Citrus crisis: As an iconic Florida crop fades, another tree rises

“Like citrus, pongamia grows in Florida’s unforgiving sandy soil. Unlike citrus, though, pongamia is mostly pest-resistant, has a lower cost of production, is drought-resistant, and can withstand wet conditions, and it requires minimal inputs. In fact, it requires a fraction of the irrigation necessary to keep citrus trees healthy. And unlike labor-intensive citrus, the pongamia can be harvested using a mechanized shaker.”


I wonder how much of our crops of citrus come from Florida anyway. With how affordable citrus is I have always figured it came from somewhere like South America, New Mexico or Venezuela. Getting rid of citrus would destroy many Mexican dishes and be a major blow to the fruit market as other than apples and pears (apples and pears save long periods so can be sold all winter) it is citrus. I have no problems eating fruit during the summer as things are on sale during the summer by the masses but winter you don’t have much selection. During summer you have cherries, plums, pluots, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries (both raspberries and blackberries are too expensive which is why I did not list them for winter crops), strawberries, apples, apricots, etc. You are a fan of sweet things like me you get cherries and alternate with pluots then you get sick of those you get apricots so you don’t get sick of them. Fall time my Costco gets persimmon for a few weeks but I will be honest and say I have never tried them. Winter time is blackberries and raspberries which again are too expensive, grapes which are both seasons too, apples and pears which are both seasons. Only thing that comes in winter is citrus like I said. Only reason I can see citrus going out of style is it becomes not profitable by how cheap it is or they figure out ways to import things like cherries, apricots and pluots during winter. Even then things like lemon and lime will be used during dishes.

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Just looked it up and orange juice and grapefruit come from Florida while the fresh come from Arizona, CA and TX. Surprised most are grown in the USA given cost.

Citrus is over-hyped by the marketing people as everyone is encouraged to have some OJ everyday.
Most any fruit except apples is higher in Vitamin C and many other vitamins and minerals.

Can this experimental tree really produce something the public is going to buy…I guess that’s the question. Still, if the marketing is there, then just like soybeans, I guess it’ll sell.

By the way ‘The Christian Science Monitor’ and “The Epoch Times” are about the only papers you can read that are mostly bias free (and even they have religious or other fobias and biases).
Everyone should at least look at a sample of something besides NY, DC, Chicago or LA papers.

Keep us posted if there are updates on this new orchard planting.

There’s more to Citrus than oranges and orange juice. The public demand for mandarins is high in western states. Grapefruit and Lemon sell well too. Limes are an important condiment in restaurants.

I have doubts.