Jujubes- my new Adventure


Thanks Castenea. Glad to here that jujubes seem to tolerate a variety of mixes and poor soil.

I probably will go with the famous 5-1-1 and add nutrient later.



I did add some playing sands to my potting mix for drainage. Jujube seems to like sandy soil.



Do you use 5-1-1 or something else?

From what I have seen @jujubemulberry's or @Bhawkins's pictures of jujubes in some semi-desert areas, jujube is one tough tree.


Is shanxi li self fertile? Raintree states that it is but i want to confirm before ordering one.


I used 2/3 of Miracle Gro moisture control potting mix and 1/3 playing sands for the potted Jujube trees. Last February, I moved my 6 years old Li to a more sunnier spot but that area was low laying with too much water from the springler so I filled the whole entire rootball with street sands. The Li liked it a lot plus the all day sun also helped and it rewarded me with abundance crops this past Semester.



jujus are tough indeed! Btw, i am not partial to nitrogen when growing fruit trees, and not just for jujubes. I would rather be using a higher ratio of p and k to n than the other way around. And this desert earth, it seems to be the default setting! We don't even fertilize our trees. Grass clippings, wood chips/mulch and kitchen refuse are all they've been getting.

it is yes and no, as we bagged shanxi's this summer and it produced fruit, but not as densely as open-pollinated branches, and the fruits were smaller but at least were of the same quality as the unbagged ones.

while it was a "true positive" finding of being self-fertile, i am afraid they might be sub-par when grown by their lonesome. Of course, you could always graft other varieties and/or let your rootstock flower if you're not satisfied with your future shanxi's performance.

forgot to add, there seems to be more than one cultivar being sold as 'shanxi li'. Ours is the globe type(not the slender type have seen from other posters) we obtained from Roger M.


Thanks! what size pots do you use?


Most are 5 gallons. I have a few that are 3 gallons and a few that are 7 or 8 gallons.


I'm curious that if Jujubes are such good keepers why have I never seen them for sale in local markets? I think it's probably the only fruit that I know of that can be grown in my area that I've never seen at a grocery store. Well maybe Paw Paw but those are notorious horrendous keepers so that I can understand.


They're pretty common in California markets. In most of the US no one knows what they are so no one is trying to sell. Even in California there's a pretty small demand for them. And a pretty small supply.


It seems most fruit trees that are self fertile or partial self fertile would do better with cross pollination.

With that, I plant all three as I have just enough spaces for them. I also like the fact that the varieties I planted fruited the same year they were planted. I enjoyed the fruit, a bit like crunchy apples, not as juicy but good enough.


the better ones are still relatively rare and if available, too expensive for the tree sizes. As an example, @castanea has been growing jujus for many years, but is actually the first person have come across to say that black sea is excellent. So just about everyone following juju threads is in the testing period for wherever they may be growing theirs.
also, there's just not many people growing black sea's.
the fancy-named ones which fairly recently were supposed to be game-changing, namely honey jar and sugarcane, they are too small. They are good, but seem to have too fancy names for their actual tastes(at least where am growing them)
li is the most common that is also good eating and large, but when grown in very hot areas, may bear subprime fruits, so there are too many variables which complicate matters for the regular joe who'd want to keep things plain and simple.

it is only when one finds a variety which one likes and which is productive in one's area will things become plain and simple, since it is a no-spray and extremely long-lived fruit tree.


There is a professor from China who has been trialing Chinese jujube varieties in New Mexico for quite a few years. She has apparently allowed some locals to help her by trialing some of her varieties, but the only jujubes you ever see at the Santa Fe Farmers Market are still Li and Lang.


must be Shengrui Yao of NMSU.

yeah, and likely not even grown in new mexico, as the largest juju farms are still in CA, but so happens that those farms only grow li and lang. Imagine if those cali farms diversified into orchards of black sea jujus! But at 40$ for a scrawny 8-inch tall stick, will probably take decades to happen.


Yep. I started a separate thread on her trials. She doesn't seem to be in much of a hurry.



From the photo of Black Sea jujube in OGW catalog. The fruits looked smaller than Honey Jar and Sugarcane. But if the flavor is good then I would like to try them.



Smaller than HJ, how smaller can it be?

Maybe, @castanea can let us know.


Fruit size varies from very small to small-medium. They are definitely one of the smaller varieties. The smallest ones are smaller than HJ but the largest are quite a bit larger than HJ. But they are so good that even when I had dozens of other trees with ripe fruit, I would go look for any fruit on Black Sea.


Thanks for clarification. I had one Sugar Cane this year. It was small, so small people wondered if it was SC!!

Maybe, such a small size fruit with a hard seed could be a turn off to potential American buyers. Some grapes are small but they are mostly seedless. Small jujubes still have seeds as hard as a stone. It is not like I could crush them with my teeth like I do with grape seeds (sometimes).


What do you think about Massandra vs Autumn Beauty? Which one would you pick?