[NAFEX] che or jujube in Zone 5?

lee reich lreich at hvc.rr.com
Sat Mar 18 15:30:52 EST 2006

I'm not in the midwest but am in Zone 5. In my experience, the  
problems with those two fruits are some winterkill and just barely,  
or not enough, time to ripen the fruits. A bit of winterkill is not a  
problem because both trees will flower on new growth. My outdoor  
jujube died back below the graft but every year the seedling  
rootstock bears a few fruits some of which ripen (but don't taste  
very good).

I grow che in a pot and am able to ripen quite a large amount of  
fruit, letting them finish off in the greenhouse. There are no  
cultivars of che and repeated selection from among a large number of  
seedlings might be able to result in earlier ripening clones. For  
fun, I'm going to graft che onto a stem of an osage orange tree  
growing outdoors. The graft is possible and perhaps the stem will  
grow and bear fruit.

(My book, Uncommon Fruits...) has a chapter on each of these fruits.

Lee Reich, PhD

Books by Lee Reich:
Uncommon Fruits for Every Garden
A Northeast Gardener's Year
The Pruning Book
Weedless Gardening

On Mar 18, 2006, at 1:04 PM, Mark River wrote:

> Hello, wondering what experience fellow Midwestern Zone 5'ers have  
> had with either che or jujube?  These fruits sound interesting, but  
> the literature I'm finding states that zone 5 might be pushing the  
> northern limit.  Do they winterkill, is spring frost a problem, or  
> is the issue not ripening the fruit?
> Thanks,
> Mark
> Zone 5a, Western Iowa
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