December 1, 2012

What Say You, Wise Ones?




These lovely, golden orbs hang delightfully over my side fence ... there are dozens of ripening oranges ... so what say you, wise people ... are they mine?  What is the proper etiquette for fruit hanging over a fence line? Do I harvest them when ready and take them to my friendly neighbor or do I casually pluck a few here and there for a sweet snack?  Please do share your thoughts ... I'm eager to hear what you have to say.

"Neighbors, I'm on the fence about them." 
                                                                                                                        Jarod Kintz


18 comments:

  1. Legally, they are yours. Really. My mother had an issue with a neighbor's tree growing over the fence and above her roof. She wanted the neighbors to cut those tree limbs that were on her roof, and they wouldn't. She found out that the problem was hers because the law, in the state of Texas, decrees that what is on your side of the fence is yours.

    In your case: Yum! Laura

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  2. I can't imagine that your neighbor would be at all bothered by you harvesting a few oranges to enjoy. Maybe you could do a little swap. Give the neighbor a little starter plant or something from your own garden. I love a fresh orange pulled from a branch. Do they sweeten with cooler weather, I wonder?

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  3. It's not quite as simple as whatever hangs over your side is legally yours. It is still their tree and the fruit belongs to them. The issue is if they have to stand on your property to harvest or trim. In the case of Laura's mom they would have had to access someone else's property and it became the other property owner's problem to remove certain limbs. The tree did not change ownership.

    I would offer to pick them and good neighbors should offer some in return.

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  4. I would either ask the neighbors if you can have the fruit on your side or wait until they are ripe, see if the neighbor is harvesting. If not then why not have a few. My son has the same problem in Arizona. The fruits just stay on the tree until they rot. Most people who grow the fruit there don't seem to eat it! Why, I don't know. I know, I'm eating mine. Is that a satsuma because it looks very healthy. Doubt I could grow it here but if I were you I'd be planting my own.

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  5. Even though they seem to be your's, what a great opportunity to meet a neighbor bearing edible goodies! Not only might they be nice people about it, but it might keep one of *those* landscape people from convincing them to cut it down.

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  6. What a great dilemma! I guess I do have several black walnut trees that extend over into the neighbor's property. And.. they can have all they want! Now oranges would be a little different, probably because I can't imagine having a tree in my yard with fresh oranges-how wonderful! I'd probably ask...

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  7. If nothing else, it's a good way to meet the neighbors if you don't know them, by asking about the oranges.

    Our Valencia oranges are just starting to ripen here...looking forward to them. Yummmmm.

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  8. Oh, forgot...sorry...just because the fruits are orange in color, doesn't mean they are ripe. Some types turn orange long before they get sweet (edible).

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  9. Harvest & Enjoy!!! (I might ask the neighbours ... but if they are hanging into your space, then they are kinda on your property and yours to pick. IMHO).

    Lovely photos :)

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  10. Beautiful! And I agree with Lancashire Rose. Used to have a similar dilemma with the neighbor's pear tree, but the squirrels would steal the fruit before I ever got to make a decision. Hope you enjoy a juicy harvest!

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  11. A great neighbor "problem" to have. I agree - the color is not all there is to fruit being ready to eat. Perhaps you could approach your neighbor, let them know you have fruit hanging on your side of the fence and offer to pick the fruit "for them" after they let you know when it is ready to eat? It is almost certain they will offer to share. In the meantime, not a bad view.....

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  12. I would ask the neighbor if they minded you harvesting some, or if they want them all. I'm sure they would share, and you wouldn't have any feelings of doubt or guilt. Enjoy!

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  13. They're yours. That's the policy we follow here in Tucson:)

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  14. I would for surely eat them up as my own.

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  15. I would say take the high road and harvest them; some for you and the rest for your neighbor...if they say whatever hangs over is yours great...there probably is a law about this but it is more about being kind and respectful...so since they hang over and you are harvesting you keep some...

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  16. They'll never eat all those. Our neighbors take ours and I could care less- I told her the other day in fact to take them. We could never eat them all- I don't pick a lot on the side that faces our porch cause I just like how they look but at the back that faces her I don't see them anyway so told her to have at it. I bet they wouldn't care but you could always just ask or tell her how tempting they look staring at you- odds are she'll say help yourself.
    Better to share-bet she/they feel the same.

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  17. Hopefully you'll have a chance to casually discuss it with your neighbor. If the neighbor is kindly, I'm sure he/she wouldn't mind at all if you picked the ones on your side. I would be delighted to share a harvest like that! Lucky you!

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  18. I think it rather depends on the relationship you have - and want to have - with your neighbour! They are indeed yours to do with as you will, but if you get on well it might be worth asking if they mind, just to keep things friendly. People can get very funny about boundaries, in all senses...

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Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind.
"Pooh!" he whispered.
"Yes, Piglet?"
"Nothing," said Piglet, taking Pooh's paw. "I just wanted to be sure of you."
~A.A. Milne

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