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Heirloom Pomegranate

 
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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Location: Central Oklahoma (zone 7a) ~39" rain/year
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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) ~39" rain/year
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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.
 
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