[NAFEX] Exploring kaki hardiness, climate, and nuts
rosholdt at erols.com
Sun Nov 27 10:33:44 EST 2005
Note that extreme cold is not the only determining factor when the
microclimate is subject to a week of 20 deg. with no snow cover, then a
week of 55-65 deg. weather in January! You in zone 4-6a can usually
count on cold weather remaining cold and usually some snow cover. But
where fluctuations occur, it can be very destructive to the trees and
fruit. (The good news is it is hard on ticks and fleas too.) A rule
of thumb is that late bloomers do best here in 6c-7a central Virginia.
Even cold weather protection is dangerous. Example: We have to protect
enough to keep the 15-18 degree temp. winds off the figs, but not
enough so that the figs break dormancy in late February. Can't take the
protection off until the end of March - and it is risky then. Maybe
I'll take it off in stages this year.
I agree with the premise that if you can get seeds from local tree fruit
(or from one zone south), raise them and see what they do! That is how
many of the old fashioned varieties were created. Our climate is
changing, and sometimes extremes and changes can encourage genetics to
vary a bit more widely - this can help if you are looking for "trees
that can survive on the edge". Years ago I read somewhere that there
was evidence that most new species arrived in short periods of time -
during times of stressful climactic changes. If new species can start,
certainly new varieties could be expected under artificial stressors
(moving seeds from their zone, etc). I foresee more extreme weather on
the way as more and more trees are cut down on our continent and more
desert areas are created. My response is to raise as much fruit as
possible (on trees). but I digress...
Back to persimmons. That Hana Fuyu sounds like a possibility - for us.
I have the Ichi Kei Ki Jeiro and it has suffered little or no damage
from anything - including the scourge of Japanese Beetles. It is not
bearing yet, only about 2 years in the ground. I don't spray the
Asiminas and Diosporos with anything. I do weed and fertilize.
I have a question. I bought a Meader and it was producing seedless
fruit. Then the male bloomed and now the fruit has seeds. If I took
the male out would the Meader and Ichi care? I means in terms of
production. Seedless is nice for making pulp.
I am interested in nuts, but really am not ready for planting 60 foot
(when mature) trees. I'd have to take out 60 foot trees to do it! Any
suggestions for 20-30 foot nut trees for my zone?
Finally, I'm shy about trying the local hickories and other nuts. Can
someone recommend a reference book or three about dealing with local
wild foods that can REALLY help me identify them and experiment with
them? I have the standard "Eastern Forests" and Field Guides, but
nothing is really there about how to "eat 'em". I am concerned enough
about tannins I am afraid to try the acorns.
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