Ask a Question forum: fruit trees

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Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

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texaskitty111
Aug 12, 2014 6:44 PM CST
Anyone ever tried dwarf peach (or any fruit) trees? Are the fruits normal sizes, do you get less? About 50% of normal, or what?

Anyone ever tried a fruit tree with more than one variety on the same tree? Does it really extend the season?

We have no information about Burgess Seed and Plant Company on the green pages. Anyone have a good experience with ordering from them?
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
So Cal (Zone 10b)
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OldGardener
Aug 12, 2014 6:53 PM CST
I have, Texaskitty. On the dwarf peach, the fruit was full-sized but I never got a lot of it. I have 4 in 1 apples but 1 variety died off on each tree (weaker, smaller graft). I am thrilled with the semi-dwarfs, though, and that is all I grow, now (except for the citrus - they are full-sized). The semi-dwarf trees get anywhere from 12-15 feet tall depending on the type and give huge amounts of fruit.

I am familiar with burgess but cannot recommend them.
"In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." -Abraham Lincoln
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

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texaskitty111
Aug 12, 2014 9:37 PM CST
Thanks! Where do you buy semi dwarfs? And, do you buy from local venders? What type of peach do you think tastes best?
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
So Cal (Zone 10b)
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OldGardener
Aug 12, 2014 9:50 PM CST
We bought ours from the local nursery and we actually have 3 different types of peaches growing. 2 are yellow freestones for cooking and baking (August Pride and I cannot recall the name of the other right now but it looks similar to Eva's Pride and its flush comes in May) and then we have the white saturn/donut primarily for eating. You will have a lot more choices than we did given that you are in a cooler zone. What varieties do you have in mind?
"In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." -Abraham Lincoln
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

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texaskitty111
Aug 12, 2014 9:59 PM CST
Well, I know absolutely nothing about peaches, except I like them. Mostly for baking. That's why I asked what you like. Would you say yellow freestones are better for that?
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
So Cal (Zone 10b)
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OldGardener
Aug 12, 2014 10:22 PM CST
I definitely prefer the yellow freestones for baking. The white donuts are great for fresh eating but they don't have enough acidity for my taste to make a great pie. Smiling
"In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." -Abraham Lincoln
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
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dyzzypyxxy
Aug 12, 2014 10:33 PM CST
We get citrus trees here with up to 5 different kinds, orange, grapefruit, lemon, lime and tangerine for example, on one tree. From what I've heard, they are just a gimmick, like blue orchids . . .

I have had at least 3 friends who tried a so-called 'fruit salad' tree. Everyone says that after a few years (which it takes for the tree to start bearing at all) they have ended up with only one type of fruit on the tree, and it seems that whichever variety is the strongest grower, it overwhelms all the rest and 'takes over'. Honestly don't know if this would happen with other fruits, but it sure is a possibility. I think it's a much better bet if you have room, to just buy trees of one good variety for your area. If you want 3 types of peach, buy 3 trees.

Your friends and neighbors are a good resource for finding what kinds grow well - and which taste good! - where you live. Your County Extension service, or local Ag university would also be great people to ask.

As far as dwarf trees go, I'm sure it varies but I have seen some beautiful dwarf citrus here that bear very well, plenty of fruit for a couple or small family from one small tree. A full-sized tree often gives you so much fruit you don't know what to do with it all. And yes, dwarf trees bear normal sized fruit. It's just the tree itself that stays smaller than normal because it is grafted on a dwarf rootstock.

Up in British Columbia at the house where I grew up, my Dad had a favorite dwarf apple tree that only grew about 5ft. tall but it would bear a nice large box of apples every fall after it was mature. Cox's Orange Pippin, as I recall . . . an old English variety.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
So Cal (Zone 10b)
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OldGardener
Aug 13, 2014 12:42 PM CST
Texaskitty, have you seen this site: http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/archives/parsons/publicat... ? It lists different fruits and their cultivars that do well in Texas. It also recommends rootstock for the type of soil you may have. Smiling

This pdf solely deals with peaches and it is detailed. It also breaks down Texas into chill hour zones : http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/fruit-nut/files/2010/10/p... . At the end of the PDF, they have a fairly healthy list of peaches that are known to do well in the great state and lists the chilling requirements for each. 'Hope this is helpful Smiling
"In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." -Abraham Lincoln
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

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texaskitty111
Aug 13, 2014 1:30 PM CST
It is, I will look at it. Thanks. I'm sort of discouraged about the several years it takes to start producing. I have stopped planting anything that takes more than 1. Feel like I'm doing all the work for someone else. Its doable to restart a garden else, but I can't move a tree.
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
So Cal (Zone 10b)
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OldGardener
Aug 13, 2014 1:49 PM CST
I know what you mean - it can be discouraging. One reason we went to the local nursery to pick out the trees ourselves was so we could get the best looking ones (wider trunks, beefier than most, etc.). If I remember correctly, we did get some fruit by year 3 and by year 5 or 6, they were really starting to produce (enough to freeze and can). But it can be discouraging when having to wait.
"In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." -Abraham Lincoln
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
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dyzzypyxxy
Aug 13, 2014 2:30 PM CST
Well, they do add value to the property when you sell, but I'm with you, I wouldn't invest in fruit trees unless you know you're going to be there at least 5 years. If you're renting, forget it!
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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Weedwhacker
Aug 13, 2014 9:19 PM CST
“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” – Chinese Proverb

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Name: Tom
Southern Wisconsin (Zone 5b)
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tveguy3
Aug 14, 2014 3:58 AM CST
I have gotten really nice quality peach and apricot trees from Grandpa's Orchard. If the tree doesn't grow they replace it. I have some dwarf apples, and some Semi Dwarf apple trees. The dwarf is easy to care for, fruit is normal size, just less of it.
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Name: Tom Cagle
SE-OH (Zone 6a)
Old, fat, and gardening in OH
Coppice
Aug 14, 2014 9:39 AM CST
Um um. dwarf--semi dwarf root stocks. The smallest tend to make changes to the crown of trees (oh, things like brittle wood etc), as well as a shorter life span.

IMO of more import to you is are you making a plantation of a few or a few acres? For just plain fewer trees, I'd select semi-dwarf root stocks IMO the resulting tree bears loads of fruit better and its up to you, as to how small you prune it. Very dwarf cultivars makes more trees per acre and may nominally increase per acre yields.

Multi-grafting: Top woods are not all created equal, The more varieties you graft onto a tree the greater the chances are for one or more of that top wood to hog out the rest. If you can't prune them into balance, go with a solitary graft, and keep the battle down to root-stock and scion-wood.

Time between plantation and harvest: well, if you're really into arbor culture, then at some time you going to do some of you own grafting. So that never again are you all out of trees. This is how you keep your plantation available to you. Peaches are going to be prone to pests that even if you spray, will kill trees. Grafting your own is the entry price to a steady harvest.

Of even more import than spraying or grafting, you need to find-read and understand chilling hours and how many your site gets. (and how many your tree needs) The fewer chilling hours your trees need could indicate too early bloom. or if your tree need too many compared to what the site gives, inconsistant bloom.

Trees with declaired resistance to fire blight or other pest resistance, are not low maintenence trees. They need appropriate care. if you don't mess with the breeding cycle of pest bugs or disease, they are gonna eat your crop, and not you.

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