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Help! Treeage needed!

 
Posts: 268
Location: Haiti
21
forest garden rabbit greening the desert
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I have two newly planted fruit trees that are struggling.

The first is a velvet apple that was beautiful when I planted it about 2 weeks ago, but the goats butted over the whole thing. Fortunately they didn't get to the leaves or any part of it to eat it, but it sat in the sun for a couple of hours with roots exposed. I stuck it back as well as I could and heaped some organic material around and have been watering it twice a day or so. It LOOKS like there might be the slightest new growth, but I can't be sure. Is there anything else I can do to ensure it comes back?

Secondly, after bugging hubs about needing a Noni tree, he brought me a nice looking specimen bare root that someone dug up for him. The Taproot was about 2 feet long or so. I stuck it in a 5 gallon bucket with a moist potting mix and then planted it in the ground. I know they don't like a lot of wind when they're young, so I strapped a flattened box on the goat barrier to serve as a windbreak. I've been making sure it has access to moisture, though I haven't yet added anything to the soil or mulched it.

Poor guy is looking so droopy. It's definitely going to lose it's existing leaves, but will it come back? Should I water more? Less? Fertilize? Mulch? Sing to it? I really want this tree! I know they don't like standing water, which is why I planted on the upper bank of my new swale-in-progress. It's mounded up a bit so it shouldn't have too much water right at the crown.

Any advice would be appreciated!

Thanks.

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Velvet Apple looking sad and dry.
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Close-up of what MIGHT be new leaves, or they could be trying to fall off . . .
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Overhead of Noni tree.
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Droopy Noni! Not a happy camper!
 
Posts: 229
Location: Richwood, West Virginia
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Gosh darn, I hope you have tremendous success with perennial peanuts as a ground cover in that landscape.

I don't know if nematodes could be your problem, they ate my attempt at tomatoes in north Florida.

Let's see what pfaf. org has to say about Nematodes

Ok,this sounds like it might do well as a companion plant in your climate: Chop-Suey Greens "Possibly a good companion plant, protecting neighbouring plants from caterpillars etc. There is a report that secretions from the roots can be effective in controlling nematodes in the soil, but this has not been substantiated" Wow! It's used in the treatment of syphilis! Your renown as a witch doctor is assured!
 
Priscilla Stilwell
Posts: 268
Location: Haiti
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forest garden rabbit greening the desert
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I know what the cause of the ill trees is, I just don't know the best treatment. It's stress, not nematodes.

As far as being a witch doctor, I'm sure there are already ample rumors along those lines. . . Haha
 
Posts: 155
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That tree does not look happy.

First things first, light the bbq. Nothing good comes from goats.
(I have issues with goats, when the spanish first arrived in the caribbean the first thing they dropped off were goats, utterly destroyed the plant life)

I have had trees come back after a year of being leafless though far more just died. I would wait, and watch.

Anyway, where are your neem trees??

My father visited haiti thirty odd yesrs ago and brought neem back to bonaire, an island 350 miles south of you.
Biologist are still bitching about invasive neem.

Yet the first tree locals plant at their new home is the neem.
 
Posts: 254
Location: Virginia,USA zone 6
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Plants will drop all its leave after transplanting. Keep it mulched and water it every three to four days. Good luck!
 
pollinator
Posts: 751
Location: Southern Illinois
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Priscilla,

Please don’t fertilize!!

My guess is that your tree is suffering from transplant shock.  It’s roots are just getting used to their new home.  The likely need water, but not a flood.  

Just by looking at the ground around your trees, it looks dry and gravelly.  If this were my tree I would try watering around the tree and not just by its side.  A more moist soil will provide a more consistent supply of moisture to the roots.  A bunch of water dropped right by the tree will soak, them dry out as the rest of the dry ground competes for the water you applied.

I think that mulching is warranted, but perhaps not right up and next to the tree trunk, as you don’t want any mold or mildew issues on the wood itself while the tree is distressed.

Sadly, you may lose your foliage, but this does not mean that the tree is dead.  The tree may well recover once the root is established and can support foliage, but for the meantime, the tree may be shedding its foliage as a way of saving the root.

Give it some TLC and be patient.  While I don’t think singing will help, giving it other attention may do wonders.

Good luck and please keep us updated,

Eric
 
Priscilla Stilwell
Posts: 268
Location: Haiti
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I'm not fertilizing these but the rain is coming pretty much every night now. The Velvet Apple has distinctly green spots on the leaves that tell me it still has life in it. That's encouraging. It should pull through.

The Noni is another story. It's all black on the leaves. The leaves are not my concern since I expected to lose all or most. But I'm just hoping the root has life in it without getting rotten. Thinking of cutting all the foliage off (it's hard to reach inside the goat barrier) so I can see the progress if any comes. That might give a bit of mulch to protect the roots as well. My understanding is Noni are super tough so I suspect it might pull through.
 
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