Fruit trees for zone 4

quirkybecApril 3, 2007

Hi everyone, I really hope there's someone out there that can help me. I am new to Gardenweb and not sure what's the best forum to use but here goes.

I am looking for a sour cherry and possibly a plum or apricot for my zone 4 garden. For the cherry I am leaning towards Carmine Jewel, although maybe a Romance series would be good (not readily available near me though). Worried that the Carmine Jewel will be more bushy than small tree.

For the apricot thinking Morden 604 or Scout but don't know which is best. Will they tolerate slight clay if on plum rootstock? Only want one, not thinking will be a problem, even if fruit production will be slightly lower.

For the plum, confused as to which will give the best fruit, would like to be able to eat fresh as well as for preserves. Considering Mont Royal or Damas Blue but have no idea really.

Other consideration: would like to have staggered harvests (i.e. cherry, apricot, plum not all ready at same time)- frightened of being overloaded! Think this is perfectly feasible.

My hubby is concerned about rotting fallen fruit and pests, but I think he is remembering a huge neglected apple of his childhood.

One last question, I have an ornamental cherry (I believe it is a prunus padus colorata) growing very well near by, is this any indication that the site wil be good for the other trees?

If anyone has any advice, I would be very grateful.

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bonniepunch(USDAz4 AgCanz5a)

If you're in the Montreal area, I would recommend dropping by this place: Jardin Jasmin. Their staff is quite knowledgeable and they have a huge selection. Even if you're not in the area, click on the fruits you are interested in and you'll see info like fruiting time, height, soil preferences and zones(the info is in French though, they have been 'working' on the English for over three years now :-)).

(one thing about zones - they use the Agriculture Canada zones, which are different from the USDA zones.)

In any event, pretty well all cherries fruit before pretty well all apricots and plums, and most apricots fruit before most plums. So it's almost certain to automatically stagger: cherries, apricots, and then plums, and only if you get huge super sweet apricots or small sour plums will the order change.

For the plum, confused as to which will give the best fruit, would like to be able to eat fresh as well as for preserves. Considering Mont Royal or Damas Blue but have no idea really.

I find that plums for eating and plums for preserving are quite different - at least that's the way I like them! I've had Mont Royal plums and found them quite tasty.

My hubby is concerned about rotting fallen fruit and pests, but I think he is remembering a huge neglected apple of his childhood.

Squirrels are a huge pest in my area. Deer can also be a pain in the rear. Birds can strip a cherry tree in no time too. It depends on what is in your area! Rotting fallen fruit can just be tossed on a compost pile, and that problem is solved.

BP

    Bookmark   April 3, 2007 at 5:02PM
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welham

You should try the Fruits & Orchards forum http://forums2.gardenweb.com/forums/fruit/. That's where I asked all my questions before purchasing 4 fruit trees last fall. If you need english descriptions for fruit trees for the Montreal area try Pepiniere Pierrefonds (link below).

For the plum - I love Italian Plum - it is a prune type but tastes amazing fresh and is very good for preserves too.

Make sure you have pollinators for the trees you get or that they are self-fertile.

Lakshmi

Here is a link that might be useful: Pepiniere Pierrefonds

    Bookmark   April 3, 2007 at 6:57PM
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quirkybec

Hi BP and Lakshmi, thanks for your replies.

Actually I'm a bit to the north of Montreal (St. Jerome), but would be up for a trip to the city to get the right trees. Thanks for the links, I checked out both of them, lots of info, thanks. Previously I was looking at Pepiniere Locas in Laval, if you happen to know it. As for French, if you live up here you have no choice but to be bilingual!

I believe that according to Agriculture Canada I'm right on the border of Zone 4b/a. I'm not nervous about the hardiness of the cherry (Carmine Jewel) but the plum and the apricot worry me a bit. That's why I wasn't considering an italian plum because I think they are only good to Zone 5. As for the apricot, it's the soil and early blooming that concerns me (especially with the kind of weather we had this week!).

I did post this question on the Fruit & Orchard forum, but so far have had no replies. I figured perhaps most people who subscribe to that forum are further south, hence my appeal to fellow Canadians!

Thanks again for your responses,

quirky.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2007 at 9:01AM
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bonniepunch(USDAz4 AgCanz5a)

I've never been to the place in Laval, or to Pépinière Pierrefonds, so I can't say how they compare to Jardin Jasmin. It looks like the Pierrefonds one is quite close to Jardin Jasmin though, so you could easily visit them both on the same trip. Man - I was right by Pépinière Pierrefonds last weekend and I didn't even know it was there! Oh well, next time I'm in that part of the city, I'll check it out too :-)

I was surprised to see that St Jerome was that different from Montreal zone-wise. One thing you'll need to consider with apricot trees flowering in late April, aside from possible frost damage, will there be any insects around to pollinate it? Jardin Jasmin has a 'Morden 604' apricot that they claim flowers in May - that might be safer. I don't know anyone that's ever tasted them though.

BP

    Bookmark   April 6, 2007 at 6:31PM
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welham

Hi Quirkybec,

I didn't buy my fruit trees from Pépinière Pierrefonds so I can't comment on the quality of their trees. I did drive by it today for the first time though and then saw bonniepunch's comment :-)I used their site as a reference but bought my trees from Cramer since they had most of the varieties I wanted near the end of the season. My Aunt raves about Jardin Jasmin too so I would check it out.

Lakshmi

    Bookmark   April 6, 2007 at 9:37PM
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cookie8(zone 5 ON)

A cute cherry tree with edible fruit is the Nanking cherry bush. My mom had them in Winnipeg and they got quite a bit of fruit. I will be planting one out east this year in my yard. I also remember seeing apricot bushes in Winnipeg, sorry don't know what kind but they were growing, I bet any Morden variety (as suggested) would be a great grower for a cooler climate.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2007 at 9:29PM
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canoekid(4/5QC)

Hi quirkybec,
Don't you have a Botanix in or around St. Jerome? just off the 117? I go every spring when I'm in town and fill up the car! Or maybe it's further north near Prevost? Yeah I think so, Ha! it's the Winners that's in St. Jerome!

My Dad is in Riviere du Loup, and has 2 or 3 Montmorency cherries, that have done just amazing! They're over 10 years old and produce well every year, he does share with the birds though! Good cooking cherry.

canoekid

    Bookmark   April 27, 2007 at 1:39PM
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chills71(Zone 6b Mi)

How commonly available are the U of Sask cherries (and/or Evans) in Canadian nurseries? (I'm 20 mins outside of Canada and would like to get an Evans or one of the new cherries).

~Chills

    Bookmark   April 27, 2007 at 10:34PM
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quirkybec

Hi everyone,

Just wanted to say thank you for all your advice. Decided to go for the U of Sask Carmine Jewel. I got it from Jardin Jasmin. I'll have to wait a few years to see how it produces but I am happy with my choice. I think I'll wait for the apricot and plum.

Canoekid, I have to say that the Botanix in Prevost is my "local" nusery and I must go there at least once every 2 weeks, but they don't have the best choice of fruit trees, I found Jardin Jasmin to have a much better selection.

Thanks again.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2007 at 10:35AM
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bonniepunch(USDAz4 AgCanz5a)

Glad you found something you wanted - hopefully it'll do well for you!

BP

    Bookmark   June 1, 2007 at 8:07PM
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