Intro from Northern California

Hi everyone. I have been following this forum for a while now but not made a intro until now. I am located in zone 9A (Northern California Sierra Foothills - Calaveras County.) I currently have <1 acre parcel growing various fruits with the 1st planting of a fig tree made in 2017.


Welcome Chewy. Lots of good folks and info on here. What other things are you growing? I think @fruitgrower, @SteveM, and @Stan are among those on here that are close to you.

Thanks for the welcome! Excited to learn and share about my experiences. I see Stan is a pretty close neighbor to me.

Currently Planted:
Citrus: bears lime, eureka varigated lemon, eureka lemons, kumquat.
Fruits: Fuji Apple, Granny Smith Apple, Beverly Hills Apple, Plum, Peach, Fig

I acquired my bareroot plants and potted citrus from Costco. My soil conditions were clay but I brought in topsoil blended with mushroom compost as my planting medium for filling in the hole. I didn’t fill back in with the shale/clay. I have a big gopher problem so I have chicken wire gopher cages made to protect my plantings. The deer have so far been kept out by plastic netting.


Cool, thanks for the reply. Must be nice to be able to grow citrus in the ground, or are those potted? I hear ya about varmits, although my main nemesis has been deer, not rabbits or gophers. So much so, that almost all my fruit trees are behind a 4ft circular fence.

I visited Yosemite in 1993, it was so beautiful there, you are in a very nice place, even though it sounds like your soil isn’t the best. Our farm soil varies, it’s mostly a nice loamy mix, but very inconsistent in nutrient profiles. Down the hill the soil pH is about 6.5 and rich, but up here higher up the hill, it’s around 5 and poor, so I’ve had to do a lot of soil amendments. We started our tree and berry plant “experiment” 2 years ago, and I think I’m done with it. I hope. I got more trees/plants than I can take care of now, plus gardens, too.

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Welcome aboard, Chewbacca1. I’m somewhat of a newbie to the forum also. I have learned a lot from these very knowledgeable people on here. I am growing citrus here also, in ground. I am zone pushing, but so far have not lost any trees in three years. Have several stone and pome fruit trees, unfortunately, the late freeze we had this past spring killed most of the fruit. It sounds like you are getting a nice collection going. Have fun.


Hey Chewie, welcome to the forum!

My soil is also clay. Based on my experience, when filling a hole, it’s better to mix the excavated clay with topsoil/compost, and plant the tree on the resulting mound. If you fill with only the topsoil/compost, after the tree consumes the organic matter, it will sink into the ground and drop below the grade level, which is not good for the tree’s health.

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You’re growing Bearss Lime inground in the foothills?

Yes, I’ve got bears lime in the ground. Probably need to protect it from the frost, it gets cold down to mid 20s here for a few days at a time during the cold season.

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I’m sure you will.
I’m 9B at 460 ft elevation in the Bay Area, and we need to protect when young.

Here’s where a lot of members introduced themselves.

I am at Zone 9A elevation 900ft. Just right before Yosemite NP (Knights Ferry). Any ideas on what kind of wind and frose fabric is best? I’v been considering the buulk agri-bon covers or dewitt. I need lots of any, any suggestions a vendor with good pricing?

A heat source,like old fashioned outdoor Christmas lights or a small heater with a thermostat,may be helpful underneath the covering. Brady

I just use the basic ones from OSH. Fortunately we haven’t seen any temps below 26f so they’ve been spared any serious damage in the last 3 years. Like Brady said those C9 old school Xmas lights works wonders. They would probably take down to single digits (god forbid if that happens) without damage.

Thanks for the tips.

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@Alan Haigh, I simply read an article on HOWZ and started to quickly see more than a trickle of solicitations. If you have gmail, there is feature called Filter messages like these, and you can (as I did) simply delete them all or send them to a folder where, IF YOU HAVE TIME, you can look at them eventually then delete all the irrelevant ones!
I am new to this forum as of today 9-4-2020 and posted a Dwarf citrus question if ya’ll will take a look. (Fruit tree newbie here) I’m in NorCAL just south of San Francisco, but north of the fires. Between Pacifica and Half Moon Bay in a small hamlet called Moss Beach. My yard is about a block and a half from the ocean.

Greetings from Point Reyes Station. Sorry about the smoke that might be blowing down your way from the Woodward fire, which is only a mile or so southwest of us. Should be thinning out pretty soon.

I’ve surfed Moss Beach, as I recall, almost 50 years ago, so I’m a bit fuzzy on it. I also remember eating at a restaurant there. My sister lives a ways north of there in West Haven just north of Arcata. I could check your question about the dwarf citrus, but I doubt I could provide any guidance. Here where I’ve lived for the last 30 years we only grow citrus in containers. Even when I lived in S. CA I was in a cold spot at the base of Topanga Canyon (I mean near the creek not near the ocean, although it was in the canyon itself). I grew a dwarf summer orange (Valencia) for my dad and managed to get some fruit by placing it against a south wall.

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Thanks for the advice! There is a very famous surfing spot in Moss Beach, out past Pillar Point near Princeton Harbor, known as Mavericks. You probably dined at the Moss Beach Distillery in my Neighborhood, Seal Cove, aptly named due to harbor seals that haul out on the rocks down below at low tide. (Often Surfer Mags. refer to Mavericks as in Half Moon Bay, but that is south of the Harbor actually.) As for the Citrus trees, I may try containers too! Being so close to the ocean we get strong cold winds in winter here, but if l put it in the ground, the pocket gophers may try to get it! Thanks again! Monster Mavericks waves top 60 feet: 'You could die just trying to get out'

Ah yes, I remember when squirrels shared the spot of enemy No. 1 with gophers. I spent many hours of my youth setting Macabee traps on my father’s property to protect my veg garden and the fruit trees they’d go after. They didn’t like fig roots but would do so much tunneling that you couldn’t keep the soil moist without stamping it down with every watering.