WHAT ARE SATSUMAS?
SATSUMAS are a type of Mandarin Orange that, because of their growing characteristics, tend to thrive in the soil all along the extreme Southern Gulf States. SATSUMAS are sweet, have few if any seeds and peel easily. They are naturally high in Antioxidants, which promote health, and have many necessary nutrients as well as being a major source of Vitamin C. SATSUMAS are seasonal, in that they ripen yearly, typically between Thanksgiving and Christmas. SATSUMAS will keep in your kitchen like most Citrus and are best enjoyed ripe, picked straight off the tree. SATSUMAS can be squeezed for juice and made into numerous other Value Added products such as Jams and Jellies. You can also make Wine and Vinegar out of SATSUMAS. Their peel can be used to spice a meal or to flavor a beverage. SATSUMAS can be used in any way that other Citrus fruit can and the best part is that they are grown locally here on the Gulf Coast. Come out and pick some soon.
Ten Frequently Asked Questions And Answers
Question 1: Why should I “Pick My Own” rather than buy my Satsumas at the store?
Answer: When you pick your own Satsumas you know where and when they were grown and harvested. Citrus at the grocery store can be grown over seas, shipped, waxed and stored for long periods. Buy Local be healthy!
Question 2: Why harvest Satsumas in U-Pick Format?
Answer: Sunnyland Satsuma is Alabama’s First and Only dedicated Pick Your Own Satsuma Orchard. The Pick Your Own concept is an innovative marketing and distribution option that reduces the carbon footprint and, at the same time, allows people to get closer to the land for optimal family enjoyment.
Question 3: What is the difference between a Tangerine and a Satsuma?
Answer: Although both are Mandarin Oranges Tangerines have a thin skin, are hard to peel and lots of seeds. Satsumas have a thick skin that is easy to peel, few if any seeds and are much more sweet and juicy than Tangerines!
Question 4: What varieties of Satsumas are in the Sunnyland Satsuma orchard?
Answer: In the front of the orchard are “Owari:” Satsumas, In the middle :”Brown Select” and the little trees by the parking area are ”Armstrong Early:” Satsumas.
Question 5: How come store bought Satsumas are so orange?
Answer: Store bought Satsumas & citrus usually are sealed with a wax that has orange colored dye in it. This wax seals in the citrus juice so it doesn’t dry out while it is shipped and stored in a cooler for weeks at a time.
Question 6: What are those white pipe things at the base of each Satsuma tree?
Answer: Each tree has its own Irrigation spray emitter. These emitters deliver about 20 gallons of water per hour and, in addition to watering the trees when it’s dry, the sprayed water also protects the Satsuma trees during winter freezes. Please be careful not to step on them when harvesting, as they will break.
Question 7: How many pounds of Satsumas are on each tree?
Answer: Poundage per tree varies each year. On average a big tree can produce 300 to 400 pounds yearly. Six hundred pounds per tree is optimal!
Question 8: What happens to the Satsumas that are not picked by the end of harvest?
Answer: Annually thousands of pounds of Sunnyland Satsumas are harvested and donated to needy organizations. Although a Satsuma may be odd in its shape or have a pitted skin it is still tasty and good to eat.
Question 9: Why is the ground around each tree covered by the black material?
Answer: This “Ground Cover” keeps competing weeds and grasses from growing around the Satsuma trees. When competition is reduced the Satsuma trees grow faster and stronger.
Question 10: How long will Pick-Your-Own Satsumas last once picked off the Satsuma tree?
Answer: Depends, If you store your Satsumas in a cool, shaded place they can stay fresh for several weeks! If you put them in the refrigerator they will dry out quicker.