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Prunus hybrids in TX (Pluot, Plumcot, Aprium, etc.)  RSS feed

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Hi All,

People typically reference & regard the TAMU knowledge-base as a reputable source however, when referencing their fruit and nut fact sheets for plums & stone fruits, I've found a section pertaining to hybrids which is quite troubling to me.. frankly it seems like a lazy generalization. The section to which i'm referring is seen below:

"Prunus Hybrids: Many Prunus hybrids are available, namely plum by apricot and vice versa; commonly known as “plumcots,” “pluots,” or “apriums,” depending on the breeding program that released them (Fig. 12). In Texas they have been disappointing. So far none are winter hardy, all suffer from bacterial canker infestation, and few have produced adequately..."

The hybrids such as pluots have been distributed commercially for several years now, probably at least a decade. Has anyone grown plum hybrids (pluot, plumcot, aprium) in Texas with success? And if so, has anyone performed this in the DFW metroplex?

Womack nursery sells some of these hybrid varieties and people typically trust these folks to sell varieties which do well in TX - so who is telling the truth, Womack or TAMU? When I read the TAMU content, it always feels like it's influenced by old-timers who are stuck in the 20th century whereby only decades old fruit varieties are recommended..

Thanks in advance!
 
pollinator
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Location: Longbranch, WA
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Not an exact match but in my zone 7b hardiness climate the problem is peach leaf curl.  I had 3 plants come up in my wicking barrels from the seeds in the compost. One of the three turned out to be  nectarine.  I covered them with a high tunnel made from the frame of a portable garage to prevent the spread of the peach leaf curl which occurs during wet misty weather. The nectarine produces so heavy it breaks the branches.  This time of year the high tunnel also serves as storage for my wicking barrels.
My recommendation is to buy the fruit you like and bury the seeds with your kitchen scraps where you want the trees.  In a few years at least a few of them willbe producing the fruit you want and the others wil be rootstock to graft the best onto.
broken-necerine-branches.JPG
[Thumbnail for broken-necerine-branches.JPG]
seadling nectarine in high tunnel.
 
gardener
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Location: USDA Zone 8a
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Dave Bojangles wrote: people typically trust these folks to sell varieties which do well in TX - so who is telling the truth, Womack or TAMU?



I can't say that I have tried these varieties or purchased from Womack's.

We have purchased a lot of fruit tree failures.  It is my opinion that it is buyer beware. Even when I have done lots of research into fruit tree varieties, how to grow them, etc..Our last failure was a methly plum.

I would trust Tx A & M before I would trust a commercial vendor.
 
gardener
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I would like to second what Anne has said. I must note it is unfortunate, but I agree that some nurseries are in the business of making money and will sell anything, including varieties not for the region the nursery is in. I really hate to say this but that has been my experience and it is buyer beware. My suggestion is do the homework and figure out what varieties will grow in your region, and if you can try to locate orchards in the area and find out what they're growing, which will likely be commercial varieties for the marketplace, but you never know.

I also would trust the information from University AG extensions over a retailer.
 
Posts: 1651
Location: Massachusetts, Zone:6/7, AHS:4, Rainfall:48in even distribution
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As long as apricot and plum will grow in your region, their offspring/hybrid will be fine too.

While I am not in your region, the fruits like your weather alot more than mines.
Overall they tend to not need alot of winter chill hours, don't like late frost, tend to prefer a less humid air and dont mind the summer heat.

 
Dave Bojangles
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Anne Miller wrote:...We have purchased a lot of fruit tree failures.  It is my opinion that it is buyer beware. Even when I have done lots of research into fruit tree varieties, how to grow them, etc..Our last failure was a methly plum...



This is good information, thanks Anne.  I noticed you're in Zone 8a, are you in texas?

Anne Miller wrote:... I would trust Tx A & M before I would trust a commercial vendor.


James Freyr wrote:...I also would trust the information from University AG extensions over a retailer.



I know the comment was made who should i trust however, this was only stated rhetorically, and is not the the primary question of the thread.  However, for what it's worth i would also note that there are experienced gardeners in the area such as Neil Sperry who have suggested that Womack carry trusted varieties.

The primary question i'm asking is the following:
"Has anyone grown plum hybrids (pluot, plumcot, aprium) in Texas with success?"

When the university source makes broad and sweeping generalizations, I question the amount of research being conducted in this regard.  This is why i'm reaching out to a community such as this one to understand the reality and what people are truly experiencing.  I want to know if their claim that these varieties cannot be grown in Texas with success is true
 
Anne Miller
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Dave, we grew up in the DFW area.  Lived quite a few years in Central Texas. Now, we live in the Hill Country.  The Hill Country has it's own set of fruit tree problems that we didn't have in DFW.

If I had the option, which I don't, and really wanted fruit trees then I would find a nursery that guaranteed their trees and have them plant them.

I looked at Womack's website and saw no guarantees or claims, other than they have been around a long time.  I would expect that they have quality trees. Their "Aprium, Pluot and Pluerry" sure look tasty.

Mr. Bojangles, Love that song!
 
Dave Bojangles
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Thanks for posting your experience Anne. 

I plan to choose 3 varieties of trees for a multi planting strategy.. I'm thinking that maybe I'll balance my selection amongst tested varieties such as methley or Santa Rosa and the less tested varieties such as the pluots. 

I'll have to document the success or failure of the pluots as I'm not finding very much content in this regard as it relates to DFW.  I suppose typically gardeners might garden to get away from things like the internet, so I'm sure more folks have tried these, I'm just struggling to find their testimonials online.
 
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Location: near Houston, TX; zone 8b
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We live in the gulf coast area (just North of Houston). We have not tried Prunus hybrids. However, we have tried a Plum tree. When it has a few fruits on it, they are delicious. But, it gets confused because the tree requires a low number of chill hours. Even the peaches will bud and blossom too early.

We also have a nice apricot tree, some blossoms, but NO fruit.

The chill hours are the problem. You have to have low chill hour trees for a warm winter, but if the winter is cold, you get nada.

We have had great success with citrus, peaches, and pears. If you live near the gulf coast, you should have Bob Randall's book.
 
pollinator
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Last year i drove to womack to pick up my trees. This was my first and only experience with them. When i walked in i heard him on the phone. I caught the end of the conversations that went something like "it won't grow in florence, too much limestone"

After hearing that i told him i needed 4 pecan, 6 peach, 4 persimmon, 4 fig, 2 pear,  this is where i live, id like you to pick the specific type.

I had the best non failure rate in the few years ive been planting. One persimmons died but came up from the roots. So i lost 0 out of a couple dozen trees.

As far as the hybrid, i planted one in central texas.  It is still alive after 4 years. It was large when i bought it. Like 6ft tall. It was confused, blooming in fall instead of spring.  Then after that 12" rain in 2 days (2 years sgo?)it got a fungus. Leaves turned brown and fell off. I did nothing to heal it. It survived but no fruit yet.
 
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