can i keep a van cherry on mahaleb short, byoc or ufo style?

NilaJones(7b)March 17, 2013

Yeah, I didn't think so :(((.

(Also, I'd appreciate feedback on whether it was a good idea to move this to a new thread or not, as I'm new and don't know the customs here.)

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fruitnut Z7 4500ft SW TX


You can keep it short by pruning enough. The real questions are how much trouble and will it be productive. Maybe so because Van is so precocious. But I won't try it. I'd get a tree on one of the dwarf roots especially if you really want to keep it 4-5ft tall. The UFO trees are 8-9ft and I believe that's on something like Gisela 5.

I could be wrong so give it a try. That's how we learn.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2013 at 8:36PM
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Thank you fruitnut :).

Also, where did my capital letters in the title go? I put them in...

    Bookmark   March 17, 2013 at 10:20PM
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One thread would have been better.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 1:57AM
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Thank you, Waiting. I have known forums where people get annoyed if someone doesn't start a new thread and the topic drifts, and forums where it's the other way round :).

I hope I have not been annoying folks in general with my obsessing over this situation. I realise I have been overly attached to using this Van now that I have it. Thing is, it is rather late for mail order where I live -- I prefer to plant in January. I just hate to lose a year, you know?

Unless you guys tell me it's a really terrible plan, I might just move the compact stella to this ufo-appropriate location.

It is little and already has a curve and will be so much easier to net than where it is now. If it were a plant I am familiar with, I would do it. But are fruit trees more delicate? (Recap: I just planted it two weeks ago and would have to rinse its roots due to weed-seed issues, so it would be reestablishing its connections with the soil and microorganisms. Fruitnut seemed to say I should not.)

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 5:08PM
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My experience is that trees are very forgiving. I'd move it but not wash it. You can deal with any weeds later.

As far as being "too late" to order trees, I just ordered 4 more and I'm in California where it was 80 degrees one day last week. And they'll be fine.


    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 5:54PM
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alan haigh

You can keep any fruit any height you want if you let low branches grow out long enough to reach maturity. A cherry can be grown next to the ground if you keep tying down branches to prostate position. Elevation won't affect maturity, it is cutting back wood that keeps trees juvenile.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 7:08PM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

Here in SoCal, Tom Spellman from Dave Wilson Nurseries says you can keep them at any height you want....just a matter of more summer pruning. But we can prune here in summer, not sure about your zone.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 10:19PM
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drew51 SE MI Z5b/6a

In the UK they keep cherry trees small by espalier technique. With cherries you can do a fan. I read a little about it in Growing Fruit by Harry Baker from The Royal Horticultural Society. Seems like a better way to approach BYOC, for cherries from the people who have been doing BYOC for decades, the Brits! Gisela rootstock though might not work well with this technique? Unsure?

    Bookmark   March 22, 2013 at 11:39AM
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