[NAFEX] winter, or spring hardiness of apricots

Alan Haigh alandhaigh at gmail.com
Tue May 12 11:04:30 EDT 2009


I'm been growing most of the Harrow series of apricots for almost 20 years
in the Northeast from Z 5A to 6B.  Can't figure out what makes apricots
tick, or stop ticking.  All I know is they are fragile and unpredictable.
Sometimes they survive our worst winters only to die after a relatively
minor one.  I have some understanding of the physiology of hardening off and
I find no explanation related to that.

I used to think it was the early spring cold that killed them, just as they
come out of dormancy but I've got a couple of dead ones in different sites
this season, one of them very close to the Hudson river where it is very
wide and temperature almost never get below zero, so presumably any sudden
drops in temp would be moderated.  We had no unusually precipitous drops in
early spring or winter this year.  Both trees went into dormancy in
beautiful shape by all visual evidence and the weather was fine as the
growing season closed.

One thing I've learned is planting them by a south wall doesn't help and
only makes them more tender.  Same with east walls- haven't tried west.
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