It has been almost a year since I ordered and planted my Asian Pear tree and two years since my first attempt at growing anything. I have to admit, it has been a great learning experience filled with many trials and tribulations! Last year in November I decide to purchase more plants online and one of those happened to be the Owari Satsuma Mandarin tree. My kids LOVE Mandarins so we decided to check and see if there was any way to get one here in Illinois. I called John at Clifton Nursery and told him my situation. After talking with him a bit, I learned that it is possible to keep such a tree here in zone 5 but you just need to bring it in during the winter. He highly recommended the Asian Pear tree so I immediately ordered one from his company. The beauty about this specific Mandarin tree is the Owari is a well-known Satsuma cultivar which ripens during the late fall season, requires little water, and is cold resistant. My tree has been inside since November when we had the tree shipped to us and as you can see by the picture it still looks very healthy, even with it being so cold outside. I have been giving her water about once every 4-7 days and misting the leaves every other to every day. I think overall about 3 or 4 leaves have turned color and fallen off the tree but I’m guessing that is a bit normal. I could be speaking to soon, but honestly it seems pretty easy to care for an indoor tree. I do have to say that the customer service at Clifton Nursery has been outstanding even after the sale. I frequently have questions and they always take the time to help me figure something out. I have even been able to send them a photo of my plant and they provide the best solutions or advice.
I have taken what I’ve learned from Clifton Nursery and applied it to my other plants. Last year over the winter my rosemary plant died before it could make it back outside and, as you can tell by the picture, even after being inside for 3-4 months my rosemary is doing very well. I brought a couple other plants in for the winter and I plan to do a full post right before spring with a report on everything’s health.
I’ve been hooked ever since I started growing things back in 2010. The American Garage is a tv show based in Texas and the pilot episode 1 is the start of a restoration project to bring a Bradley tractor back to working order. As you can imagine, this project caught my attention and I was brought on last year. I owe this connection to my newly found gardening hobby and a product I sell called Castaloy.