Cara Cara or is it? Nov 15, 2019 21:58:18 GMT -5
Post by isaac1 on Nov 15, 2019 21:58:18 GMT -5
If you want the short version, skip down to the last sentence or two.
As you likely know Cara Cara was first discovered growing as a limb sport of a Washington Navel orange about 45 years ago, and I have read that they may be more prone to spontaneous mutation than many other types of citrus. In the spring of 2016 I bought a Cara Cara orange tree that is grafted to a trifoliate rootstock, likely Kuharski or Carizzo. I planted it in ground and it grew rapidly starting off barely over a foot tall, and is now over 8 feet (was at 7 feet this time last year), it is also very thorny.
This is the first year that it has developed any fruit, there are currently 25 or so Oranges growing on the tree. Being in the southern US on the 8b/9a line in Louisiana we were hit by the arctic blast this week with low temperatures reaching down to 24F (-4C). I covered the tree and provided heat lamps, in the hopes of protecting the fruit, if this worked or not we will know in a couple of days, but for now it still has most of its fruit, which had already mostly colored up prior to the freeze.
With the real chance of loosing this first batch of fruit, I did go ahead and pick one prior to covering the tree, what I found was a fruit that appeared correct for Cara Cara, it was a hard to peel navel orange, though with a smaller navel than store bought Cara Caras I have eaten in the past. The interior had a red color, perhaps a darker red than I have typically seen in store bought fruit, but I have seen lots of variation in this. Now it was down to the taste, it was not overly sweet, but this may be attributed to being picked a number of weeks too early or to being on a young tree, however there was also a taste I was not expecting, and that is an almost mild grapefruit like taste. My question: Is it normal for not fully ripe Cara Caras and other navel oranges to have a grapefruit like taste?