Chill out

Fruits and nuts have another peculiar requirement. Most need a certain number of hours below 45 degrees Fahrenheit — their chill requirement or chill factor — to produce lots of flowers and fruit. As you may guess, fruits (such as oranges) that grow mostly in warm climates have lower chilling requirements than some cold-climate fruits (like apples). The chill factor is not related to cold-hardiness, however. Even some frost-tender plants, such as fig trees, need some time below 45 degrees Fahrenheit to bear fruit properly. Table 16-1 lists the chill categories.

Look for specific varieties that match your climate. Some peach varieties need only 200 hours; others require more than 1,000.

Table 16-1

Chill Requirements

Chill Factor

Number of Hours below 45°F



Fewer than 400

Areas of California, southern Texas, and Florida


Between 400 and 700

Gulf Coast, southeastern seaboard, and West Coast areas


More than 700 to 1,000

Most of the United States and Canada

Low winter temperatures and the timing of autumn and spring frosts play important roles in your selection of fruit species and varieties for your organic orchard. Local nurseries generally sell plants that are best suited to your local climate. Reputable mail-order nurseries and your local extension office can also steer you toward appropriate varieties.

How To Can Tangy Tomatoes

How To Can Tangy Tomatoes

Interested In Canning Juicy Tomatoes? Here's How You Can Prepare Canned Tomatoes At Home. A Comprehensive Guide On Tomato Canning. The process of canning tomatoes at home has been a family tradition with many generations. Making home canned or home tinned tomatoes is something that is remembered by families for years! You must have surely seen your granny canning tomatoes at home in order to prepare for the approaching winters. In winters, one is usually unsure of getting fresh tomatoes.

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