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Wait until you can come back and say, 'Oh. It can kill trees. Remember - citrus trees grow fruit on the tips of their terminals. This tree is in its second year. IAN TOLLEY: Well, make up your mind that the variety is what you want, get the right rootstock, make sure that you plant it properly, make sure the nutrition is ok and learn to shape the tree - you're there for life. The principles are the same, Ian says, whether planting into a container or in the ground. The reason was that my father was beginning to develop an orchard and nursery - and I fell in love with that. SOPHIE THOMSON: Fertilising is a huge and complicated subject, but do you have a general rule for feeding your citrus Ian? "Whilst birthdays keep rolling along, it doesn't diminish my passion for all things citricultural. SOPHIE THOMSON: And so we wash the potting media off a plant that we're going to plant into the soil too? IAN TOLLEY: The magic temperature - 14 degrees centigrade. In 1945, a citrus rootstock breeding programme was initiated by Dr. F T Bowman of NSW Agriculture, in an attempt to obtain rootstocks compatible with Eureka lemon that were also Phytophthoraresistant and tolerant of citrus tristeza virus. Contact us today to see if … IAN TOLLEY: I am and whilst birthdays keep rolling along, it doesn't diminish my passion for all things citricultural. Now, to Ian's second essential for citrus success - planting. Here's a lovely rootstock and a little graft put in of the variety that someone's selected. In 1966, after many years of horticultural study and hands-on experience, Ian won a Churchill Fellowship that took him to orchards in South-east Asia, the USA and Israel where he set about solving citrus growing problems and his work's been recognised with a medal of the Order of Australia. Here we go. If we start with step one - so how do people know what variety to choose? How nice to see you. It's not cool, so it's not transpiring,' so you need to water. In Australia there are over a … You just go to its leaves and if the leaves are shiny and really firm and cool - more than anything, they're cool to your touch - then you know the plant is happy, so go away. "Well, make up your mind that the variety is what you want, get the right rootstock, make sure that you plant it properly, make sure the nutrition is ok and learn to shape the tree - you're there for life," says Ian. Now we make sure the tree goes into a pot of fresh mix - ensuring the soil level is the same as in the original container. Inspired by a recent trip to Vietnam, Jerry suggests some exotic herbs to plant for a taste of paradise. SOPHIE THOMSON: Ok and how would you do it? COSTA GEORGIADIS: Sophie will be back later in the program with Ian's other two essential tips to keep your citrus alive and healthy. ", Now to Ian's second essential for citrus success - planting. IAN TOLLEY: It's potting media. We can actually do a little bit of pulling out....we've got our root system coming out...look at that. I'm still in love with citrus! SOPHIE THOMSON: Ian became absorbed with growing citrus in his early twenties. He says it's important to act quickly then, whilst the roots are still wet. From this distance, you can't see what you're doing and it's quite dangerous. The plants we received were vigorous and healthy and simple to pot out using the biodegradable tubes there were supplied in. ", Ian also suggests something that might surprise many gardeners. IAN TOLLEY: That's right and we want establish the tree before that happens. I was meant to be an engineer in the family tradition and that just didn't happen because I quit just before I graduated. IAN TOLLEY: Always composted chicken manure - organic - but you need to have additives to it and perhaps this bag is typical of the sort of elements that we use that get mixed up. IAN TOLLEY: Well, take this for example. Don't use secateurs! Don't damage it - spread the roots out over the whole of the pot.". Now we're inside in the hothouse, but the principles are the same - whether we're planting citrus Ian, whether it's into a container or in the ground, aren't they? That's it. We're aiming for a shape like a pear drop - an upside-down pear - that's what we're aiming for. SOPHIE THOMSON: And how often do we water? Ian adds trace elements from boron to zinc to ensure a good, balanced, feed. SOPHIE THOMSON: Well thank you so much for having us. That's the year to start shaping your tree - getting the number of terminals down and you start to get the tree back to a normal crop, every year. "Sunburn's a very serious matter. ANGUS STEWART: Don't be fooled by flowers and fruits..... COSTA GEORGIADIS: And Angus will tell you the pitfalls to avoid when choosing nursery plants for your place. ", "I always use organic, composted chicken manure but you need to have additives." I hope we've inspired you to get out and make the most of these early spring days in your garden. It's not cool, so it's not transpiring,' so you need to water. SOPHIE THOMSON: So you've just bare-rooted a citrus tree? IAN TOLLEY: Use something that you can say that, 'I'm doing shaping, not pruning.'. Sophie, don't waste your fertiliser with over-watering. SOPHIE THOMSON: And then we just backfill with soil, gently? IAN TOLLEY: I'd much prefer to call it shaping. Why the white trunks? SOPHIE THOMSON: But by the end of summer, we need to stop planting because the temperature's going to be cooling and the soil's going to get cool again and root growth will stop? "It's regular potting media, with chicken manure with additives - a couple of cupfuls - mixed in. Then we want to make sure it stays there, so here's the magic formula - zeolite. I'm in the South Australian Riverland, around 260 kilometres north-east of Adelaide. This section contains fact sheets on citrus varieties and rootstocks. SOPHIE THOMSON: Ok, so where do we start? Rootstock Services is a propagation business specialising in the production of high quality rootstocks for the commercial agricultural industries. COSTA GEORGIADIS: Jane will be visiting an espalier expert to get the lowdown on giving it a go in your garden. ", "Well it's a pleasure for me too, Sophie. IAN TOLLEY: I don't want to let them grow more than 2 metres. SOPHIE THOMSON: Wonderful. In the first year, I cut the top off - just snipped it. Do it now. Sophie looks at the finer points of growing citrus in containers with citrus expert Ian Tolley, For details about how your personal information will be handled by the ABC, please see our Privacy Collection Statement, FAQs - Propagating Pawpaw | Dense Hedges | Re-named Lime. Throw them away," says Ian. That's already in there actually - mixed up - and that locks the fertiliser with the nutrients, in the potting media so that when the start to grow, they can pick it up at any time...cuts the fertiliser use in about half! Here's the result of that..... IAN TOLLEY: Lot's of bushy growth, but a little bit suckering...tending to go well out and be a bit unruly. Stand back and work out where you want to go and you can get straight in. Throw them away. He suggests using something larger, but just as sharp - like shears. Since the business was acquired by Mansfield’s Propagation Nursery and Tissue Culture Australia, we have been adding more genus to our range of rootstocks and food crops that we grow.

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