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Arctic Frost™ Hardy Satsuma is Best for Cold-Tolerance

Author: Geri Laufer   | October 16, 2012

Perfect for the ornamental edible garden, horticulturists, landscapers and home gardeners in Southern states will have the best chances of harvesting fruit when planting delicious, nearly seedless Arctic Frost™ Hardy Satsuma directly in the ground. The colorful orange fruits make a striking display contrasted against the dark green, glossy leaves.  

Part of the gardener’s art is to grow plants in areas where they wouldn’t normally flourish.  Those pushing the envelope with plant hardiness should try their hand with Arctic Frost™ Hardy Satsuma Mandarin Oranges from Garden Debut®. Alternatively, these small trees are easily grown in large containers across the country, and brought into shelter during cold winter in Northern states.


These evergreen trees are self-fertile and will produce an amazing amount of fruit. The fruit of Arctic Frost™ Hardy Satsuma is round, medium in size, slightly necked, a bright, intense orange color. It is sweet-tart in flavor and reaches maximum sweetness as it hangs on the tree like golden gems.  Tree-ripened fruit is sweeter than any found in grocery stores and supplies fresh vitamin C all winter. The fruits are nearly seedless with an average of less than 1.3 seeds per fruit.

Satsumas are easy-peel and known as the “kid-glove” fruit. Accordingly, Arctic Frost™ Hardy Satsuma has a thin, leathery skin dotted with aromatic oil glands that is useful in recipes as the source of zest; for stove-top simmering potpourri; and for use in making Satsuma-cello liqueur.   


To date, Arctic Frost™ Hardy is one of the most cold-tolerant Satsumas that can be grown, enabling successful fruit production in areas where winter temperatures do not dip below 12 to 15 degrees Fahrenheit for any length of time. Blooms and new foliage emerge later than other citrus, after all chance of frost is past, indicative of its hardiness.


In areas that get only occasional temperatures this low, enterprising gardeners can shelter the small tree with a covering of fabric and a poly tarp, weighted to the ground forming a tent to gather and trap heat from the earth. Another strategy is to include a few incandescent light bulbs or old-fashioned, heat-producing Christmas tree lights underneath to add a few degrees overnight. Growing these plants next to a south-facing wall or under a bit of high shade will also offer a degree or two of protection and the use of an anti-transpirant will also help. At some point get too large to cover. Older trees do withstand cold temperature drops more easily so mounded soil, mulch or hay can be stacked as high up the trunk as feasible for protection. 


Arctic Frost™ Hardy Satsuma is drought tolerant after it is established, and likes to dry slightly before being watered, therefore it should  not be grown in poorly draining areas. The overall shape is spreading and and trees reach 10 – 12 feet tall and 10 feet wide, and about half that when grown in large containers.  

For more information about Arctic Frost™ Hardy Satsuma and other great new plants from Garden Debut®, visit www.gardendebut.com.

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