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Almond Trees (Possible in zone 5b ?)

 
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Hi everyone!
I am new to this website but i have a question and i was hoping someone would be able to help me! This summer i am going to be starting my food forest in my backyard and i really really wanted to plant almond trees and for them to be successful. I live in northern Indiana and i don't know if that is possible? Where i am at is considered zone 5b. I heard that almonds tend to like to bloom when it starts to get warm and with Indiana's weather, where it gets kinda warm and then freezes, i don't know if they will be successful or if yall know any tips or tricks i can do to help it be a success? Thank you in advance! Any advice is appreciated!
 
pollinator
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Howdy Shana, welcome to permies!  Could you tell us a little more about your property? Do you have any microclimates , or areas that might be out of any wind, have more sunlight etc?

I have a couple of peach trees in Denver that always bloom in the spring but then we usually get a spring snow storm. So we only get peaches every few years. It might be worth planting a couple and just seeing if they produce nuts every once in a while?
 
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We grow almonds in Zone 5b in northern Utah.

 
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Stark Bro's has a Hall's Hardy almond that is supposed to grow in zone 5.  You can read about it in the link.  I purchased a couple but they aren't planted yet.  It's a hybrid between Peach and Almond and is supposed to be hardier than other almonds.

Stark Bro's
 
steward
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Very cool Joseph!  Do you know if they're any specific varieties or are they seedlings?
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Greg Martin wrote:Very cool Joseph!  Do you know if they're any specific varieties or are they seedlings?



Seedlings.
 
Greg Martin
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You don't sell seeds of these by any chance???  (extra question marks representing hope)
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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Greg Martin wrote:You don't sell seeds of these by any chance???  (extra question marks representing hope)



Sorry. Not yet.
 
Greg Martin
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That's ok, it's exciting just to hear that they're surviving for you.  Thanks.
 
pollinator
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I've pined for almond tree for years and every year I google again, where they can grow and I don't want the $30 expense and heartbreak of experimenting - so many other things to plant every year!
Here's one video but if you google "where can you grow almond trees"   you'll find multiple sources saying that they don't like humidity or late frosts.  The arid regions of the middle east and California are cited as the best locations.     Joseph I don't know your climate but I suspect it's less humid than the southeast where I am ?   I haven't been able to get a peach off my tree in 4 years due to late frosts either.   This year I'm going to prune it very small and put a cover on it to see what happens.

https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=Where+Can+You+Grow+Almonds&&view=detail&mid=0A08506538263C00FD1D0A08506538263C00FD1D&&FORM=VDRVRV
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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The genetics keep getting more and more refined. We are able to grow peaches now even into zone 4b. Yay! Bit by bit, decade after decade, we grow trees from seeds, and gradually find combinations that extend the range of our favorite crops a little further north, and a little higher into the mountains. We find varieties that flower a little later in the spring, and avoid the early frosts more reliably.



 
Susan Pruitt
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So Joseph, am I understanding correctly that you've developed your own hybrids over decades?   I'm still skeptical that I can buy an almond tree from Stark Bros and have success in my humid climate.  Some day when I have nothing else to spend my money on I'm going to give it a go :)
 
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My research says Hall's is hardly worth the trouble,as it's reportedly  bitter,with thick hard shells.

Nikita‚Äôs Pride, Oracle, and Titan are varieties that claim  hardiness,late blooming,thin shells and sweet nuts.
I hope this is true, but I've found little in the way of a first person reports.

I'm in zone 6, with lots of humidity, and my  peach tree from the big box always dodges the late frosts.
No diseases either, despite  zero pruning on my part.
It's more like a 15' tall bush than a tree, but no fungal funk from poor air flow.

If I get almonds,I think I will shade the trunk as much as possible, with whitewash or such.
 
Greg Martin
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William, would be interesting to high graft the almonds onto your peach tree.  Folks do that with citrus onto Poncirus to provide greater hardiness and deeper dormancy.  If anyone has cuttings of the hardier varieties mentioned above I would be happy to try it on my peach and Hall's Hardy and report back to the group.  I planted one of the hardy varieties from OGW, but it died for me in zone 5....wished I had tried the grafting then.
 
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For what it's worth, I have a five year old Titan almond on Lovell rootstock in zone 7a, coastal/urban Boston.  It's 16' from a red haven peach, same age, that produces tons of fruit every year, and according to Raintree Nursery should be enough to pollinate it.  I don't water either tree - we get plenty of rain up here.  They flower at the same time, so I don't think late frosts are the problem.  The almond is vigorous and healthy, has loads of flowers every year, but sets very little fruit.  Last year I got exactly three almonds from it.  This year I can only see two (they are hard to see in the foliage because they stay green, instead of turning orange like a peach).  On the bright side, the almonds were a good size, and delicious.  Very much like a store-bough almond.  There is a bit of borer damage at the trunk, but no bugs in the nuts, they were perfect, with only occasional spraying (0-2x per year) based on Michael Phillip's advice.  I'd be interested in other first-hand accounts of almond-growing attempts up north.
 
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Hey Stacey we are basically neighbors. I have sweet kernel apricot with edible nut and fruit and also peaches but no almond. I haven't been able to find a 10ft dwarf cultivar.
 
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I'm zone 4 and have gotten lots of peaches off an Intrepid variety, as well as Blushing Star.
 
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I am in your zone but in Wyoming. I bought almond trees from One Green World. I'm not positive if they are possible because I'm not sure what killed mine. Well one of them was eaten by a puppy. So that is obvious. The remaining one survived for a few winters and then died. I have no idea why that one died. So, maybe. Can't hurt to try!
 
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I have seen an almond tree in Fort Wayne, IN. This was in a suburban permie garden. I do not have any tips, but wanted to say people in your area are having success. The almonds were huge the year i saw them
 
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Not sure if this is helpful but I am in TX trying to grow Almonds zone 8a. You mentioned Indiana gets warm and followed by a freeze. This happens in TX a lot. If your almond flowers start peaking out, with the initial pink tip, any sustained (by this I mean just hours) of below 30 degree weather and it will kill the flowers. So buy a late blooming almond right? I have All-in One, Alenia and Non-Pareil. The Alenia (also called Prima) supposedly blooms very late but in real life it blooms about a week later than the other two. Since the other two bloom mid-February we are talking late Feb with Alenia. Honestly that does not make much difference with late frosts we have here in TX. So I figured once every couple years we wouldn't have a late frost and I would get almonds and be happy with that. Well no late frost this year and my self fertile All-in Ones should be loaded with developing nuts but they are not.  I am suspicious that they are basically not self fertile despite the advertising. Non pareil did not flower, Alenia only had a few flowers as it is not mature like the All-in-ones (I am also suspicious because Almond farmers in CA want a self fertile variety to ease restraints on bee pollination, well why didn't they plant a bunch of All-in one's?). So if you get a "self-fertile" All-in one, it may not be, which can be another reason for not getting nuts. Next year my Alenia's should be in full bloom and I can report back on the pollination issue with All-in-one's. This was going to be the year, a few mature self fertile trees, weather cooperated nicely, all looked good and just about nothing.
 
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I live in zone 4b, southern MN and planted a couple of sweet almond trees and a couple of pecan trees back in '03 or so.  I never had as much as a suggestion that either tree would produce a nut and just let them grow for shade, which they did.  Now 17-18 years later, I have quite a few almonds and figure that it is long past time for me to prune.  Any advice?
 
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Hi,

I'm in zone 5b, and just purchased a Javid Iranian Almond tree, which is supposed to be super hardy to cooler temperatures.  I will receive the tree in April, and I'm trying to decide where to plant it.  

Initially, I was planning on planting it along the side of my house in a fan-espalier style.  The tree would receive full sun all year round and added warmth from my home.  However, I'm not sure if this would be great for those warm springs and late frost scenarios.  

Another location I am considering is on the front of my property which faces North.  The tree would receive full sun coming from the East and West, and I've read that facing north might aid in delaying the bloom time.  I'm thinking of planting an apricot tree on this same site.  

I would welcome any thoughts or suggestions you might have in getting peaches and almonds in your zone 4b location.


 
Greg Martin
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Paoletta De Filippis wrote:Hi,
I'm in zone 5b, and just purchased a Javid Iranian Almond tree


May I ask where you ordered it Paoletta?  I'm desperately trying to track one down...or better yet, trying to find someone who will sell me a bunch of seeds from that tree!
 
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Hello Paoletto and welcome to Permies.
It sounds like you already know as much as I do on growing almonds. If you get warm summers then I think you'd be better planting away from the eastern side. As you say the frost on blossom is most likely to damage the fruit crop, and my understanding it is the sun after frost that is the worst. There are various ways of protecting the flowers by temporary measures when frosts are likely - covering, putting warmers next to the trees, spraying with cold water after frost...
Is Javid Iranian Almond a self fertile variety? That seems to be another reason that they don't fruit - many require a pollinating partner. One of my childhood friends had an almond tree in the UK, where the weather definitely is not kind in the spring, going from frosts to warmth for several months. I'm not sure whether they ever got almonds from it, but it bloomed beautifully, so plant it where at least you can appreciate the flowers!
 
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