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shane jennings
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Do you have an Heirloom Pomegranate tree at your home or know someone that does? Sometimes they are not the prettiest pomegranate, but heirlooms have unique taste. If you have an heirloom pomegranate, can you share a photo and a brief story about your tree?
 
shane jennings
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Here's a heirloom I found in Greenville Alabama. I call it Florabama Gold because of its color and years ago it came as a seedling from Florida. It's very, very sweet.
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Dan Boone
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Pomegranates seem to be rare here in Oklahoma, although I hear sporadic reports of thriving trees in one or another distant county. However, this morning my sharp-eyed sister (who also has better color vision than me) alerted me to a thriving pomegranate tree in the nearest town to where I live. She described the location and I was skeptical, because I've driven by it 1000 times and never seen it. But following her instructions, I drove by again and sure enough! A thriving 14-foot many-stemmed tree with about 50 small pomegranates on it. Many were split open and fallen (we just got a huge rain and wind storm that followed a long dry period) so when I walked past on foot I was able to pick up a broken fruit right off the sidewalk.

I've got two-year-old seedlings from random California supermarket pomegranates, but I'm not at all assured they'll thrive here. I can't tell you how happy I am to have local seeds from a variety proven under local conditions. Of course, I'll never know what variety it is...

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shane jennings
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Dan,

I am so glad you posted a picture. I think it is beautiful. I use to live in Texarkana Texas & Oklahoma was part of my territory. I can definitely understand Oklahoma's extreme weather patterns with a lot of time spent there. That is awesome that you have a pomegranate variety that survives in Oklahoma. By the way, you don't have to save seeds to plant. Dormant pomegranate cuttings root fairly easy.

What did it taste like? Was it sweet, sweet/sour, or sour? I have been looking for an heirloom dark red pomegranate. I have been told of three homestead dark red pomegranate heirloom varieties, but when I went to them, they were not there anymore. That makes saving heirloom varieties very important. If you can, see if you can find out more about the tree from the owner? Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful fruit!
 
Dan Boone
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Location: Central Oklahoma (zone 7a)
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Hey, Shane, that's good to know about the cuttings. Of course it's a bit harsh to prune somebody's tree without permission even from the sidewalk, so for that I would indeed have to make the acquaintance of the home owner. Likewise to ask her the variety. I'm not very good at cold-introducing myself to strangers (I have just a touch of social anxiety around that sort of thing) so it seems unlikely. But it's a small town so I may be able to ask around, figure out who lives there, and figure out who we know in common. Time will tell.

I might also walk by after the next ice storm and see if there's any "debris" on the sidewalk that I can clean up like a good citizen. I'm so terrible...

The fruit itself I would describe as sweet/sour -- there seems to be a lot of sugar in the arils, but also a lot of acid. They are quite delicious, albeit somewhat smaller than supermarket fruit from California.

Obviously growing from seeds there's no telling what I'll get. I've got room and intent to plant quite a few trees, though, depending on how many seedlings I can get germinated.
 
shane jennings
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Dan,

I wish you the best in finding out more about this great pomegranate variety. Indeed very great find since it survives & grows in Oklahoma. The above yellow pomegranate I call Florabama Gold was grown from a seed. I ask Mrs. Armstrong if her fruit taste like her brothers fruit. She told me it did. Sometimes you get lucky and get one just like the parent tree. I doubt very seriously that the pomegranate variety from California called "Wonderful" would survive Oklahoma. Heirloom varieties are unique fruits that are special fruits. I wish you the best.
 
shane jennings
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Here's another great heirloom pomegranate. This one I found in Loxley Alabama. The pomegranate tree is over 100 years old. It's red on the outside. The arils are not pretty, but it has a good taste. It is sweet/sour type, but has a good balance. Here's some pictures.
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shane jennings
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Here is a heirloom pomegranate I found in Florala Alabama. This one bears a lot of fruit and keeps blooming & setting fruit on until it frost. It's a sweet/sour type, but a bit on the tart side. It's red over green with pink arils.
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shane jennings
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Here is heirloom pomegranate tree I found grow in Greenville Alabama. The lady said this has never produced fruit. Although no fruit, it has beautiful carnations
Type orange flowers.
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shane jennings
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Here's an heirloom pomegranate I found in Jay, Florida. It's red on the inside & out. It's a sweet/tart. Nothing has ever been done to the tree, and it still produces an average of 70 pomegranate fruits a year. The owner wants me to come back Wednesday and he is going to give me cuttings from his & 2 neighbors. One is blood red & sweet & double the size of his & so red on the inside it stains you hands.
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Ken W Wilson
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Location: Nevada, Mo 64772
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Dan, I have more than a touch of social anxiety disorder myself, so I can relate. I hope you find a way to make contact though. If you do and get cuttings or more seeds, I'd sure like to try some. I think your temperatures are similar to mine. Your weather may be dryer. I've found that most gardeners like to discuss their plants.
 
joseph fournier
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Hello Folks!!
     Well I live in the Deserts of Utah, my lovely home. I am wanting to create a drought tolerant/cold tolerant food forest. I love permaculture plants are amazing. haha anyways I am looking to obtain  cold tolerant Pomegranate seeds from someone who maybe growing pomegrantes in a similar climate as mine or just has some great plant they would being happy to give to another Permy. Obvioulsly my thinking is they will be my best choice for survival. I have been searching online for simply seeds but I'm finding people wanting to sell 1 gallon potted trees for $30+dollars which doesn't include shipping. Would anybody be willing to trade or sell me some of their seeds please?!?!?
           Joseph F.
 
shane jennings
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Hello Joseph,

     I am collecting heirloom pomegranate varieties all over the place. Most of the time I do not plant seed, but instead root a cutting. I have collected quite a bit in Alabama. Last week, I just picked up cuttings from two old heirloom varieties in Birmingham, Alabama. Now I do have some that I am growing by seed. A customer of mine brought me a pomegranate from his home country of Tajikistan. I have 32 of them. What type of pomegranate are you looking for? There is a variety raised in Utah called Utah Sweet and also called Dixie Sweet. Also, I have an educational page for growing pomegranates. If interested, check it out. Here's the link.
https://m.facebook.com/alabamapomegranateassociation/
 
Ken W Wilson
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Location: Nevada, Mo 64772
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How did the pomegranites do for you all this year?

Dan, did the Oklahoma seeds give you any plants? I think you're the only one here who is close to being as far north as I am. I'm 90 miles south of Kansas City. I'm determined to plant one or two this spring. I haven't picked a variety yet.
 
Dan Boone
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Ken W Wilson wrote:Dan, did the Oklahoma seeds give you any plants? I think you're the only one here who is close to being as far north as I am. I'm 90 miles south of Kansas City. I'm determined to plant one or two this spring. I haven't picked a variety yet.


Hey, Ken.  I mismanaged my seedlings this spring, and only planted half a dozen little pots, 2 seeds per pot.  I got decent germination but Oklahoma summer is not kind to tiny tree seedlings unless they are very well managed.  I came through the summer with only one living seedling, which was just about three inches tall when I put it in my makeshift cold frame (a retired chest freezer with the bottom full of water containers) at first frost.  I'll try again next spring, as I still have plenty of seed.  I also got another small fruit from the roadside near the local tree this fall, and saved those seeds as well. 

On the brighter side, I got the best one of my California-supermarket-fruit seedlings (just going into their third winter) into the ground in a good location this fall.  I have two that survived two winters in protected out-of-doors pots, and I'm hedging my bets by planting one in the ground and keeping one in the cold frame this winter. 
 
shane jennings
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Here's another heirloom I found in Birmingham Alabama. 85+ year old tree believed to have come over with Sicilian immigrants. Dark Red pomegranate with dark red arils with a sweet/sour taste
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Jane Reed
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Shane, I am enjoying your posts very much.  Two years ago I moved to my little property in the country and am starting to plant a hedge around my back garden against the day when my cheap poultry wire fence fails.  The fence is necessary because of deer predation, and so, the hedge plants need to be  unpalatable to deer.  In my neck of the woods, pomegranates seem to be one of those.

My climate is not so harsh as Dan's.  I'm in northern California, about 50 miles east of Sacramento, in the foothills of the Sierras, in USDA zone 9a. 

There is a fellow who lives in an area to the north of me and closer to the coast who has been breeding feijoa for 30 years and also pomegranates, I believe.  I hope to see him this month at a scion exchange where I want to get two or three feijoa, which deer completely ignore.  I will see if he has brought any pomegranates as well.  Fortunately, I understand he brings rooted cuttings, as grafting is not a skill I yet possess.
 
shane jennings
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Hello jane,

     It is so nice of you to write me. It sounds like you live in a beautiful area.. I definitely agree that deer do not like pomegranates. They have completely leave them alone here too. I always wanted to try Feijoa, but have not tried them yet. It will be exciting to see what the guy grows. Pomegranates do not need to be grafted. It is best to root them. Of course, most all the heirloom pomegranate varieties I find were grown as seedlings passed from homestead to homestead. I can not wait to what you find out.
 
Jane Reed
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I thought that might be true, that both feijoa and
pomegranate are increased from cuttings rather than grafting.  This scion exchange is put on by the California Rare Fruit Growers. The fellow I referred to is a member of this group/club and goes to their events to share his varieties.  I'm under the impression he just gives them away, but I'l be happy in any case. 

I saw a video interview with him, recorded a few months ago, on the subject of feijoa.  He made an offhanded comment about his "other property" where he had his pomegranates.  I'll find out on Jan. 28 and report back.
 
shane jennings
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Here's an heirloom pomegranate I found in Gaskin Florida. It has a yelloish color that gets a red blush when it ripens. It has very sweet pink arils.
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shane jennings
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Most of the heirloom varieties I have showed so far are very different that what he see in the store. Here's a beautiful colored pomegranate. Unique here because even the variety wonderful grown here has white arils because our nightly temperatures are not low enough to produce good color. This heirloom has dark red fruit  with dark red arils that stain your hands red that has a sweet/sour taste. Very big heavy producer. I found this in Allentown Florida.
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Tracy West
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Do you sell cuttings or seeds? We had pomegranate in AZ before we moved to NC and its my husband's favorite fruit. I really didn't think it was possible to grow in the SE!
 
shane jennings
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Tracy West wrote:Do you sell cuttings or seeds? We had pomegranate in AZ before we moved to NC and its my husband's favorite fruit. I really didn't think it was possible to grow in the SE!


Hello Tracy,

     I'm sorry for the long delay. If interested, I can get you a tree.
 
shane jennings
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Found a heirloom with a lot of history. This heirloom came from Alexander Stephens homeplace. He planted it soon after becoming Vice President of the Confederacy!  This Ancient shrub is still there. This variety is a  pink/orange color and has a sweet/sour taste.
 
Gail Gardner
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Dan Boone wrote:Pomegranates seem to be rare here in Oklahoma, although I hear sporadic reports of thriving trees in one or another distant county.  However, this morning my sharp-eyed sister (who also has better color vision than me) alerted me to a thriving pomegranate tree in the nearest town to where I live.  She described the location and I was skeptical, because I've driven by it 1000 times and never seen it.  But following her instructions, I drove by again and sure enough!  A thriving 14-foot many-stemmed tree with about 50 small pomegranates on it.  Many were split open and fallen (we just got a huge rain and wind storm that followed a long dry period) so when I walked past on foot I was able to pick up a broken fruit right off the sidewalk.

I've got two-year-old seedlings from random California supermarket pomegranates, but I'm not at all assured they'll thrive here.  I can't tell you how happy I am to have local seeds from a variety proven under local conditions.  Of course, I'll never know what variety it is...



I thought it got too cold for Pomegranates to grow here. If yours grows, I'd love to get some seeds to plant.
 
Zee Swartz
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Mmmmmm...POMEGRANATES!  My family and I just love them and would be over the moon excited to grow some.  We are in Central Oklahoma (howdie, Okies!) and I'll be keeping an eye on this thread...
Something to consider: David Goodman (David the Good at Survival Gardener-love that chap) talks about planting trees that thrive in zones one to two numbers higher than your own against a south facing mass wall.  He's had success growing key limes, meyer lemons and, I believe, pineapple by growing them against the south facing wall of his house.  We intend to build a freestanding mass wall and give it a try with pomegranates when and if we can find some to plant!
Yay for pomegranates! ;o)

Zee
 
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