What kind of cherry trees for Zone 9?

Gryffindor4November 19, 2011

I'm having a hard time finding cherry trees that will grow in Zone 9 (Florida). Anyone know of any?

And the same with apple trees. I believe Fuji apples grow here, but I'm not sure what else, other than crab apples.

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No true prunus avium cherry will, not enough chill hours. Cherry of the Rio Grande Eugenia aggregata will however, a tropical cherry hardy to 20F. In fact depending on where in zone 9 there are many tropical eugenia "cherries" you can grow. Don't expect them to taste very good however. I was disappointed enough to cut down my mature CORG. I live several hundred miles north of you and it never had freeze damage.

Here is a link that might be useful: mrtexas

    Bookmark   November 19, 2011 at 1:32PM
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You can grow ein shimer, anna, dorset. However, the fruit that I tasted of these aren't as good as grocery store fruit, the reason I don't bother with them as well as the spraying they will require. I let my friends experiment with them instead. The whole point of growing fruit I think is to get better quality that grocery store. You will have to have two different varieties too.

You are in the citrus belt. Grow citrus and have much better luck than the marginal "cherries" and apples you can grow.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2011 at 1:36PM
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I currently live in Northern MI, but I'd like to be able to grow a garden in a southern area of the United States.

This eventually would include fruit trees.

I'm not sure where, it would be zone 8, 9, or 10. I'm thinking of Florida. In northern Florida, is it possible to grow the traditional varieties of apples and pears, since it's cooler up there, and gets more chill hours?

By 'traditional' I mean traditional, NOT the hybrids designed for southern states.

I also have this question regarding other fruit trees that are hard to grow in FL (or any southern state).

The ones I'm referring to are plum, peach, and quince.

Also, this is off topic, but are there varieties of bananas and mangoes that you could still grow in zone 8 in northern Florida?

With the tropical fruit trees, again this is for future reference, as I know that where I live currently, my gardening season isn't long enough, climate is too cold for them, and gardening zone is too low.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2011 at 6:03PM
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Cherries can grow in zone 9, at least in California. I am not sure about Florida. It depends how many chill hours you get. Historical data about your average chill hours per year is often available on local websites.

Here in northern California we get around 600-1200 chill hours per year. Cherries do fine here, although the low chill varieties such as Minnie Royal and Royal Lee will fruit more consistently. There are a few newer low chill varieties as well. Look on the Dave Wilson nursery website for lists of cherries and the number of chill hours they require.

If you can grow Fuji apples in your location, you should be able to at least grow the low chill cherry varieties.


    Bookmark   November 19, 2011 at 8:25PM
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Guy is in FLORIDA and not CALIFORNIA. What you say is not correct for Florida with 100-200 chill hours.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2011 at 11:59PM
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Aww, that's a shame. Well, at least I can grow pretty much everything else I want. Maybe one day I'll try the CORG and other "cherries" that will grow here, what do they taste like?

    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 6:47AM
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Both Stella & Royal Rainier have fruited in Galveston. I have a Stella too young to fruit, but I bet it will.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 10:03AM
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Royal Lee/Minnie Lee sweet cherries are rated for about 300 chill hours. I know of a few people that put them in the last 2 years in the Orlando area. It's too early to say if they will do well. They do grow and flourish in Houston, according to my friends who are members of the Texas chapter of CRFG.

Golden Dorsett, Tropic Sweet (Developed by the University of Florida for growth in mid Florida), Anna, and a few local scions will also grow in Florida.

Take a look at the website for Just Fruits and Exotics. They grow fruit trees that work well in most of Florida.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 1:25PM
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Yes I realized he is in FLORIDA, that is why I said he should look up the chill hours for his specific location. Looking at the average chill hours for FLORIDA it looks like mid to northern FL get >200-300 chill hours. Depending upon where you live I would imagine that the low chill cherries would do fine, particularly considering that the chill hours listed on the Dave Wilson site (~300) are usually overly conservative. Again if Fuji fruits in your environment (Fuji is listed at 600 chill hours) then the low chill cherries should definitely be OK. It is worth giving it a try.


Here is a link that might be useful: FL chill hours

    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 1:42PM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

The problem with cherries in Florida isn't the chill it is the humidity

    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 3:13PM
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