I have GA-866, Honey Jar, and Sugar Cane. Love the flavor of Honey Jar, but not the size. Is Shanxi Li worth growing?
I have one but not sure what to tell you.
My experience is that Shanxi Li is better than GA866, Honey Jar, and Sugar Cane. The fruit is also larger than all of them.
What kind of climate do you have? I am sure that makes a difference.
My ShangXi Li is huge, twice your size.
Anyway, today I tasted my first proper tree ripe Li, it’s delicious, it’s not even brown, just turning slightly brown, this fruit is not the huge one.
That’s pretty strange. I checked from my records last year and I have Honey Jar as the start of mid-season, while Sugar Cane is the first early season to be ready.
Excluding girdled branches, I’ve so far gotten a couple ripe Sugar Cane, but no ripe Honey Jar.
If you include girdled branches, I’ve gotten 5-6 handfuls of Sugar Cane and only 3 barely colored Honey Jar (which were still quite good).
Interestingly, several of the early Sugar Cane were wrinkled. It seems girdling is an interesting tool with some downsides.
Almost shockingly to me, I’ve gotten several handfuls of ripe Maya. This is surprising for two reasons:
1.) Last year it was a bit later than the other early varieties such as Sugar Cane and Autumn Beauty.
2.) None of the Massandra are ripe, even though they are supposed to be almost identical genetically.
I suppose it is possible that there is something about that Maya tree that is accelerating ripening. Maybe it is it a good spot, or being taller than average is getting it lots of sun. The Elk Grove graft at the top had a single ripe fruit today as well, which was very good too.
Maya/Massandra are also denser and have some crisp to them, though I prefer Honey Jar.
If you want really dense, then Sherwood is for you. I’m not very fond of it myself, as it feels almost tough.
No ripe Li here, but they are sizing up well:
Redlands are also pretty big. Big enough that the girdled branch broke off in the wind we had a few days ago (only ~30mph, at the extreme edge of hurricane Lee).
I gave the fruit to my mother-in-law who was very impressed with the size. I think this is how they pick the fruit for the Chinese grocery store…Not ripe at all IMO:
Here’s a pic of a heavily laden Sugar Cane from a rental. The girdled branch isn’t ripe there at all, unlike the two girded branches at my house.
I suspect it is because the girdle healed over too quickly…The ones at my house didn’t really heal at all, while this one healed completely over.
Here’s a new one, Goat Tit. The first fruit from it that I’ve seen.
My Shanxi Li has much less fruit on it overall this year, but there are still parts of the tree where there is a decent fruitset. Other parts have one fruit every 3’ or so.
@757Will, You’ll probably like the size of Shanxi Li, as it is larger than Honey Jar and Sugar Cane. But from a fresh eating standpoint, in my climate, SL has never been anywhere near as good. It is also not as consistently productive as Sugar Cane and especially Honey Jar (one of the most consistent and heavy producers).
I guess the question is if your results will be more like CT or CA. I would suspect CT, but am not sure.
None of the larger fruit is as good, IMO, but if you really want larger, then Dae Sol Jo and Autumn Beauty are two which I thought were a bit better, as well as being at least a little productive (though not close to the smaller varieties).
I’m going to need to see pictures to believe this
The fruit from Castanea’s pic look to be good sized and well ripened.
The So in this pic are about the size of Honey Jar. The two larger Shanxi Li are the more common ones in a good year. But I also get plenty of small ones, especially on one tree, where the pit doesn’t fully form.
From 2022, a pretty good year for Shanxi Li production:
What made dimples on some of your green Shanxi Li on the tree in the first pic? I bc am not looking forward to any insects bothering green jujubes.
@757Will I am also in the east coast. My Shanxi Li is 8 yr old if I counted the year it was planted. My opinion of this variety is very similar to Bob. This year, it barely set fruit. Non productive and subpar quality.
Please post a photo of Shanxi Li fruit that is twice the size of mine.
Please let us know if the GA866 ever produces decent fruit.
Nothing last year which was its first year in ground, and a few small fruit this year. Not sure why the fruit is ripening so small, must be the immaturity of the tree?
Honey Jar is loaded with mostly small fruit.
The three Shanxi Li in my photo totaled 6.5 inches across, which averages more than 2 inches for each one.
The largest fruit in your photos is 1.75 inches. Let’s see the ones that are 4 inches across.
It’s hard to tell from your photo. Your hand must be massive.
Honey Jar always has the most fruit here. Maybe the small fruit size helps it withstand less than ideal environmental conditions like drought this year.
Hetian Jade grafted on the same tree has fruit 5-10 times the size of Honey Jar.
Wow you could have a farm stand to sell your fruit, very productive.
I ate one vine ripe Li today, it’s very good. I’ll see if I can save some for my friends at the senior center. They went to the local farmers market and said the jujubes there were all green.
I probably do produce enough fruit for a few households.
My Hetian Jade had large fruit large last year (when I first grafted them), but they don’t have any fruit at all this year. Looks like it might be iffy in my climate. Or it needs more time, though the 2 grafts are on a well established tree.
I don’t think that fruit is ripening. Sometimes jujubes get red when they are very young. They will be brown when ripe. To me, it looks like GA-866 set fruit fairly late in the season for you. If it ripens, it will probably be a while.
Here’s what my GA866 looks like. This is the branch that I girdled. The rest of GA-866 on the tree only has 1-2 fruit on it, if that.
Aside from some varieties like Baby Red (which is always dark when immature), it seems pretty variable. For example, many of my Xu Zhou were red this year, particularly those on the girdled branch, but also some on the rest of the tree. Keep in mind that this was about 1.5 months ago and that none of the Xu Zhou is ripe yet.
Add 1.5 months to now and your GA-866 could still be unripe in November. And from what Castanea told me about growing GA-866 in CA, it needs warm temps to ripen well. I’m still trying it as a curiosity, and because I have ~100 other jujube trees to produce fruit. And even then, I have already grafted over half of the GA-866. But if it was one of 3 trees (as it sounds like for you), I would be looking to graft something more reliable on.