I have room for exactly one more tree in my yard, and conveniently I have a credit for one more tree from OGW (they had sent me a mislabled peach tree last year, and so gave me a credit for a replacement tree). I’d like to add a late-season tree, since I have early and mid season trees pretty much covered, and since my kids don’t really like the late-season fruits I currently have in my yard (paw paws and issai kiwis).
If you had to choose one and only one late season tree from OGW to add to your yard, what would it be? I live in zone 7A, just outside of Philadelphia, so input from any nearby members would be greatly appreciated!
Here are my thoughts so far:
Emerald Beaut plum:
- Pros: I’ve read great things about how it tastes, and how long it hangs. I also like the idea of it being a green plum, just because I’ve only tasted red plums before. I have a J plum and an aprium in my yard, so pollination should be covered (i think?).
- Cons: I’m not sure of any maintenance/disease issues for an Emerald Beaut. I have relatively few fruit trees in my yard, and so far disease pressure has been low, and maintenance has been low. If I add another stone fruit, would that make my yard more of a target for insects/diseases?
- Other Considerations: I already have a hollywood plum, and a summer delight aprium in my yard, so theoretically I could just graft a scion of Emerald Beaut to one of those, and not get a whole tree of it (although I have never grafted before so this makes me nervous).
Some Kind of Persimmon:
- Pros: A long and late season. People who love persimmons really love them. My mom loves them. Relatively easy to maintain. There are a few persimmon trees in my neighborhood, and those trees look beautiful and thriving (although I do not know their owners so I cannot ask questions about varities/maintenance/etc).
- Cons: I do not know how much I like persimmons, or how much my kids would like them. I’ve had non-astringent persimmons from the grocery before, when they were hard, and I thought they were just meh. Mildly sweet and somewhat insipid. But, from what I’ve read, home-grown and tree ripe persimmons are a whole different ballgame. I just don’t know that I want to devote the last spot in my yard to something I’ve thought was just meh the few times I’ve tasted them.
- Other Considerations: I also don’t know anything about varieties, and which variety I would choose. My impulse is to go non-astringent, because I don’t think my kids would have the patience to wait for a fruit to get super soft before eating, and also because I have a feeling I wouldn’t like the texture of a fully ripe astringent (although I have never had one, so that’s just an educated guess). Based on the OGW descriptions, I was considering either Cardinal or Sweet Fuyu. What are your thoughts?
Some kind of Jujube:
- Pros: I’ve read great things about them. I have seen exactly one tree in my neighborhood, and it looks healthy and thriving and covered with fruit. Unfortunately, I do not know the owner, so cannot ask for a sample or any other questions. I have read that they are fairly maintenance free.
- Cons: I really know nothing else about them. I’ve never tasted one. I don’t know if I would like them. The variety I was considering (Honey Jar) is very expensive! More than my store credit, and much more than the other trees I was considering.
- Other Considerations: I have no idea what variety to pick. My inclination is Honey Jar, based on what I’ve read. But since I’ve never tasted one, that’s just a guess. Honey Jar is expensive, but OGW has other varieties that cost less. I just do not know whether it is worth it to get one of the less expensive varieties, or whether Honey Jar is really worth the extra money.
Any other late-season stone fruit: I already have a peach (saturn donut), a plum (hollywood), and an aprium (summer delight) in my yard, so I was not super interested in another stone fruit tree (except the emerald beaut because it seems different enough from the plum that I have that I thought it might be worth it). Are there any other late-season stone fruits that would really wow me that you think are a must for my one last tree? Or should I just learn to graft and graft a late-season stone fruit on to one of my existing trees?
Apples: From what I have read, I do not think I am interested in apples. I do not want to worry about cross-pollination. And I think there might be too much disease pressure for apples here. I used to have a saskatoon in my yard, but it got really bad CAR and died (or the saskatoon equivalent). There are tons of cedars/junipers/cypress/etc in my surrounding neighborhood, and I just don’t think I’d have it in me to keep up with the maintenance.
Am I missing anything? If it were you, what would you choose and why?