Cherry cherry cherry…


So you folks in cold climates are slightly amused by my irrational exuberance regarding a few cherries on a tree.  OK, not just a FEW, but about 50 in all.  For this tiny tree in our hot climate, it is a remarkable milestone and a testament to Fred Zaiger of Zaiger Genetics in Modesto, prolific breeder of stone fruit, much of it low-chill.  The range of fruit we’re able to grow here now is incredible; my neighbor still has some bananas on the tree across the street, avocado and citrus are on the other side of the fence, and 100 varieties of apples are growing around the yard.  Blueberries form a hedge against the wall, and the most luscious peaches and nectarines are in blossom right now.  The only thing we’re lacking is cranberries, which if you’ve ever tasted a fresh one, makes me wonder how the Indians ever figured out that they weren’t poisonous as its like sucking on an aspirin tablet.  I can live with canned cranberries…

4 Responses

  1. I planted a Royal pair in Jan 2010 in the San Fernando Valley (Van Nuys). The Minnie Royal bloomed for the first time this year in late January, maybe 50 or so flowers, but most buds were leaf buds. It’s in full leaf now. The Royal Lee cherry bloomed later has 100+ blooms on it, but not much overlap. I’ll probably get a handful of cherries this year from hand-pollination and bees. Two Minnies are almost ripe now! They are both on Colt rootstock (3″ trunks) and pruned to a 10′ modified central leader. I think next year they will go bonkers. AmazIng they even flowered with the incredibly warm winter we had. This is also the 3rd leaf for my Dorsett Golden Apple – what a maniac!

  2. The more cold you get, the more overlap. I grow in 3 zones 300, 400 and 500 is the best overlap. In Minnie Royal and Royal Lee

  3. Chill hours that is 🙂 below 7 degrees c.

  4. Picked my first Minnie Lee cherries today

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