Skylar Rae Tip Top sweet yellow cherries

So… I had wanted to grow this new variety for a while, but C&O Nursery seems to be the only place that stocks them. And I later theorized that they probably wouldn’t do very well here in the stormy humid East (it is a particularly firm cherry, and would probably crack open terribly if rain occurred around harvest). But I always wished I could sample the fruit.

So what to my wondering eyes should appear… this evening at my local Wegmans:

This cherry is a real looker (insert catcall whistle here):

Yes… I took this photo tonight, with my own camera. (I was inspired by all of the beautiful photos the Arboreum Company posts on its website).

But I must say-- I am a little disappointed in this cherry’s flavor and mouthfeel. They are HUGE cherries, and beautiful blondes taboot, but after those novelties wear off… I’ve had much better cherries elsewhere.

They are indeed firm; almost too firm. A bit juicy, but not as juicy as I’d like. Low on flavor. A few of them are sweeter than others, and those ones really are nice. They are grown in the rain shadow of central Washington state-- just east of the Cascades.

I’m sure I like Rainier better, and even Emperor Francis (in a good year, when it’s clicking on all cylinders). Or maybe I just got a bad batch, or they’re having an “off” year.

Anyone else have any informed thoughts on this newbie?

They were probably picked too early or were grown in too much shade as evidenced by the small amount of blush. I called them once about ordering a tree. But the trees were only for a select few commercial growers. I guess the select growers can ruin anything. Then again maybe it’s not that special.

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Good report and professional looking pix!!! Man that’s a pretty shot of the sliced one.

BTW, seeing those with the stems attached, coupled with Fruitnuts comment about them maybe being picked too soon got me wondering…

I’d picked some Carmine Jewel and had delivered some to friends and family who had just recently planted CJ’s, so they could make a pie or jam, etc., and see what they could eventually expect to be harvesting. At one of my stops the gal had a friend who seemed really surprised that there were no stems on the cherries - said she thought all cherries had the stems come off when they were picked.

I had no answer, other than that none of mine retain the stems.

I just assumed it was maybe a sweet cherry thing since all I grow are tarts and on all mine the stem stays on the tree. (If I try to pick one before it’s ripe it’ll generally pull the pit and give me a pitted cherry, leaving the stem and pit on the tree. Once in awhile I’ll get a stem but not too often)

Must be variety specific I suppose, because I’m thinking commercial growers use tree shakers and maybe other mechanical means, and some sweet cherries I see in the stores have stems on 'em.

Just something I never thought about before I guess.

Nice report.

Yeah. The stem thing is variety specific.

Raniers do pretty well in the northeast. They make strong trees and even if they crack they will taste good if they don’t rot too quickly. All sweet cherries seem to crack here anyway unless you have one of those rare years where it doesn’t rain for the two weeks preceding ripening. .

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I believe they pick sweet cherries with their stems on so there shelf life is longer