Jujubes- Our New Adventure


Ahhh everyone here had some success with grafts,mine success is 0 :pensive: First time ever that I don’t have any success at all !! I dont count walnuts cause I tried them for fun.
I made 17 grafts in total. First I suspected that scions were dried, and they were but not completely, but now I think that mother tree is the problem. 3-4 grafts was from shanxi li, my other tree, and those scions was very fresh. Made a cut from one tree and grafted to another a minute later. And those grafts was the hardest for me, ever. That time I couldn’t stand without support cause my foot injury. You don’t know how disappointed I am.
So could it be that tigertooth is not good for grafting? Tigertooth is the mother tree.
But some good things happen.
I have 1 seedling of 4 varieties.

Also I fertilize my big ones, tigertooth and shanxi li, and they put enormous growth in very short time. Now I have a problem with branches.

This is the shanxi li. Finally I have more wood on it. Tried the method 1 cut stops, 2 cuts grow.
Tigertooth had already fair amount of branches but now looks like this.

Probably I had to support them or tie them but I thought is better to ask here. I dont have any experience with this situation and dont know who to ask.


“Made a cut from one tree and grafted it to another a minute later”

That probably was a reason your graft failed. What you did was using freshly cut green wood to graft. I don’t know if it would work with jujubes (it works with some fruit trees but not a popular method).

You need to collect wood for grafting (called scionwood) when your trees are dormant in the winter. Store scionwood in a sealed plastic bag in a fridge. The time to bring scionwood out to graft is when your tree start to have tiny leaves in spring.

There are many threads here about grafting. There are tons of good grafting videos. Here is Stephen Hayes’s. Please check them out.


Also, I think you over-fertilize your tree. That’s why the growth is excessive.


I think nothing wrong with your Honey Jar not producing at this point. I believed mine didn’t produce at all the first 3 or 4 years before they became productive in full sun and as they get older.


I’m optimistic on Dae Sol Jo. That was one of the varities I grafted onto the GA866 and it produced a fruit the first year. It skipped last year, like most of my jujube, but I think I see some on it this year (it’s higher up, so I can’t keep as close an eye on it as some).

I’ve had several Li for a while and haven’t gotten any production from them yet. But, I do see a few fruits on two of them this year, so there could be some hope for it. But, I wouldn’t look on it as a great bet to be productive here.

Another that I’m trying now is Redland. It is supposed to be productive, large like Li, and early season. I should know more in a few years.

Edit: I visited the property where the Redland tree is and even though it was just planted this spring, it has several small fruit on it. Of the 5 jujube at the property (all newly planted), the Redland and a Honey Jar are the only ones with any fruit.

Those are great! I’ve never grown a jujube that sized.

I don’t think it is that kind of spongy texture. At least mine wasn’t. The jujube you can buy in Chinatown often have a real spongy texture. My Shanxi Li just had a thick and not crisp texture. I don’t think it was a lack of water, as we were getting plenty of rain by that point (late Sept/early Oct) and the fruit from So on the same tree as a Shanxi graft were crisp, juicy and crunchy.

How crisp/juicy is the Shanxi Li for you out West?

Grafting is something that takes a bit of practice to get good (or at least OK) at. But there are a few things which can really improve your chances.
1.) Don’t graft to newly potted rootstocks. This can work, but you have a whole lot more margin for error when grafting to established trees.
2.) Use parafilm on the graft union to seal in water. You may have done this, but I can’t actually see the graft union in your pics. The parafilm gives the plant more time to heal before the scionwood dries out.
3.) If you do grow in pots, don’t use normal dirt as the grow medium. It is too thick and poorly drained. You would want some potting mix or to make your own mix with a combination of perlite, pine bark, peat, etc.

I remember seeing a post (maybe on the Facebook group) by Cliff England saying that jujube should always have a support post. I haven’t generally done that, but I have had some which leaned and could use a post. If you are asking about the long branches, I think that is something you could probably shorten with pruning.

That could have been his issue, if the wood was actively growing when he cut it. But I wanted to mention that it is possible to cut and graft at once. I did that this spring in early April. In fact, the only jujube grafts I made this year (only 16, consisting of Bok Jo, Honey Jar, and Dae Sol Jo) were cut and grafted in the same day. The trees were just starting to wake up with swollen buds, but no leaves. It worked pretty well, with almost all the grafts pulling through. I think 2 or 3 failed, at least 1 of which was on a surprising sucker (where a tree had died a few years ago).

Overfertilize?? Your the one who suggested I fertilize my trees more :slight_smile:


That’s a valid point. East coast is a hard core environment for fruit. Let me reshape my question. What would be the top three for sugar and production on the east coast?


Yes, to me, jujubes do well being fertlized but I think @lilke trees showed signs of excessive growth. I know because I did that with my pears :confounded:.

I don’t know when @lilke cut his scionwood and grafted it a minute later. If he did it in an early stage of his trees waking up like you did, he could have been successful. If he cut scionwood when scionwood is actively growing, the chance would be a lot less. Agree that there are other matters involve in grafting. Hopefully he can check out Stephen Hayes videos.


Most jujube can get a ton of sugar, generally 25+ brix. The only ones which may not be sweet enough would be the sour jujube used for rootstocks, or the spongy ones from Chinatown (10-12 brix…ugh).

The real differentiator is texture. Crisp/juicy like Honey Jar or yielding somewhat dry like Shanxi Li has been for me and Tippy.

If you can find Bok Jo (maybe Englands has it, as that is where I got the wood from), it has been the most productive. So (I got it from JFaE) is also very productive. Think both make very good fruit, but Honey Jar and Sugar Cane are a bit better. HJ is probably the smallest from that group.

So, given that it could be hard to find Bok Jo, I’d suggest Honey Jar, Sugar Cane, and So.


The instruction that came with GA3 that if I keep it in a dark, cool place, it will last several years.

The reason it says not to spray on fruit is because GA3 cannot be washed off by water. I guess eating fruit covered with tiny amount of GA3 would be OK as I saw an article suggesting spraying different stages of cherries with GA3 to make the texture firmer.


I think I saw something like that for jujube as well. But it was sprayed at harvest time and at much higher concentrations. It was supposed to keep the fruit firmer for longer during storage.


@castanea, Like Bob said we generally have a lot of moisture where we live. Maybe, the word “spongy” is a poor choice of word to describe Shanxi Li. It is not crunchy, for sure.


I should have sprayed more yesterday but by now, the solution is no good. It is a pain to mix such a tiny amount again


Whether the solution is still good, may depend on how much light it has been exposed to. The article I saw said it was good for about a week if kept cool and dark.


Some Li fruit can be very good. The average Li fruit though is not as good as Shanxi Li and Dae Sol Jo. It’s not as good as Li2 either.


Fresh jujubes should all be crisp, more or less, if they have received enough water. The first year I had fruit on Shanxi Li it was not crisp, so after that year I gave it more water and it was crisp. It’s hard to convince people that if jujubes don’t get enough water the fruit will never be completely crisp. It’s hard to do because jujubes can grow and survive on very small amounts of water. People therefore assume that’s all the water they can use. But if you want crisp sweet fruit, more water is required. It doesn’t matter how much water a different jujube tree needed because every tree is different. Saying that Doug doesn’t need water because Dave had enough water just doesn’t work. Everyone is different. And it doesn’t matter if you subjectively feel your trees have received enough rain. If your fruit is not crisp, your trees need more water. I’ve grown at least 40-50 different cultivars of jujube for 30+ years and they all produce crisp fruit if given enough water. If your trees have good water for 2 straight months and then you hit a 10-15 day dry spell, the fruit may not be crisp. Not only do they need enough water, but fruit quality improves if they have regular water.

By the way, date palms, to which jujubes are sometimes compared, can also survive on small amounts of water, but good fruit quality also requires an awful lot of water.


That bucks conventional wisdom, as there are some jujubes which are classed as for drying, rather than for fresh eating. I take it that some of the 40-50 cultivars that you’ve grown are classed as for drying?

One of my examples was actually from the same tree- the main part was So and a graft was Shanxi Li. Though you could have meant that one cultivar’s fruit needs more water than another, regardless if they share the same root system.

It is something I will keep a closer eye on. I’ve been watering most of the jujube at my house this year, so I may need to compare fruit quality from here vs that from un-watered sites.


Thai Milk-Jujube (Ziziphus mauritiana) :blush:


The name in Thai is Fresh Milk, a very popular variety.


Jujubes that are classified for drying are simply regular crisp jujubes that dry well and taste good when dried. I’m not sure how my post bucks any wisdom. Some dried jujubes taste great when fresh and some don’t. Sihong is very good fresh or dried. Black Sea is excellent fresh or dried. Orange Beauty is excellent fresh or dried. See this list from NMSU that lists many cultivars that are good when eaten fresh or dried:


Even if a jujube is primarily consumed as dried, it should still be crisp if eaten as a fresh fruit.


Who sells potted jujubes?


True, but they also have a page specifically for those used at least primarily for drying:

In fact, I see that 3 of the cultivars are explicitly labeled as “not suitable for fresh eating”. So while Shanxi Li may just need extra water to get crisp, water may not be enough to make some varieties crisp. I think I had a sample from one such variety, Zhang Huang Da 4 years ago (another graft on the So), which was very dry (much more than the Shanxi Li).

I think both Scott and I may have had a similar experience with Huping (one of the ones on the NMSU drying page).

But I definitely recognize that even in my area some extra water may be needed to ensure good texture. In the above link(almost 4 years ago), I said:

One other note- my So weren’t as good this year as last. Then, we had a day of rain last week. The fruit I picked in the day or two after the rain were much crisper and juicier- very tasty. I think I need to irrigate when they get close to ripe if we go a while without rain.

Just Fruits and Exotics
Edible Landscaping

I think Burnt Ridge and One green world sometimes sell small (1 gal) ones. But for me, the small ones take a very long time to establish.