Northern growers, how did your figs and poms fare?


#21

To my amazement, I just looked at my Black Mission, and it is unmistakably budding up near the base of the trunk! These buds were NOT there during yesterday's thorough check. They must have grown within the last 24 hours!

All my figs are really digging the summer-like warmth we've been enjoying here the past two weeks.


#22

Here in dallas, at my home all figs died to the ground. All are coming back except for the Adriatic, it's gone. At my office 3 miles away and 3-4 degrees warmer due to being in the city, all survived but there was a little dieback.

Pom wise, all at my house survived though the ever sweet had about 50% dieback. At the office they're fine.


#23

I didn't realize Dallas got that cold in winter. I guess I just assumed that it was warmer than here. Now I don't know. What are Dallas winters like?


#24

We're 7b-8a. I think our problem is feb, it will be 80 one week, and then 20 the next. Once figs start to leaf out they're not cold hardy at all.


#25

Exactly. We had a few hour long freeze event roll through here on March 29th this year after a series of warm weather. That nipped new growth on some areas of some of my figs. Poms hadn't quite woken up, yet. They were fine.


#26

Now that everything is in full swing with the recent warm weather, I've been taking an inventory of my winter damage. This winter was colder than any of the recent past winters (-9F, previous low was -4F).

Salavatski pom- completely dead- I give up on in-ground poms and will try something else there.

Tam Kam and Izu persimmons- maybe they are just very late leafing out, but I fear that they are both dead. I tried to protect the Tam Kam, but it doesn't look like it was enough.

Ichi Ki Kei Jiro persimmon- died back to the snow line and then some- even though the snow was deeper, it looks like everything over a foot is dead.

The 2nd IKKJ, died back last year and regrew from close to the graft union. Before I wasn't sure if it was rootstock or IKKJ, but now I know it was rootstock, as it survived fine and has a different (narrower) leaf shape. I'll be grafting slightly hardier persimmons to this- regrettably none are non-astringent.

I had a few other die-backs which I wasn't expecting:
Blackberries- Triple Crown, Ouachita, and Prime Jan (died to snowline)

Gratitude grapes- My vine died back to close to the ground- maybe 12". The Jupiter and Faith nearby are fine and covered with mini-grape flowers. I guess that this is the "occasional winter injury to vines" from the UoA write-up.

Issai hardy kiwi- This one really surprised me. All my other kiwi's are well leafed out and getting bushy. The Issai has some sporadic growth, but there is still a lot of bare wood. Maybe the big crop it produced last fall sapped some of it's hardiness. It should be hardy to zone 5 and -9F is still within the 6A range. I think I'll still get some from it, but my current guess is that it will be only about half. But I am looking forward to a more substantial crop from my other kiwi which have lots of flowers ready to open, including a couple which haven't yet produced fruit.


#27

Bob

Sorry to hear about your Kakis and other trees not making the -9F. I think you should have a back up plan with the self fruitful and very large and excellent tasting Prok American persimmon (I got the wood for next year). All mine Kakis survived the -15F with the wraps and light bulbs in the center of the trees for winter protection. Drop me an email next February for the non-astringent Kakis or Prok woods. Take care.

Tony


#28

Bob,
Sorry to hear about the losses. Last year, I really wanted Tam Kam but Just Fruits&Exotics said it was sold out. I prefer non-astringent to astringent persimmon anyday. So, I went with Nikita's Gift from Burntridge instead.

Last fall, I wrapped my NG with burlap and stuffed leaves inside. It came out fine this spring. I don't know how long I want to keep wrapping this tree. I may do it for 3 years and see if it will tolerate zone 6 a.

Tony- can Prok be grafted to NG? If so, I'd love to have scionwood, please.

In the fall of 2013, I planted Kazake in ground next to the house's foundation in the warmest spot and protected it for the winter. The winter of 2013-2014 happened to be one of the harshest in memory. Kazaket did not make it. Since then, I gave up on growing pomegranates in ground in my zone.


#29

Sure you can graft the D.V on Kaki or Hybrid, that is how the Ukrainian came up with the Rossyanka and Nikita's Gift Hybrids. Drop me an email next February.

Tony


#30

Thanks, Tony. Will do.


#31

Most of the online sources for Nikita's Gift say zone 5, with a few zone 6. I actually got some scionwood for it this spring and am attempting to graft it onto the IKKJ's old rootstock. Hopefully the other trees have rootstock growth for me to graft to next year.

Thanks Tony- I'll do that. Is there any special trick to storing persimmon wood? I was grafting today and noticed that several sticks of persimmon wood (from multiple sources, including myself) were brownish and somewhat dry, while other wood in the same bag was fine. The only persimmon wood I have that clearly looks good (moist and green) is Tam Kam. So, while I'm grafting all of them, I'm not getting my hopes up.


#32

Hi Bob, I'm not saying this is why but it could be the source you took the scion from didn't have as good of vigor in the growth like from the bottom of the tree as to the top of the tree. Harvesting scion wood from wood from the top in full sun full of vigor is juicy and wanting to grow and you probably know this but I thought I would throw it out there. Sometimes it's tempting to get scion wood from branches that need to get pruned out that are in the shaded area of the tree thinking you can kill two birds with one stone.


#33

That sounds just like my approach. Looks like I need to look higher for my buds. Thanks for the tip. Bill


#34

Bob

I remembered that Grover " The Ace of Spades" always dipped the cut end of the scion into warm wax to retain moisture. His scions remained fresh for a long time. I will do this method to store my scions next Spring. This should help the persimmon scions to stay fresh.

Tony


#35

That's a good idea. I've always been nervous about hurting the wood by getting too hot, but as long as it only covers the absolute tip it can always get trimmed off the next spring before grafting.

Most of the dry wood was thinner caliper than the Tam Kam. That could be because the thicker wood retains moisture better, or because the thicker wood got that way by being more vigorous. I'll need to check the thin Tam Kam wood from the end of a thick branch to see if it is also green.

Has anyone else had this issue with persimmons in particular? Of the 82 varieties (apples, pears, peaches, plums, jujube, apricots, ect) I'm grafting this spring, the 4 persimmons are the only thing I've seen this with.


#36

Bob

I think Doc Farwell's Grafting Seal will work great and you don't have to worry about the warm wax.

Tony


#37

Some persimmon wood I cut the previous winter went bad, it ended up that the tree lost half its shoots from winter injury and these shoots I had collected already had winter injury I believe. Maybe some of your wood had that. In general persimmons are more likely to self-prune shoots (they are more like grapes in this regard) and if the shoot you got was in the process of being self-pruned it may not be any good. If the wood is not green don't bother grafting it. PM me if you need some replacement wood, I still have random leftovers in my fridge.

I agree with @tonyOmahaz5 on the Docs, I'm a convert to it. It also does the best job of making an airtight seal on the whole scion, the parafilm wrap has little pockets of air that collect moisture.


#38

You have to let the wax cool to almost to where its starting to get thick again or will scald the scions.
I like using bees wax. I have a tube that's soft like putty. I use it when grafting to seal the ends and cuts.


#39

Thanks Scott! The wood looked good and I'm excited about the varieties. I originally thought that there would be a lot of extra, but I used up everything from 3 of the 4 varieties. In addition to multi-grafting the rootstock regrowth from last year, I also gave up on the IKKJ (two years in a row of massive die-back) and grafted it within a few inches of the ground.


#40

Great, hope they work out. I didn't have good spots for all of them so will be looking forward to hearing how they do for you if they don't make it for me.