[NAFEX] Failures

Lucky Pittman lucky.pittman at murraystate.edu
Wed Jan 22 10:44:17 EST 2003

mIEKAL suggested a failures thread.

I'll start off with those of mine I can think of.  Most have been MY fault, 
but a few have been shortcomings based on 'pushing the envelope' too far.

Sea buckthorn - no go; guess they didn't like my clay soil and hot summer
"Pakistan" mulberry - planted with graft union below ground, in 
anticipation of some winter kill.  Killed back to ground 3 consecutive 
years - even though they were relatively mild KY winters - re-grew 8-10 ft 
each year, but no fruit.  Well, actually, one year, we had a freak frost in 
late September, it re-leafed and put out immature fruits, which got nuked 
by the onset of actual winter a month or so later.  After the last 
killback, I dug it up, potted it up in anticipation of giving it to my dad, 
in AL - but I have no idea what happened to it after that -  it just 
Grapes.  - They just don't work for me.  I don't know if the area(s) where 
I've planted them are just too wet too much of the year or what, but 
they're coming out this spring, and I won't be planting any more - unless 
it's just to give some of the more cold-hardy muscadines or muscadine 
hybrids a try.
Stonefruits - I've never been much on 'em to begin with, but my wife wanted 
'em.  Borers worked on 'em religiously the first few years - most didn't 
make it through a second growing season.  Borer pressure has evidently 
dropped off on its own - most that still survive are 4-5 years old 
now.  Peaches, Jap hybrid plums, and pluots almost always break dormancy 
too early and get nuked, though I have had a couple of years in which 
Reliance or Veteran made a few peaches - most of which either brown-rotted 
or dropped to the ground - I can't even get my wife & kids to make the 
effort to pick a few peaches?!  Green Gage is huge - trunk bigger than my 
sizeable thigh; has had one branch that bloomed one time.  I keep thinking 
It'll do something, but not yet.
Figs - not really a failure, but I don't know if I'll ever get a fig off of 
any of them.  Winter-kill to the ground every year, then when they do set a 
crop on new growth, they don't have a long enough season to mature before 
First set of grafted pecan/hickory/hican that I purchased and planted died 
at my hands - I fell prey to that old gardening misinformation about 
amending soil in planting holes - guess I created a huge 'bathtub' for each 
of them - only have two surviving members of that first group of ten.
Apples have been kind of hit or miss - planted way too many of them before 
I came to the realization that I don't have time(or inclination, for that 
matter) to do all the spraying that they require.  So...as they slowly 
succumb to fireblight, etc., I'm replacing them with pears and persimmons.

Lucky Pittman
USDA Zone 6
Hopkinsville, KY

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