exactly 200 flowers. Guess what you’ll see here May through July?

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By the way, if you like home gardening posts, check out Greg Alder. I don’t get a penny for recommending him. The dude gave my garden a solid once over and was super helpful. He’s for real about this stuff so his post is way more informative than mine.

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Thanks for reading and stay tuned!

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