I grew up in Orange County, California in the ’60’s and ’70’s. It was a great place to live.. it still had a small town feel, everyone knew everyone and it was safe to stay out after sunset. I miss how it used to be! The one thing that I took for granted though was the climate.It never froze or snowed there -we lived just a few miles from the ocean, our backyard had orange trees and banana trees, my grandparents had huge Avocado trees… unfortunately, I didn’t like avocados at the time. I visit there from time to time. The weather is the same, but the area is not!
In 1978 we moved to Apple Valley, which is approximately 100 miles inland in the desert! Every winter the temperature at some point drops to 15 to 20 degrees F. That means no avocado trees, no banana and no citrus trees! Or does it? I do know of one citrus tree in a neighboring town (Hesperia) that has survived for at least 15 years now. I don’t know what type of citrus but I’d like to find out!
So, in researching cold hardy citrus trees, I stumbled across Yuzu trees! Yuzu is a Japanese citron that is highly sought after for it’s aromatic peel. Best of all it is cold hardy to 10 degrees Fahrenheit! (-12C!) Looking at some blogs, I came across a post about Yuzu “tea” that piqued my interest even more… Now to find a tree!
The best place that I could find a tree in California (You can’t import citrus to CA) was Four Winds Growers, but they did not have any trees in stock! They did have other interesting trees though! (How about Australian Finger Lime?) Anyways, I kind of forgot all about it until last week – I checked and the one year old trees were in stock!
The funny thing is that even though it’s hardy down to 10 degrees, I’m kind of nervous about planting it outside right away! Maybe it can live for a while next to my lime tree in the bedroom!