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just remember what the zone is and your season is just so long .what part of up north are you going to if I may ask??also the main thing to plan on down south here is you need to irrigate crops and here at the zone 11/12 we use quite a bit of irrigationthat plus proper fertility is the 2 main things for southern crops plus time of year to plant and cultivation.
 

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Our afternoon rains are really late this year but due to start in a couple of weeks.
 

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I grow quite a bit in central florida. The key is to understand what it is you want to grow. The strawberries and blueberries did quite well this year, the season is just ending on both. The grapefruit, orange, and lemon trees set fruit and will be ready October - December. The fig trees are young, but producing a few figs here and there. The key lime flowers and produces fruit pretty much year around. I am getting ready to put in more pepper plants, as they will do OK through the summer. Last year I had a bumper crop of jalepenos and red and green bell. We just used the last of the frozen bell, and still have jalenpeno left. Okra does very well and is great in the winter stews. All herbs do wonderfully. Tomatoes are more difficult in summer due to the heat. Summer squash do well depending on the type. Green onions are great this year, and I tried a red onion from Park's called red baron that is also doing well. The raccoon ate the baby beets, dug them up, ate the beet and left the green! I only had one that he missed. I lived in northern climates for my entire childhood and part of my adulthood. I wouldn't go back. You can garden here year around, you just need to practice and study to understand how, especially if you are not a native of this climate.
 

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Bunny Poo Monger
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Smith said:
Up north my mother has a peach tree and some tulips and other things planted one of her pond plants two of them grew TWICE there normal size there monsters! But down here in Fl ya can't grow nothin at all we have had no rain for the last few months and NO rain for the next few weeks! Arghhh it bothers me really it does. Up there I planted a little baby pine tree that I rescued from being torn up I planted giving it nothing at all...next few years it's standing 5 ft tall! Plants,fruits,vegtables grow sooooo verrrry well up there but not down in the south I'm thinking of starting a small homestead or farm up there. It is the best place to have farm animals and grow a really nice garden I think! I can't wait until we go in 5 more months!! I can't wait I really miss the snow,the mountains the wildlife.
Smith can't even afford to feed her horse much less have a small homestead.
 

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Bunny Poo Monger
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Smith said:
Seee that's the problem! I like oranges but that's ALL people are able to grow down here we tried growing a vegtable patch....that was a big mistake with the heat and the bugs. I got one very good peice of advice please don't come down to FL thinking you can grow fruits,vegtables,flowers and have a little farm. Even the heat is hard on the animals enough! :eek: I've decided I'm gonna have my farm up North it's a lot nicer up there mild summers and beauitful winters ahhh I can almost smell the fragrant flowers my mother planted I know what your thinking I 'm making this sound really,really good!! :haha: I miss it up there. :(
More Smith drivel.
 

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Bunny Poo Monger
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Smith said:
That's exactly what we said! :haha: We would NEVER like to back to the North why would we want to go back? Florida is always bright sunshine you never get depressed it's always a beauitful day and there are a lot of things you can do like go to SeaWorld,Universal Studios and much more other places. Wrong! :no: Florida is hot we are never going to get any rain our trees are practically dying it's so bad. The animals can't stand the heat and neither can we. Florida is not a clean place to live either it's constant black dust everywhere in our house I can't even keep up with it right when you get out of the shower your sweating already because of the heat. I beleive Florida will get hotter and hotter it's like a wasteland really hot and dry. I actually miss the dreary weather up in PA there getting rain everyday perfect for growing things. And we have outstanding soil up there great for gardening. Everythings dark green up there. I know the animals would be extremely happy...give em a break from the constant heat. I just think I'm still VERY much a northeren person....Florida does not have corn fields,big red barns,mountains. We'll probably end up living up there once again....where thinking about....forgetting Florida. Maybe we'll come dow here in the winter to go to the parks but that's about it....I haven't seen snow in a while.... :p
More Smithtroll drivel. Smith, you can't even afford to feed your horse so I figure you can't afford water or fertilizer for any plants you might try to grow. It also sounds like you can't afford air conditiong and aren't a good housekeeper either. 'Course, what else would one expect from an unsupervised 15 year old twit with too much time on her hands.
 

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Smith said:
I can't wait until we go up! :p It will be really nice to smell fresh,crisp air! Where goin up right when the Bloomsburg Fair starts that will be fun! :D I'm thinking about getting my hunting license to. :confused:
:rolleyes:

Fla Gal
 
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You can grow a lot more then you think in Florida, you just have to remember your zone. Agriculture is a very large industry in Florida. While the majority of agricultural dollars are brought in through Valencia oranges (for juice) and tomatoes, there are many more fruits and vegetables you can grow. Remember you are not in a temperate climate anymore, you are in the subtropics or tropics depending on where you are located. Some fruits/nuts/spices that are familiar to you that you can grow are bananas, plantains, oranges, grapefruits, limes, lemons, tangerines, figs, coffee, tea, cashew nuts, macadamia nuts, pecans, mangos, strawberries, muscadine grapes, vinella beans, pineapple, avocado, coconut palms, oil palm, edible bamboo, dates, currants, gooseberry, blueberries, allspice, watermelons, honeydew melons, musk melons, cantaloupe, bay leaves, cinnamon, cocao (chocolate), curry leaf, black pepper, all kinds of herbs, and much more.

If you are willing to experiment outside of the norm and experience the many other lesser known but also very tasty tropical fruit you may want to take a look at the following web site: http://mgonline.com/fruit.html there are more then are listed on that site. Run a search for tropical fruit and you will find hundreds.

While most of these foods are outside of your normal diet as it stands now, you can still grow many of the annual crops you grow elsewhere if grown in the right part of the year. Your best growing season is from fall through winter. Summer is the worst time to grow any annual crop due to all the bugs but it can be done and I am doing it right now.

One thing to consider when growing food in Florida is agroforestry. Being from up north you are use to allot of annual crops but if you adjust your mindset you can have the trees generate all the fruits/nuts/spices you need with a small garden to give you those vegetables/herbs/small fruits you are use to.

We get plenty of rain in Florida (unless you are use to the Pacific Northwest).
It’s funny to hear you act like Pennsylvania gets more rain then Florida, because the facts are we get drenched compared to Pennsylvania. If you don’t believe me check the facts (“Only the facts ma’am”). Check the statistics at the following two URLs:

Florida Rain

Pennsylvania Rain

As far as livestock is concerned, Florida is the second largest beef producing state in the nation. While cattle lose weight during the winter in other states, they keep packing on the pounds during our winter because of the very mild winter and everlasting pasture. You livestock could cool off under those trees I suggested planting if it gets too hot.

I hope I have proved to you that Florida has its place in agriculture. All in all it comes down to what you like. If you don’t like the heat I don’t blame you, but if you are in Florida air conditioning is just a way of life. If you want snow, well go elsewhere because although it has happened before, it does not snow here! If you want mountains, too bad we don’t have those. What we do have are beaches, warm weather, the everglades, and the ocean. If you like freshwater or saltwater fishing, any ocean sports (surfing, jet skiing, buggy boarding, paralleling, wind surfing, water skiing, etc.), warm weather, offloading in the swamps, mountain biking (we have some good trails without the mountains), theme parks, south beach nightlife, then this is the place for you. Florida’s real estate prices are sky rocketing for a reason. A lot of people like what they find here. I never have been a big fan of the heat but there are many people here who love it. I to love the mountain views, fall colors, and cooler weather found in other states. My personal opinion is it’s getting too crowed here and I will eventually pack up and move. But that does not change the facts, you can grow a lot of food here any way you look at it.
 
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Like I stated in the above message "much more", I don't want to list everything. Here are some more resources that should be of help:

Citrus
Common Tropical Fruit
Exotic Tropical Fruit
Melons
Berries (if you have the right verieties you can grow most of these)

On another note while we are not as large of a grain state as the plains states we do grow them. But when it comes to field crops our most notable would have to be sugarcane. Also the following site will give you an idea when to grow some of the popular crops found in Florida (harvest times are listed). http://www.florida-agriculture.com/marketing/seasonal_availability.htm
 
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