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Growing carob

 
Paula Edwards
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Carob seems to be the ideal permaculture plant.
There are hermaphrodite varieties too, which fruit earlier, like Clifford.
But our summers are moist and cools, at least at the moment it might get back to dry and if the sky is clear it gets hot too. Our climate is cool temperate and it can go down to minus 5 °C.
 
Burra Maluca
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We planted a couple of young carob trees last year and they seem to cope with our frosts.  We are in a Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers, but the winters are 'cool and wet', which, in our case, seems to mean weeks of rain interspersed with drier weather with frosts down to minus 5C.  Some winters we go much colder minus 9 on occasion, but we didn't have the carob planted then so we're not sure if they would have survived it or not. 
 
                          
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Stablished trees are somewhat hardy (a bit more than orange trees).  Young trees need more protection the first years.  Also varies between varieties.

They love water as long as their roots can breathe properly.  They won't grow in waterlogged conditions, so if your place has a humid weather, place them in a very well drained place.  Not sure how they will fruit and rippen in a wet summer.
 
Tyler Ludens
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The trees are either male or female, so you have to make sure you have both sexes in order to get pods.  There's no way to tell which is which until they are old enough to bloom.

 
                          
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Ludi wrote:
The trees are either male or female, so you have to make sure you have both sexes in order to get pods.  There's no way to tell which is which until they are old enough to bloom.


There are trees with perfect flowers (hermaphrodite) which are self fertile, including selections.

Best way to go is to graft seedlings.  These will also fruit earlier.
 
Tyler Ludens
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ilex wrote:
There are trees with perfect flowers (hermaphrodite) which are self fertile, including selections.


I did not know that!  There was an old male carob tree in our backyard in Van Nuys, CA.
 
Paula Edwards
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There is a variety Clifford I could buy. Our soil is not really draining, but I will make a mound maybe nearly a meter high.
 
T. Joy
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Bugs and grubbies love it so take particular care. When living in San Diego I found myself processing boxes of wildcrafted carob and at least half of it was unusable because something else was already eating it .
 
Jack Shawburn
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Crafty,
Please explain how you process the Carob.

I get lots of pods from neighbor since ours are still too small to bear.
Will try grafting.  Growing some from seed.
They do grow slowly but are the most beautiful shade trees.
 
T. Joy
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Basically I was breaking off the parts of the pods that had bugs, grubs and their holes, etc to salvage as much as possible. They were selling it as is so it was minimal processing to be sure.
You can let it dry completely and grind it to powder like you buy in a health food store, it's a good substitute for cocoa powder in baking etc and supposedly has some nutritional benefits. 

What would you use it for?
 
Jack Shawburn
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I would use them for baking and shakes.
I like chewing them after taking out seeds for growing.
If they are well dried and finely ground then will be good for including in muffins and breads.

Do you take seeds out before grinding and what do you use for grinding?
 
T. Joy
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We didn't take the seeds out at all, they were sold as is. For grinding a high powered blender like the vita mix would work but you might have good luck with a food processor or small batches in a spice mill. I don't have any experience with a grain mill but that might also do the trick.
 
Julie Norris
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Visiting San Diego for the next 3 days, where can I find some pods to buy? I love eating them raw. 907-750-870two.
call or txt. Thanks!!!
 
Julie Norris
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Visiting San Diego for the next 3 days, where can I find some pods to buy? I love eating them raw. 907-750-870two.
call or txt. Thanks!!!
 
John Elliott
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Julie Norris wrote:Visiting San Diego for the next 3 days, where can I find some pods to buy? I love eating them raw. 907-750-870two.
call or txt. Thanks!!!


Buy?!? Just walk through Balboa Park with a snipe sack and wait for them to fall in.
 
Julie Norris
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John Elliot , Is That legal? and what area of the park? I am back in AK but my sister is still there. I would like to find someone I can buy from on a annual basis...

 
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