Encyclopedia of Fruits Berries Nuts

Berys Nuts

Flavor and color descriptions are included for hundreds of fruit, berry, and nut varieties. Hardiness, time of fruiting, and special care requirements are discussed. he information in this encyclopedia is designed to help you choose the best possible fruits for your garden. It describes the best and most popular fruits. Some varieties are known by more than one name. In these cases the most common name is used with the less well known alternatives following...

Apples

Espalier Mcintosh Apple Tree With Apples

Well over a thousand apple varieties are available today. Many of these are sports, or accidental mutations of another variety. Others, especially the more recent introductions, are the result of painstaking crossing and selection by apple breeders. Each parent plant supplies half the heritage of seedlings, but that half may be a set of characteristics either partly or completely hidden in the parent. The seedlings are an unknown mixture until breeders grow them to fruiting size to see what...

Filberts Hazelnuts

Nuts And Berries Photo

Filberts and hazelnuts are one and the same. Species hail from Europe, North America, and eastern and western Asia. One European species, Corylus avellana, is called European filbert, and both North American species, C. americana and C. cornuta, are often referred to as American hazelnuts. But there is no strict naming convention. The standard nut-produc-ing filberts are inclined to grow into large, suckering shrubs that form patches or thickets in time. They are usually trained into small...

Early Varieties

Hale Early Peach

'Fairhaven' This large peach is bright yellow with an attractive red cheek and light fuzz. The firm freestone flesh is yellow with red at the pit. The fruit freezes well. The tree has showy flowers. Good for the West. Origin Michigan. 'Flavorcrest' A large, firm, yellow freestone with good flavor, its skin is blushed red. Good for California. Origin California. 'Garnet Beauty' This variety is an early sport of 'Redhaven'. Medium to large semifreestone fruit hangs on the tree until overripe. The...

Blackberries

Comanche Nuts And Berries

Blackberries and raspberries are closely related and have similar growing requirements, but blackberries are larger and more vigorous, and some varieties are less hardy. Blackberries come in two fairly distinct forms erect and trailing and have a number of different names. The ordinary blackberry is a stiff-caned, fairly hardy plant that can stand by itself if properly pruned. The trailing kind, generally called dewberries, are tender and grown mainly in the South. Trailing plants from the...

Berries

Berries are tempting to grow because most offer rich rewards for a small investment of time and space. A little sunlight and a pot, for example, are all you need to grow a crop of luscious strawberries. The small-fruited plants can return bumper crops with minimal effort on your part, and several of the shrubby or vining plants can also add beauty to your landscape. In considering berries you must work out the space and number of plants needed for a reasonable supply of fruit. If the plants are...

Pears

Shenseiki Semi Dwarf Asian Pear

Pears, especially dwarf pears, are a fine choice for the home gardener. The trees are attractive even in winter they require little pruning after they begin to bear they begin to bear early and the fruit stores fairly well without any special requirements. The plants take well to formal or informal training so space is not a problem. Standard pears will spread 25 feet across and grow as tall or taller. A dwarf in natural shape needs a space about 15 feet square, but with the pruning and...

Chestnuts

Chinese Chestnut Trees Prun

Of all the nut trees, the chestnut must be the most romantic No poet has immortalized the spreading walnut tree, no lyricist captured the mood of filberts roasting by an open fire. But in the past 80 years the chestnut romance has been a tragic one, for the American chestnut Castanea dentata once an important forest and timber tree and the source of small but flavorful nuts has been brought to the edge of extinction in its native range by an exotic bark disease. It survives in its old territory...

Asian Pears Apple Pears

Apple Pear China

Asian pears are true pears, but are a different species than the common pear. The common name apple pear has probably been given them because their texture is crisp like an apple, and some of them are shaped like apples. But they are not crosses between apples and pears. They are a distinctly different fruit, with their own unique flavor. This group of pears is native to Japan and China. They were selected for size, shape, flavor, and lack of grittiness. The fruit is eaten firm like an apple,...

Apricots

Apricot Varieties

In the colder regions of the country, the selection of apricot varieties is limited because apricots bloom early and may suffer frost damage. In recent years, however, breeders have produced a number of hybrids with hardy Manchurian apricots, and now varieties such as 'Chinese' will fruit fairly regularly even in the northern plains. The choice of varieties widens in milder regions, and more tender varieties such as 'Moorpark' will bear even in the eastern states. Dwarfed apricots on special...

Quince

Currant Trellis

The quince is an underdog among fruits, perhaps because it must be cooked before it is edible. Since this processing is no more difficult than stewing tomatoes, quinces deserve to be more widely grown both for their distinctive fruit and their ornamental value. The plants are 15 to 20 feet tall and slow growing so they can be trained as trees or as multiple-stemmed shrubs. White or pale pink 2-inch blossoms appear at the tips of new growth in spring flowering is therefore late enough to escape...

Cherries

Emperor Francis Cherries

Cherries come in three distinct forms with many varieties in each category. The sweet cherry sold in markets is planted commercially in the coastal valleys of California and in the Northwest, espe cially Oregon. There are also extensive commercial plantings near the Great Lakes. All cherries require considerable winter chilling, which rules out planting in the mildest coastal and Gulf climates, but they are also damaged by early intense cold in fall and by heavy rainfall during ripening. Sweet...

Almonds

Post Harvest Almond Fungi

The almond's kinship to the peach is evident at all times of the year from bare tree to peachlike blossoms and leaves, and even to the, green, inedible fruit surrounding the edible kernel that is the almond. Almond trees produce best in California and Arizona where spring frosts and summer rain are rare. But the regions in which they bear well constitute only a fraction of their growing range. Almonds typically flower very early and they are highly vulnerable to frost. If the flowers escape...

Pecans

Texas Pecan Production

At heights of 70 feet or more, with a spread nearly as great, pecans are imposing shade trees. For best nut production, most pecan varieties need another tree nearby as a pollinator, so commitment to a pecan crop requires a considerable investment in space. One word describes the best pecan climate hot. A tree needs a long summer with hot days and nights in order to produce fully ripe nuts. Outside of native pecan territory in the southern and south central United States, the southwest desert...

Currants and Gooseberries

Imperial White Currant

Currants and gooseberries are among the most beautiful of the small fruits, but they are good home garden shrubs for other reasons as well. You won't often see fresh fruit in the market, since crops from the limited commercial plantings go to processors for commercial jellies and canned fruits. But since the plants are ornamental, easy to care for, and productive, northern gardeners can tuck a few among other shrubs for the bloom, fruit, and fall color. The crop can be used for jelly, pie, or...

Strawberries

Strawberry Quinault Everbearing

If you have grown strawberries for any length of time, you know that flavor and yield are not predictable but vary from year to year depending on spring growing conditions. Strawberries are also very regional in their adaptation and the best variety in one state may be only fair in another. A good nursery can be a big help, since the staff keeps abreast of developments in plant breeding and offers plants that should succeed. Your county agricultural agent can help, too, especially if you've had...

Peaches

The peach is one of the most popular of homegrown fruits. Both peaches and their close relatives, the nectarines, are at their best when tree ripened, so a home gardener's time and effort are rewarded by a product that money can't buy. Probably the biggest drawback is that peaches are susceptible to many pests and diseases and spraying is often necessary for a good harvest. If you choose not to spray your peach trees you will have to be prepared to lose some or all of your crop in a bad year....

Blueberries

Berries Coville

Blueberries demand the right climate and planting soil but take very little care if you provide suitable conditions. They are about as hardy as a peach but need a fair amount of win ter chill and will not grow well in mild winter climates. Blueberries belong to the heath family and count azaleas, rhododendrons, mountain laurel, and huckleberries among their cousins. If any of these grow naturally near your garden, or if you have prepared an artificial site that suits them, then blueberries will...

Nectarines

Nectarine Earliblaze Picture

The nectarine is simply a fuzzless peach. Peach trees sometimes produce nectarines as sports, and nectarine trees will produce fuzzy peach sports. The two plants are nearly identical, but nectarines are generally more susceptible to brown rot. Gardeners in the South may have trouble with the disease because hot humid weather encourages it. You will have to spray regularly to control it. Otherwise, nectarines require the same care as peaches. 'Earliblaze' This is a me-dium-sized, clingstone,...

Plum Varieties Taste Best

Methley Plum Tree Buds Thinning

Of all the stone fruits, plums are the most varied. They range from hardy little cherry plums and sand cherries to hybrids with the hardiness of natives, sweet European plums and the prunes made from them , and sweet or tart Japanese plums. European plums tend to be small, and most varieties are egg-shaped. The flesh is rather dry and very sweet. Prunes from these plums are the sweetest and easiest to dry. The plants are fairly- hardy, but some varieties do well in mild-winter areas. All...

Persimmons

Virginiana Meader

The persimmon belongs to the same family of plants as the ebony tree of southern Asia. The American persimmon, Diospyros virginiana, grows as a native from Connecticut to Kansas and southward, but it won't take the extreme cold of the northern plains or northern New England. It has small, edible fruit up to 2'A inches in diameter. The large persimmon found in the market is the Oriental persimmon, Diospyros kaki, and its many varieties. It could be far more popular than it is if more gardeners...

Crabapples

Hardy Fig Presidents Choice Pictures

Fine for jellies or pickled whole fruit, crabapples are also the most decorative of fruit trees. Flowers range from red to pink to white. The fruits are of many sizes, from tiny cherrylike varieties to large, yellow, pink-cheeked kinds. The varieties sold for their flowers also have edible fruit, but the iarge-fruited varieties are better if your aim is to grow the fruit for jelly. Crabapples range from small, 10-foot trees to spreading trees 25 feet tall. The large-fruited kinds are larger...

Genetic Dwarf Peaches and Nectarines

The genetic dwarf peaches and nectarines form dense bushes, with long leaves trailing in tiers from the branches. In spring the branches are entirely hidden by flowers that are usually semidouble and always very showy. In winter the bare plants are also visually interesting. The fruit is of normal size. Most require moderate winter chilling 400-600 hours below 45 F for good bloom. None are blossom hardy in really cold places, but they can be grown in containers and protected until the warm...

Grapes

Best Dark Table Grapes Northwest

In the earliest periods of human history, four foods were recognizably important. In the North there were apples and honey. In the South there were olives and grapes. commonly grown today the American and the European. The American grape entered our history more recently than the vine of Europe, but it. has already played an important role since its roots saved the European grape from extinction during the Phylloxera vilifoliae plague of the last century. This plague threatened to destroy the...

Walnuts

Garden Margin

Walnuts are both domestic and foreign. Most familiar in the marketplace and certainly-most important to the home gardener is the so-called English or Persian walnut Juglans regia , which hails from southeastern Europe and southwestern Asia. The nuts are large, flavorful, and enclosed in relatively thin shells. The black walnut J. nigra from the eastern United States is famous for its fine-tasting nut encased in a shell of rocklike hardness. Another eastern tree with a similar reputation is the...