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 Farming and Gardening in Puna
 Climate difference in Fern forest vs Hawaiian acre
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Greenreef
Newbie

USA
8 Posts

Posted - 08/24/2012 :  15:33:13  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I've been looking at moving to the bIg island for a few years now and the date is set, I'll be there in two weeks. I'm well prepared, done a fair amount of research and have a realistic outline for my first year or two but I know there's a difference between experience and information. I'm looking into Hawaiian acres and Fern forest as the main two communities I'm interested in buying in but others are not out of the question. I'm curious with the elevation and temperature change what fruit trees wont grow very well in fern acres. I know coconuts won't and I don't mind that. I'm more curious about fleshy fruits like papaya, barbbedos cherry, bananas and plantains, bread fruit, avocados and citrius. Anyone with experience growing these in fern forest please chime in. From what I've seen online most rentals are in the lower elevations and experiences may not translate one lot to the next let alone higher elevations. I don't want to rent for too long before buying and plan on a thorough camp out and survey before buying. Just want to help narrow my search some more and get an idea of what an uper elevation limit I may have to grow what I want. Also as far as garden vegetables go are most fine at higher elevations when in a greenhouse such as eggplant, cherry tomatoes and the like?
Mahalo

Cagary
Da Kine

USA
344 Posts

Posted - 08/25/2012 :  17:42:14  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Greenreef

Also as far as garden vegetables go are most fine at higher elevations when in a greenhouse such as eggplant, cherry tomatoes and the like?
Mahalo



Often times greenhouses in Hawaii are not used so much to keep cold temperatures away, they are used to keep the heavy rains off the vegetable garden inside. The heavy rains that occasionally fall can wreak havoc on crops.

Greenhouses also help keep insects and even disease away. Raised beds filled with good soil are another reason to have one.
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bananahead
Da Kine

USA
498 Posts

Posted - 08/25/2012 :  18:20:05  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
good difference in night time temp between the 2 places, Fern Forest is much higher than all of Hawaiian Acres and you will need heat at night Im sure.... Both get a ton of rain, so some fruit/veggies you may need to use a greenhouse.... papaya like it more dry/warm like in lower Puna (the Papaya Capitol of the World). I have a couple papaya growing here in HA but they only seem to do good (not great) in straight cinder so they dont get wet feet which they hate. Coconuts grow slow anywhere above 800' or so, and the higher you go the slower they grow... they like it fairly dry and on the coast like the papaya... There are apple trees above 3,000' Ive seen a few trees w/fruit in the Volcano Village area. Bananas and plantains, bread fruit, avocados, mango, soursop, citrus, pineapple, and many of the exotic fruits, etc. the lower you are the better they grow and some you may need to add good draining soil if you are going to plant in rainy areas like the 2 you mentioned. Im at 1,300' or so and get about 15' of rain, my best trees with my rain seem to be mountain apple, banana, rollinia, jakfruit, passionfruit, guava, and the exotics like palms/ginger/hibiscus all do well, others like tomato, peppers, strawberry, etc. have died off or struggled because of the wet, they will need a greenhouse or at least a clear roof.

save our indigenous and endemic Hawaiian Plants... learn about them, grow them, and plant them on your property, ....instead of all that invasive non-native garbage I see in most yards... aloha
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ForrU2Cry
Newbie

USA
46 Posts

Posted - 08/26/2012 :  21:10:52  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Aloha, We reside in the Eden Roc Subdivision which is between the two you have mentioned. The rainfall here has been abundant this year and so there has been few weeks of sunshine, a day here a day there. The temperature is cooler in the evening averaging around 62 but it is a damp 62 so it feels colder. All of the fruits you have mentioned I have seen grown here in the subdivision beside the Cherry. I tried to grow outdoors and it is nearly impossible with the amount of rain and the unpredictable weather, and bugs mostly the moths and the pickle worm. So this year I was able to install a green house and I have had a great experience growing Zucchini, yellow squash, spaghetti squash, watermelons, cucumbers, peas, lettuce, tomatoes and pumpkins including some berries, blackberries, raspberries, blueberries. It was such a waste for four years to try so hard to plant outdoors so a greenhouse is the way to go! Hope this helps in your endeavor :)
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YurtGirl
Kamaaina

662 Posts

Posted - 08/27/2012 :  16:11:14  Show Profile  Visit YurtGirl's Homepage  Reply with Quote
For ANY fruit trees up here, do your research on elevation. Plant it Hawaii has excellent advice and online charts. It makes a huge difference. The copious amounts of rain also make a difference. For fruit trees, you'll be much happier in the Acres or lower. Bananas come once every couple years, our lilikoi is blooming for the first time in three years, the Himalayan rasperries and guavi do awesome!!! (That's sarcasm... they're both invasive as all get out). I'll let you know in a year or so how our high elevation tangerines, figs, grapes, lychee, starfruit and longans do. We're hoping with enough chicken poop, they'll give up and fruit everywhere ;) Veggies need the greenhouse, to keep rains off, but also because the slugs here are horrendous and potentially carry a verrrry scary disease (see 'rat lung disease'.
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OpenD
Da Kine

USA
307 Posts

Posted - 08/28/2012 :  20:46:55  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
My recommendation is to get to know the folks at the County Extension office in Hilo. They have tons of free information available on all the different kinds of things that grow in the area, etc. as well as having a Master Gardener available to consult with, water testing, etc.

http://www.ctahr.hawaii.edu/peps/extension/county_hawaii.htm
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DanielP
Punatic

1651 Posts

Posted - 08/29/2012 :  08:56:00  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hawaiian Acres will provide a much better climate for growing almost everything.
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kani-lehua
Punatic

USA
1251 Posts

Posted - 08/29/2012 :  13:02:48  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Slugs did destroyed our nice growing papaya trees. Had some good luck with tomatoes. Tangerine tree did good. Fig not so good. Bananas did awesome. Starfruit is a beautiful tree, but has never produced. Have seen avos do really well. Pam Lamont lives across FF. She has a nice operation going on with lots of citrus.

eta: spelling error



"a great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices."

w. james


Edited by - kani-lehua on 08/29/2012 13:03:27
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YurtGirl
Kamaaina

662 Posts

Posted - 08/31/2012 :  13:47:06  Show Profile  Visit YurtGirl's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Kani-Lehua, I thought Pam lived closer to Pahoa!? Where is she, what is 'across from FF'?

We have had decent luck with tomatoes, meaning a big tomato here and there, never producing a bunch at once. Cherry tomatoes do great... Papaya never did good for me up here, but I planted it right in the ground, not in a pot with extra good soil. We got one round of figs and our Avo is growing bigger, may see something from it in the next year or two! Tangerines/citrus :( Only right after we transplanted.
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kani-lehua
Punatic

USA
1251 Posts

Posted - 08/31/2012 :  16:21:39  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
She lives on N. Glenwood. whereas FF (Fern Forest)is on S. Glenwood. Our avo and fig never did well :( Papayas did great until those darn slugs. Even tried copper, but it didn't deter them. They climbed all the way up to the leaves and destroyed the entire plants.

"a great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices."

w. james

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YurtGirl
Kamaaina

662 Posts

Posted - 08/31/2012 :  17:23:16  Show Profile  Visit YurtGirl's Homepage  Reply with Quote
They're monsters out here. I just killed a slug last night that was easily 8" long. Leopard print. They come for the cat's food at night.
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Cagary
Da Kine

USA
344 Posts

Posted - 09/01/2012 :  13:47:57  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Don't you hate it you have a few people over for some beers and some of them leave an inch or two of beer in the bottom of the bottles?

Well now there is something useful that you can do with that stale beer.

Put some open containers out with the stale beer in them. The slugs around your garden love beer and they drown in it. Just keep the dogs away. Slugs aren't the only ones that like beer.
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YurtGirl
Kamaaina

662 Posts

Posted - 09/01/2012 :  15:33:50  Show Profile  Visit YurtGirl's Homepage  Reply with Quote
True that, Cagary! My dogs are beer lovers. I go hand picking the buggers every month or so and put them in a bottle with a cap. Then they go in the trash. Keeps them down a LITTLE bit.
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Greenreef
Newbie

USA
8 Posts

Posted - 09/02/2012 :  05:35:07  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks all for the replies. It looks like I will be mostly looking in the Hawaiian acres subdivision and lower. Another question, I have heard ducks are good slug catchers, anyone here have a good experience using them for that? Or area few ducks just not enough? Also any danger of getting slug diseases like rat lung from eating a duck?
Mahalo
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kalakoa
Punatic

2698 Posts

Posted - 09/04/2012 :  14:24:52  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hawaiian Acres varies from nearly 1200' to around 900'. Some areas are "more wet" and/or "more recent" than others, check the vegetation.

Citrus works well, as do the "low-chill" blueberries. Apple, peach, nectarine, and pear are all growing but too soon to know how they will fruit. Bananas, coffee, sugarcane and pineapples do well.

Note also that HA is "pre-State", some roads have no power or phone, some cable is available where there is pavement.
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