Soursop tree is a shrub with different other names including Guayabano, Graviola, and Babana. It is famous for its delicious fruits and you must know about it. Thus, it is surely a matter of concern if your soursop tree flowers but no fruit appears.
Many gardeners out there have come in front of this same problem. Soursop fruit has a nice flavor with almost 68% edible white pulp. But surely your soursop tree is not going to bear fruit just like that.
The first thing for any tree to bear fruit from flowers is to go through the pollination process. So, if your soursop tree only flowers but does not bear any fruit that means pollination did not occur when it flowered. However, there might be some reasons for pollination not taking place like lack of pollinators or other environmental and intercultural issues.
Hence, to know why the tree is not fruiting and how can you make your soursop tree bear fruit, bear with us till the last. Hopefully, you will know everything regarding the topic.
Reason Why My Soursop Tree is Not Fruiting
1. Pollination Not Taking Place
We have already mentioned that pollination is the key to fruiting. This is not exceptional for the Soursop tree as well.
Without pollination. the tree will not fruit even if it flowers. Nonetheless, pollination of soursop flowers occurs through beetles and honeybees. But unfortunately, if your area and its environment do not allow them to come near the flowers then pollination will not occur.
The fogged environment is not suitable for the beetles and honeybees to come and pollinate. Therefore, the shrub is adapted to tropical climates with a warm and humid environment.
Moreover, pollination can be interrupted by human acts as well. If you apply pesticide during its flowering period, it will cause the death of the beetles and other insects. Consequently, the flowers will remain unpollinated.
2. Application of Pesticides or Insecticides
If you apply insecticide or pesticide to the surroundings of your soursop tree then it will also interrupt the pollination process by killing the beetles. Hence, professionals suggest not applying any pesticides or insecticides when the soursop tree is blooming.
3. Biological Structure
Again, there is another reason for your soursop tree not bearing fruit which is the flowers of soursop are protandrous. Hence, the male parts of the flower mature faster than the female parts. That is why they also shed pollen before the female parts become ready to receive the pollen.
Consequently, the pollens fall on the ground from the flower. So, the pollination process fails here.
4. Fruit Production Cycle
Many fruit trees obtain cycles of production. That means if the tree yields fewer fruits than the previous year then most probably it will offer a higher yield the next year. Your soursop tree might also maintain the same cycle.
5. Age of the Soursop Tree
After a certain age, all fruit trees will reduce their fruit production. Again, the tree has to reach a certain age to bloom profusely and then produce fruit. A soursop nursery tree takes about 5-6 years to offer fruits. So, if your baby soursop tree is only blooming but not fruiting then this might be another reason.
Are Soursop Trees Self-Pollinating?
Since pollination is the only way to make the soursop bear fruits on it you might ask if the soursop trees are self-pollinating.
Well, the answer is no. Soursop trees are hermaphroditic yet their flowers cannot self-fertilize. If biology is not your thing, then let us be clearer to you! Trees that are self-pollinators grow flowers with both male and female parts.
Whereas trees that are not self-pollinators have different female and male blossoms. However, both types grow in the same plant. Soursop trees are exactly the same type.
Moreover, the reproductive system of the Soursop bloom is dichogamous. It means the stigma of the flower is receptive to the stamens of the male part that contains pollen grain in it.
Only when this receptivity occurs, do the blooms obtain full development and later turn into fruit.
How to Make Soursop Tree to Bear Fruits
Since your soursop tree only offers blooms but no fruits then surely you have to ensure the pollination anyhow. Hence, many professional gardeners perform hand-pollination to bring fruits to the soursop.
Hand Pollination in Soursop Tree
First of all, let’s know what is meant by hand pollination. Well, hand pollination is the process of inducing the natural process of bearing fruits in fruit or even vegetable trees. It is done when beetles or honeybees are not available in the environment.
Therefore, it is one of the best methods to promote fruit production from blooms in guanabana or soursop trees. To achieve this method, notice the following steps.
Collecting the Pollen
Since we have already mentioned that in the soursop tree, the male blossoms appear first compared to the female ones. Nonetheless, the female blossoms turn into small fruit after receiving the pollen. Hence, hand pollination is the easiest way.
Therefore, first thing is to collect the pollen from the male soursop blooms. To get the best result collect them in the morning when the flowers first open.
Now, to collect the pollen, first, open the stamen at the flower center. With a close view, you will find the pollen clinging to the part. Now take the pollen with the help of a paintbrush and put it in a polybag. However, you can also use your fingers to collect the pollen.
Storing the Pollen
After collecting the pollen from the male blossoms of the soursop tree, store it in a refrigerator. Storing for one night is enough.
Transfer the Pollen
After storing the pollen overnight, perform the next step the next morning. You will find a sticky site in the flower center that will act like a receptive.
Once you find the place, transfer the pollen. For transferring the pollen dab cotton into the pollen and then brush the pollen against the stigma.
The entire process of hand pollination is a steady process. Hence, you also need to be very careful. However, if the pollination becomes successful then you will see how beautifully the flowers are turning into fruits.
Other Factors Affecting Soursop Fruit Production with Treatment Guide
1. Land and Soil
There is no specific soil requirement for a soursop tree. However, it is better if the soil is loamy, deep, and rich in nutrients.
However, the soursop tree cannot tolerate highly acidic or alkaline soil. It will not allow them to grow better fruit. Even the soil may not allow better blooming as well.
- Make sure you are sowing seeds of a soursop tree where the soil is deep loamy.
- Determine the pH of the soil with a pH meter. Make sure the soil pH is 6.1 to 6.5. Amend the soil if it is too acidic or alkaline. (Our Pick: XLUX Soil Moisture Meter)
Fertilization can be another reason for your guanabana not producing any fruit. Excessive application or less application could be the reason.
Generally, a soursop tree takes about 3 to 5 years from its sowing to produce fruits. Hence, there are chances to get the best result if you sow seed within one month after the first harvesting.
Proper fertilization is required for any fruit tree to grow fruit. The application of fertilizer surely increases the growth of a tree since the soil always cannot offer all the nutrients the tree requires.
After about one month of planting a soursop tree, you can start applying fertilizer containing 21-0-0 parts of ammonium sulfate. Urea application is also required. Hence, try to apply the best fertilizer for the soursop tree available in the market. (Our Pick: Dr. Earth Organic Fruit Tree Fertilizer)
Gradually, when the soursop tree grows it also increases the dose of fertilizer requirement. Hence, when the tree reaches its fruiting stage, it requires approximately 250 to 300 grams of fertilizer.
So, when you cannot supply the right amount of fertilizer in the fruiting stage, surely it will affect fruit production.
Again, an excessive amount of fertilizer application can also bring the opposite result. It might also stop the fruiting process of flowers.
- Ensure 10-10-10 ratio fertilizer application at least four times a year.
- Apply fertilizer when the rainy season ends otherwise the rain will take away the fertilizer.
- To have more effective results, you can also use micronutrients as well as organic fertilizers.
- Moreover, if the weather is too hot and dry, then you can also try on mulch application under its canopy.
It is true that the soursop tree can survive through dry conditions. It is resistant to drought. But that does not mean the tree will survive its lifetime without water.
Any fruit tree requires regular watering for its fruit production. Nothing is exceptional with soursop as well. Watering is a must for healthy growth. If you leave the tree without watering for a longer period of time, then it will cause leaf shedding.
As a result, at a certain point, it will also cause the death of the soursop tree.
- Apply supplementary water to the soursop tree during drought conditions.
- After sowing seeds of the tree, apply water at least two to three times a week until the tree gets mature.
5. Pests and Diseases
Needless to say, pests and diseases are highly destructive to a tree’s fruit production. Stunting the growth of the tree, these elements do not let a tree bloom or produce fruit.
However, compared to other fruit trees, soursop is quite resistant to pests and diseases. Yet, there can be several pests that can attack the tree including mealy bugs, root grubs, scale insects, fruit flies, carpenter moth larva, and others.
Moreover, talking about the diseases, the guanabana tree can suffer from anthracnose, pink diseases, root rot, or some other diseases.
These diseases can be destructive at times. Some attack after the tree flowers and do not allow the plant to create fruit.
Some pests and diseases are also the reason why the soursop tree is producing smaller and immature fruits.
- Obtain a crop protection plant before planting the soursop tree in your garden.
- The plan should include a proper farm management system as well.
- Apply sanitation throughout the entire soursop tree garden,
- Burn away the diseased plant parts
- Also, ensure disposal of fallen fruits.
- Again, obtain chemical, biological, or organic control measures for pests and diseases.
Pruning is one of the most important intercultural operations that you have to perform to get the utmost production.
Hence, pruning a tree is difficult as well. Not every gardener out there knows how to prune their soursop tree. Wrong pruning will not allow the tree to offer fruit any further.
Pruning is mainly done to the branches and dead parts of the plant to let the air and light come to all the plant parts.
If you prune the green part of the plant then it will affect the entire mechanism of flower and fruit production of the tree.
- Obtain pruning before the tree flowers.
- While pruning makes sure to disperse the places where light and air cannot go.
- Make sure you remove decaying and diseased branches, twigs, and water sprouts through pruning.
7. Harvesting Period
The harvesting period could be another reason why the soursop is not fruiting well. The tree flowers all year round. However, the peak season for Soursop to bloom is from May to June.
Nonetheless, when the fruits properly develop and get mature but still remain green, it is the right time for harvesting.
Moreover, not all fruits of a soursop tree become mature at the same time. Hence, you cannot just pick all of them at the same time.
- Try to harvest fruit at the right time. Otherwise, you may not get the best yield in the next year.
- Practice selective harvesting since not all fruits develop at the same time.
- Pick the fruits when their color becomes yellowish green or dull green from shiny green.
Now that you know all the possible reasons why your Soursop tree flowers but has no fruit, then find out what is the actual reason. And then take action accordingly.
Going through pollination can bring fruits to trees. Thus, you better check if the environment where you have your Soursop tree is allowing the tree to have pollination.
So, if our article was helpful for you then let us know!
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