How do I grow tropical fruits in the home garden?
The idea of salivating over a tasty tropical fruit as it ripens in one’s backyard is a tempting one, however, it is important to be realistic about the chances of success depending on your location. While coastal Queensland is the obvious place to be if you want to be sure, it is possible to succeed in southern gardens if you can provide a suitable microclimate. An ideal spot is a north facing stone or brick wall that will absorb heat during the day and radiate it to the plant at night.
As well as the obvious candidates such as mangoes, paw paws and bananas some of the lesser known tropical and subtropical fruits that are becoming increasingly available from nurseries include lychees, longans, carambolas, sapodillos, feijoas, cherry guavas, casimiroas and custard apples. All of the fruits mentioned above are shrubs or trees that require relatively deep well-drained soil and as warm a position as possible. Some species will tolerate light frosts so it is worth checking with your local garden centre as to which ones will grow and fruit well in your area.