Cistena Sandcherry and Pembina plum

lylakMay 25, 2008

Hello, I am not sure how to find the answers to my questions - I posted a couple messages earlier, but haven't heard back....where do I go to see the answers? I think I might be lost in the Garden Web!
Anwyay, a friend gave me a Pembina plum. I then purchased a Byrke Red plum, but somewhere read where a Western Sandcherry was best for pollination. I couldn't find a Western Sandcherry anywhere, but a local nursery sold me a Cistena Sandcherry - telling me it was the same thing as a Western isn't...but now I am left wondering if it will indeed pollinate the plums. I also have two cherry trees developed at U of named Romeo, and one named Juliette. Will I get any fruit from any of these, or have I yet to plant another tree to help with the pollination? To think it all started with a simple gift.

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Pudge 2b

Hi lylac, and welcome to the Far North forum. I know what you mean about being lost - I wandered around Facebook for a couple of weeks before I figured it out, LOL.

If you have a specific question, it's always best to start a new thread instead of asking your question in the middle of another thread started by someone else, because sometimes your question might get missed. Also, when you start a new thread, there is an option, a box to check, if you want responses sent to you via email.

At the bottom of the Far North page, or any main page on Garden Web, there is a search function. It's always good to do a search to see if there were any past discussions about whatever your question might be. In this case, you could search 'Plum' or Plum pollination'. Sometimes your question can be answered without even asking. When you search, there is an option to search only the Far North forum, or to search all forums in Garden Web. I use this feature a lot because try as I may, I just can't remember all the information that flows thru here.

Okay, so after all this I don't have a clue about plum pollination, but there was this past discussion (link below). I'm sure those who are more knowledgeable and experienced will chime in with more for you. In the meantime, here's a past discussion.

Here is a link that might be useful: previous discussion about plum

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 11:35PM
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Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

Welcome on board, Lylak!
Another thing we like to tell you, to put zone # , [hardiness zone you're in] on your member page, this sometimes helps to give you a more precise answer.

Byrke Red plum I have never herd of, doesn't come up in Google either, ..perhaps a new one?
I find, that it's good to plant many varieties to ensure good pollination.
Yes, Western Sandcherry should work, if they bloom in the same time.
I think Nanking cherries too,.. plant as many as you can.
I'm sure, some of the nurseries near you should carry both,
if not, you can order from Boughen, [below]
I bought a whole bunch of tiny plants, Nanking and Western Sandcherry root stock for plum.
I will be doing a little bit of testing to grow dwarf plums on these.

Here is a link that might be useful: Nanking & Western Sandcherry

    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 12:49AM
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It's probably a Brook Red Plum, one of the most popular vaieties. I don't know the answer about the Cistena Cherry. Hybrid cherries like Pembina and Brook Red will minimally pollinate each other. A native plum or a Western sandcherry are usually recommended.

U Sask Cherries, like all sour cherries, should be self pollinating.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 7:32PM
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I agree with granolabar, it's got to be Brook Red. Brook Red is supposed to be a pollinator for Pembina, but when I planted both varieties about 15 years ago, it turned out that the Brook Red was mislabelled, and whatever variety it was turned out to be a poor pollinator for Pembina. (I cut down the fake Brook Red.) Fruiting was minimal until I grafted on a branch or two of "Perfection" plum, which has plums that are very similar to Pembina. Once the graft started blooming I went from maybe 5 fruits per year to well over 200, last year must have been close to 500. So definitely use a pollinator, and Brook Red should do it if you got a real Brook Red. If you don't want to grow two trees, consider grafting a few branches to put two varieties on one tree.

Like granolabar says, sour cherries are self-fruitful, you only need one plant.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 5:34PM
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glen3a(Winnipeg MB 3A)

I have no idea how good of a pollinator Cistena Sandcherry makes, but I know, at least on my plant, it definitely doesn't produce a lot of blossoms.

The entire what pollinates with what in the cherry/plum/pitted fruit family confuses me. Is there any reason why nurseries don't just do a multiple variety grafted plum tree, with a few varieties on one tree that can cross-pollinate each other? I've always wanted a plum tree but probably don't have room for one, never mind two. I suppose the graft unions, if you graft multiple varieties onto one tree, freeze out in a cold winter?


    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 11:50PM
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I don't know about grafting plums, but my Dad has been grafting apple trees for years here in the chinook belt. He rarely loses a graft once it is a couple of years old. Dad's an apple rustler - if he sees an interesting looking apple tree, he snitches a couple of pieces and grafts them on once he gets home. In fall and spring the trees look really neat - two or three colors of blossoms or fruit on one tree.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2008 at 4:39PM
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