The Q&A Archives: Harvesting Wonderful Pomegranate's

Question: I have a "Wonderful Pomegranate Bush" I know next to nothing about this wonderful plant. It has three pomegranates on it now. One is bright red and beautiful, when do I pick the fruit? When/How do I know when it's ready for picking? When is the season over and do I prune it, and if so how far do I cut it back?

Answer: Pomegranate (Punica granatum) is a deciduous tree or shrub that grows best in full sunshine and needs very little
water once established. The leaves are narrow, begin with a bronzy color, turn glossy bright green in summer, and may turn yellow in the autumn months. 'Wonderful' is the best known fruiting pomegranate. It grows to about 10' tall , has a fountain-shape, produces orange-red flowers about 4" across in the spring, and sets fruit that matures in late summer or early autumn. Pomegranates tolerate average to alkaline soil and will adapt to growing in containers. To keep your pomegranate from spreading, prune out shoots that form at the base. To keep height in check, trim back the current season's shoots in the winter, after the leaves have fallen. And prune out any dead wood.
The fruits ripen 6 to 7 months after flowering. Growers generally consider the fruit ready for harvest if it
makes a metallic sound when tapped. The fruit must be picked before over maturity when it tends to crack open if rained upon or under certain conditions of atmospheric humidity, dehydration by winds, or insufficient irrigation.

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