Northern Mid-Atlantic: SE-PA/MD/NJ/DE Region

Clarksville, MD here.

Hi I am about 15 minutes north of Baltimore in the county and I am planning to plant a bunch of bare root trees. I am wondering if you could share which varieties have been successful
Thanks!

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I’m in Arlington, VA. I’ve met a few of you nice folk connecting in person to trade plants and such. I don’t know how many of you are in the group buy with Hartmann’s that @lordkiwi put together. Maybe we could meet up somewhere when the plants come in?

Others I can think of in the area are @Robert and @NoVA, although I’m not sure I’ve seen him around in a while. I think @TheGrog might be in Richmond.

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I don’t see Va on the list. We must be the Southern Mid-Atlantic Region.

I would like to meet up with the group, was waiting to see when plants are expected. I moved up the extra berries to get the discount. I knew what I wanted anyway. Now I have to clear another row.

You folks that live away from the ocean in NJ and PA are closer to my climate than every other person that joined the Northeastern group who are all in z5 or colder- I’m less than an hour from NYC. You are also closer to my climate than those in coastal MD.

This regional thing is tricky- if I head towards the ocean the weather changes quickly and right on the coast it is dramatically different- about 30 miles distance by sky.

Why’d you give up on the fig?

Alan while I completely agree with you that the growing conditions aspect of the regional idea is more challenging, it is also relative. Your conditions are probably closer to the rest in your region, than, say, Southern California or Boise, ID. This is an important aspect. The primary thing I was hoping for in creating the Pittsburgh topic was to be able to network with those nearby. I found that aspect was lacking (but still present!) without a regional topic. My hope was to have local plant swaps and to be able to tour each other’s facilities (big or small) to foster new ideas and share tips that might be specific to our area.

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Philly-area, 6b. I really enjoyed the very excellent Backyard Fruit Growers club around here, but sadly they haven’t had meetings since COVID started. The grafting workshops were superb sources of scion wood; I’ve experimented with a lot I wouldn’t have otherwise. I’ve also neglected my own trees these past 2 years.

Grows well, with no help from me:

  • pawpaws
  • American and hybrid persimmon
  • mulberries
  • gooseberries
  • grapes
  • medlar (the fruit is mostly a novelty, though)

Grows poorly:

  • Asian non-astringent persimmons. They lived several years, and then died suddenly in a mild winter. I’ll try an astringent Asian persimmon sometime soon.
  • Pomegranate. But I didn’t really expect it to work out. Surprisingly, I do still have 1 specimen alive (out of 3). Maybe one year it’ll get lucky.

Mixed bag:

  • Asian pear. It’s making fruit, but not good fruit. I think this is mostly my fault for not thinning. Also, wasps took up residence under it, so I stayed away.
  • Maypops. I have one vine which is productive and delicious and easy to keep in check with the lawnmower. My other two vines are extremely aggressive and never ripen. I think the difference comes down to having 100% full sun, or some partial shade.

Grand plans:

  • Winecap mushrooms and chipdrop wood chips under my persimmons, inoculated late last season. There’s mycelium throughout the bed, so I expect this one to bear “fruit” this year.
  • I put in a peach last year. The soil is good, but the sun may not be full.
  • Replace some dying landscape shrubs with cornelian cherries and maybe jujube.
  • MAYBE drape a hardy kiwi on one of my wild mulberries.
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I browsed through the thread and added a few people to the map based on the locations they posted.

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I’d be interested in what varieties you choose – I’m hoping to establish some on my property and was wondering how to avoid any spraying. I’m starting with some figs this year, I chose cold hardy varieties for in-ground growth, excited to see how they do.

Several astringent varieties appear to do well in the area like Miss Kim and Saijo. I have a few others I’m trying to grow including non-astringent and pollination variant trees.

Do you mean which apple varieties I chose? @scottfsmith is probably the information source on this thread but I am adding Liberty and Empire. I already have an Enterprise that I hope might fruit for the first time this year but it got hit by cicadas pretty hard so we’ll see. My main goal with apple varieties is productivity in the absence of a lot of spraying and TLC since I am already kind of overcommitted with what I grow.

I’m very close to you.

What are your goals and how much maintenance do you want to do? Different kinds of fruit trees have different needs. Some need to be sprayed more than others. Some are fussier about soil conditions and sunlight than others…etc.

I think it makes sense to include NoVa and central Virginia piedmont region in this thread.

Is this about apples? There is no such thing as no-spray around here, unless you want very wormy apples. There was a thread on this not too long ago:

There’s no clear mark of what the best regions are, I am hoping they will emerge based on interest. If nobody starts a southern mid-Atlantic though we could just make this one be all mid-Atlantic. Meanwhile anyone is welcome to the chat here.

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I’m just outside Reading in SE PA. Trying to grow whatever I can with minimal inputs in light of climate change and an uncertain future.

Apples, pears, figs, blackberries, pawpaws, persimmons, etc etc.

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I’m in greater Princeton area. I get a couple of acres of former farm land. Also acquired another acre of wooded land that is totally free. This is a long strip of land that is adjacent to my lot. The former land owner sold his 200+ acre land to a developer who is building some houses. So this strip of land became land locked. The owner did not want to pay land property tax. So they transferred the land deed to me without any cost or tax. It is not of much use to me and I only harvested some humus last fall. I collected a bunch of wild black walnut. But I did not have the patience to crack them.

I used to grow vegetable a lot. But deer has the upper hand now. The only thing deer does not bother is fig. So I have a lot of fig trees in ground. They are still young. I’m trying various ways to keep them safe from the cold winter. Not sure what to expect this coming year.

Also grow jujube, persimmon, Asian pears and peaches. Cherry trees have not been productive due to the early or late frost.

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Yeah, I’m on the south side of Richmond. Thankfully I don’t have major wildlife pressure here, but the summer heat, humidity, and rain present a challenge for a lot of things.

Here’s to hoping a late freeze doesn’t kill absolutely everything again.

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The fig, a Chicago Hardy, was a nice gift from my parents. I planted it in the ground, not in a pot. Its first winter was a relatively mild one for my location. Some of the more tender wood died but it came back in the spring and looked like it was going to do well. The subsequent winters were all more harsh and it always died back to the roots even through each fall I wrapped it in burlap to cut down on wind damage. Over the years its regrowth came later and later in the year. The year before last it was not able to produce new growth until August. I did not really want to dig a trench in my lawn every fall so as to be able to bend the tree over and bury it, so I just threw in the towel and pulled it out. I recall reading somewhere that it might have been helpful to have some heat holding/reflecting rock wall behind the tree and that this may help hardened the year’s growth so it is not as sensitive to cold but I kind of think that if one wants to be in the fig business around here one really should consider big pots. There is some fellow in my general area who grows a lot fo figs, but he seems to only use pots. BILL'S FIGS