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May 6 / Jeff

Pomegranates – Good or Bad?

It’s rare that you can find a fruit tree that is actually suited for the desert climate. The pomegranate is one of those rare trees. Native to Persia, it has been cultivated throughout the Mediterranean region for quite some time. So this means it can handle the heat and even drought-like conditions. And it does not require a lot of winter chilling hours, typically about 100-200 hours are sufficient. Perfect.

So last year I decided to give it a try and purchased a pomegranate tree, ‘Sweet’ variety, from Willis Orchard, a nursery based out of Georgia. The one thing I like about Willis Orchard is that you can choose the size of a tree you want, ranging anywhere from a 6″ cutting all the way up to a full-sized 13′ tree. Of course, the price goes up too, but in the grand scheme of things, it’s actually not that expensive. If you were to find a  7′ tree at a local nursery, such as Moon Valley (booo) or Whitfill (yay), it would probably reside in a  24″ box, easily costing you $200-300+ plus delivery. At Willis Orchards, how about less than $100 including shipping?

So this Spring brought a lot of nice red flowers, but none of them developed into pomegranates and just ended up falling off. Until I saw something interesting yesterday:

These things are so expensive in grocery stores, so if I can get a few of these in my backyard, even better. I’ll have to keep a close eye on this one and hope it grows to a nice size…

5 Comments

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  1. Sam Kelsall / Oct 16 2011

    Jeff If you are running out of space. I am involved in several community gardens on Broadway around 24th street in Phoenix. We could use some of your expertise and fruit trees. You can grow pomegranates from seed. They will probably be variety Wonderful because that is the predominant variety around here.

    Sam Kelsall
    602-349-0914

  2. Michelle / Feb 15 2014

    Hi Jeff,

    Have you tried to grow avocados here? I’d like to give it a try and am not sure which variety might be best?

    Thank you
    Michelle

    • Jeff / Feb 17 2014

      Hi Michelle,

      I haven’t tried avocados since our summers are extremely hot and winters can be cold (freezing). It is possible to grow them here, but you will need to create a microclimate for them. Protect them from the intense summer sun and also protect them from any freeze/frost events during the winter. The other important thing is to make sure the soil is well-draining and be sure to irrigate them deeply, as they are sensitive to salt build-up. Mexican varieties are the hardiest for our area.

      Good luck!

      Jeff

  3. Diane / Feb 18 2015

    Hello

    Which trees bears fruit in March, April and September?

  4. Jeff / Feb 18 2015

    Hi Diane,

    Not many fruit trees will produce that early in the season (March/April), with the exception of some citrus like Valencia oranges and grapefruit.

    September is also a tough month, since it’s right after summer. You will only be able to find fruits like figs and pomegranates during this time.

    Jeff

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