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I have a tamarillo tree that gets lots of fruit then they all drop off while still very small. It is in exactly the same spot as a previous tamarillo that did really well until it got too old. My soil is quite heavy so I know it doesn’t dry out.

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Tamarillo like free draining soil and your heavy soil may be troubling your new tree. Although your previous tamarillo performed well in the same spot the condition of the soil and the original ground preparation may have been different. Preparation of your soil that can help is to dig a hole 3 times the size of the root ball. Penetrate holes into the earth and dust the dug hole and soil with Gypsum ? available at your Palmers store. The Gypsom is a soil conditioner to use on clay soil. Next replace your soil with a mix of 1/3 of the earth dug out of your hole and 2/3 new garden soil, use a bagged compost purchased from your retailer. Do not use potting mix as soil that is too free draining will dry out your Tamarillo as they like moist conditions. Prepare your planting site to create a mound that your Tamarillo will be planted into. This mound will elevate your plant out of the heavy soil but ensure it is not too steep that the plants roots will not dry out. An even ?hill? shape is ideal. Next fertilise with a general all purpose fertisiler; Tamarillo like soil high in potassium, magnesium and nitrogen. They also like high levels of manure and a good dose of sheep pellets from your store will be ideal. Pest control ? check your Tamarillo for aphid and white fly as these can carry virus that can affect your plants health and fruit production. Pruning is also important as an unpruned tree will yield more fruit but the fruit will be smaller. Are the fruit ripe when they drop? The fruit may be ripe and dropping as they should but perhaps just small for reasons of a good prune being needed. You can take your tree size right back to the basic framework of trunk and a few branches as the tree fruits on new seasons wood. Prune between August and December when fruit has finished, then next year you should have a good sized fruit.

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