An­swers to read­ers’ ques­tions on a va­ri­ety of gar­den­ing top­ics

The Palm Beach Post - Residences - - Residences West - ‘Cash’ Cash­ion

A lady asked me about her man­gos. She said they were beau­ti­ful but hard as rocks when she tried to eat them.

I told her that they would not ripen for an­other month up in the Trea­sure Coast and most of Palm­Beach County.

The early ones ma­ture in late June and July. Even then, you need to stick them on the win­dowsill and let them ripen to your taste.

I have a cou­ple ofHay­den­mango trees, and the fruit, for many years, has had mold, due to the damp­ness out here in the swamp.

This year, with the drought, they look good.

The kit and the Tommy Atkins va­ri­eties are beau­ti­ful. The kits even taste good. I have a Philip­pine beauty with long grace­ful limbs that has volup­tuous elon­gated plump beau­ties hang­ing from its limbs.

Man­gos are melon trees sent from the Melon God.

Back to Earth: I have still some toma­toes and a bunch of pep­pers that I’m har­vest­ing.

The Ori­en­tal egg­plant is ready to pick and will make a de­li­cious meal grilled in olive oil and some sea­son­ing.

I was talk­ing to a re­cent “trans­plant” from the moun­tains of New York. She was go­ing to start a gar­den dur­ing the next week or so.

I told her it was the wrong time of the year; she was sur­prised. The prob­lem is this: Veg­gies will die in the sum­mer down here in the swamp.

I start my gar­den from seed in early Septem­ber or late Au­gust in the house.

Last year, ev­ery­thing got “ate” the first night that I put the seedling out in the cruel world.

This year, I will pro­tect them with cover and place themwhere the crit­ters won’t be able to get at them.

About the hedge col­umn that I wrote a while ago. An e-mailer asked me whether I knew of other hedges that could be used and to list them if I could. So here it goes. Tall hedges: sil­ver but­ton­wood, areca palm, podocar­pus. Shorter hedges: coco plum, vibur­num, Simp­son stop­per, cro­ton.

An­other e-mail said, “I need your help with my ma­ture orange flow­er­ing royal poin­set­tia tree.

Ev­ery year, it is at­tacked by worms that crawl up the tree and eat the leaves. Thou­sands of them.

It is get­ting close to the time of their ap­pear­ance. Is there any­thing I can do to pre­vent them from climb­ing the trunk of the tree?” Neem oil should stop them. You can buy it through Ar­bico Or­gan­ics at www.ar­bicoor­gan­ics.com.

Call Cash at (561) 744-4750 or e-mail him at cleren5@aol.com.

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