Zone 7 (New Mexico) recommendations!

I am planning on expanding my orchard next spring— by a LOT! Trees are in a flood irrigated pasture, and get about 3-4” of water every two weeks, mid-March thru October. I drag some hoses out there for some supplemental watering a few times in the winter, and maybe once or twice in extreme summer heat. Location: South Valley, New Mexico. (Technically 7b… 7a is one block away lol). Trees planted 2015-2019, some bare root online, some in pots from local nurseries.

Here’s what I have so far:

  1. Plumcot, Spring Satin (stopped fruiting after my apricot died— I think it needs a pollinator now)
  2. Peach, Elberta — FANTASTIC!
  3. Nectarine, Fantasia — very sweet and delicious, if I can get them before the Japanese Beatles do.
  4. Pear, D’Anjou
  5. Peach, Red Haven — lots of growth, but no fruit yet, even in years when Elberta has
  6. Raspberries— Polana Fall, Heritage Fall, Prelude Summer, Double Gold Fall, Jewel Black Summer
  7. Blackberries— Triple Crown, Prime Ark Freedom, Apache Erect, Ouachita Semi Trailing (the berry situation is a little nutty— it’s nice having berries ripening at different times all season long, but it’s impossible to properly train so many varieties on one system)
  8. Persimmon, Hachiya (no crop yet)
  9. Pear, Bartlett
  10. Apple, Goldrush Semi-Dwarf (first crop coming this year— excited!)
  11. Apple, Macoun Semi-Dwarf (no crop yet)
  12. Cherry, Lapins x2 of them
  13. Asian Pear, Chojuro (brand new, no crop yet)

I have room for 13 more fruit trees. Been doing tons of research (New Mexico State University has some really good articles). Here’s what I’m considering:

  1. Apple, Cox’s Orange Pippin
  2. Apple, Arkansas Black
  3. Apple, Jonalicious
  4. Apple, Golden Russet
  5. Peach, Intrepid
  6. Jujube, Honey Jar
  7. Plum, Stanley
  8. Plum, Methley (hopefully a pollinator for my plumcot)
  9. Plum, Golden Nectar
  10. Apricot, Harglow
  11. Apricot, Harcot (late frosts are problem here— considering late flowering varieties for this reason).
  12. Mulberry, Silk Hope (morus rubra grows wild around here and is delicious— eager to try a new variety!)
  13. Asian Pear, Korean Giant

Other favorite varieties? Success with these ones? Would greatly appreciate any and all suggestions!


Arkansas Black apple should do well. (It tends to bear light crops though.)
Fuji and Cripps Pink maybe. You have several months to do the studying for next year.


@squiggy where are you located, I didn’t see where in your profile.


Maybe NM since the OP mentioned New Mexico State University.

That would also fit with a zone 7a dry climate.

Of your two lists, I see that you have only one Euro plum. Stanley. Though it is self fertile, production improves with cross pollination.

Same with the cherry, Lapins.

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(New to this!). South Valley of Albuquerque, NM.

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I have two Lapin cherries (every other variety I’ve planted is one of a kind). From what I’ve read (on this blog: Albuquerque Fruit Growing ) Stanley European plum is very productive… I was thinking they’d be nice for prunes and jams, and that one tree would probably fit our needs.


You are smart to go by what works for your area.

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Arkansas Black seems to have a history in New Mexico, though i haven’t encountered it yet around here. I’m very interested in fruit that isn’t available at the grocery store. Quality is more important to me than quantity, since we’re mostly growing for ourselves + friends and family.

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You are a dry climate so if it was me I would add stuff that can grow with low moisture like the tastier earlier fruiting jujubes that nmsu has trialed and proven at Alcade, such as Honey Jar, Sugarcane, Li, Black Sea and a few others maybe?


Yes! Honey Jar jujube is on my wishlist. I will do some research on the other jujubes you suggested. Honey jar seems like a popular one on this site.

Despite ostensibly being in the desert, we have good access to irrigation water on our property. We’re very close to the Rio Grande (water table is just 7 feet deep in the summer), and are on a major irrigation ditch that services some very large alfalfa fields. 15 or so opportunities to irrigate a year x 4” of water each time = 60” of water. Humidity is always low, of course, and long-term our access to water depends on melting snowpack up north, which may decline over time.


I had trouble getting “Goldrush” to ripen in Santa Fe. Probably will barely make it in the South Valley. It’s naturally dwarf. It stunted out on me.

Too late for this year, but I would be very very careful to make sure it doesn’t overbear going forward.

Alcalde station near Espanola reccommends “Ginger Gold” apple. Growing well for me but no fruit yet.

Pretty good luck with “Polly “ white peach.

“Castleton” plum based on Harvestman’s recommendation looks promising.

Also “Geneva Mirabelle” plum although it was a bit slow to come into production.


@kokopelli5A Thank you so much for the suggestions! My Goldrush Apple seems to be doing well so far. Planted it from bear root two years ago, and it has more than doubled in height, branched our nicely, and is loaded with apples this year. I have been worried about heavy branches breaking, and have been thinning the fruit. Fairly new to this— what’s the reason for thinning earlier in the season rather than later?

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Earlier thinning is much more effective in assuring return bloom the next yr. Plus earlier helps to increase fruit size and quality.

I have Goldrush in Alpine TX at 4500ft elevation. It’s ripe here in late September. I would think it would ripen even in Albuquerque. If you are warmer then I think it would be fine.

If you are worried about limb breakage I’m thinking your GR has way too many apples. Go out and remove half the fruit right now. You’ll be amazed how much thicker the fruit looks once it gets some size.


@fruitnut Done! :raised_hands:

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Preordered most of next year’s trees this week. Feels good to have committed to something, though I’ve enjoyed all the research!

  1. Apple, Winesap
  2. Apple, Arkansas Black
  3. Apple, Rubinette
  4. Peach, Rio Oso Gem
  5. Jujube, Li
  6. Plum, Stanley
  7. Plum, Golden Nectar
  8. Apricot, Harcot



Good choices, I would think!

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what is your experience with growing the cox orange pippin?

I actually opted for these three varieties instead:

  1. Apple, Winesap
  2. Apple, Arkansas Black
  3. Apple, Rubinette
    Planted them this spring. All are doing well, but the Rubinette looks especially happy. Huge leaves!
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Just be aware the Winesap won’t pollinate anybody else…and it blooms a little late.
(Grafting some other variety onto a limb would be good insurance in case Arkansas Black or Rubinette turns biennial or something.)