What is your favorite, most productive, most pest free, morello style tart cherry? I am in Portland Oregon 8b. I have room for one maybe two small cherry trees. I would like one or both to be morello style. I just like the dark color. I am curious about your experiences with traditional english morello, amarena di pescara, carmine jewel or others like montmorency even.
Are tart cherries crisp and crunchy like being or Rainier styles? Do they freeze well? I like fresh eating my crispy rainier but these tart cherries would mostly be used for smoothies, ice cream, pies, juice, fruit leather and jam.
Tart cherries are not crisp at all, they are quite soft and juicy. They are tasty and refreshing but still very tart. Carmine Jewel does have a very nice dark color, almost purple. Montmorency has clear flesh but there is so much color in the skin that anything you use it for will turn a nice bright red color. I haven’t tried English Morello. I think you can reasonably keep Carmine Jewel under 6 ft even when mature, though it could get larger if never pruned. They are both excellent for all the uses you have mentioned. Montmorency probably is the best tasting.
I would not get Carmine Jewel. The berries are small. Juliet is a much better choice. But you being in 8b I cannot suggest it. It’s too warm for the Canadian bush cherries. Or may be? The jury is still out.
I have grown North Star (dwf morello type cherry from U of MN). Great yield! Very dark skin and flesh color. I have also grown Balaton which has a dark flesh too (fruit is purple, sweetest of all pie cherries I have grown but low yielding. My daughter’s favorite pie cherry for fresh eating). Sweet Cherry Pie is a morello type that was selected by an old friend of mine (Bill Eubank-now deceased) that is super high yielding.
I also have grown amarelle types too (Surecrop from Stark Nursery & Mesabi ). Both are yellow fleshed and much milder in flavor.
My family prefers amarelle types. Personally I like both amarelle and Morello types and never ate a tart cherry variety I did not like.
Being in Wisconsin where so many Montmorency cherries are grown in Door County, I never bothered to grow this variety. We pick them at some of the U-pick sites when we are there if during the harvest season. If not, they sell them pitted and frozen all year long so I found no need to plant a Montmorency.
I have always wanted to try growing English morello! Something still on my bucket list as space an time permit. When a tree dies in my orchard, I try to be positive about it as I now have space to try something else that I have not yet grown.