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  • From: Jay Cutts <>
  • To: Devin Smith via nafex <>
  • Subject: Re: [nafex] Pomegranates for cold places
  • Date: Mon, 23 Jan 2023 21:38:42 -0700

I see what you mean about ripening time. Your season may not be long enough. It may also not be hot enough.

I am in New Mexico at about 4700 feet. We get temperatures here down to a few degrees below zero at times. I have my pomegranates surrounded by a wall of straw bales two layers high. The whole area is covered with a clear tarp and I have heat fixtures inside it that go on at 20 degrees.

My understanding is that the plants don't want to get below 15 or 20 degrees without the tops being killed. I have soft seeded varieties, which are a little less hardy than the hard seeded ones. Younger plants are probably even more susceptible.

The new leaves in the spring seem to be very sensitive to temperatures below 32.  The straw enclosures make them leaf out early so I have to keep them protected until we are way past a frost danger. The good news is that they get an earlier start at growing. You might also be able to extend the season with the kind of enclosure I described.

I've had the impression - though I've never tested it out - that dwarf pomegranates may be hardier and may ripen their fruit earlier.



Jay Cutts
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On 1/23/2023 7:18 PM, Devin Smith via nafex wrote:
Lucky mentioned rooting pomegranates. As it happens, I’m hunting around for a
pomegranate or two that would be viable in my high tunnel here in VT. I’m
generally of the thinking that ripening time is going to be the crucial
thing, not so much hardiness. I’m not sure if I’ll actually be able to winter
it over in the ground or if I’ll need to dig it each year. We have been duly
impressed by the difference floating row cover has made though, often 5-6
degrees. Also, it’s pretty remarkable how differently plants respond to cold
in the high tunnel. We registered 27 or 28 degrees several times inside with
no sign of frost on tender things like cucumbers, summer squash, and
tomatoes. We have an indoor/outdoor thermometer with one right at ground
level and the other at chest height, so temp stratification can’t explain it.
All of this makes me think that wrapping may be an option.

Those of you growing pomegranates at the margins, what is your experience
like? How do you protect or overwinter them? What varieties would you suggest?

-Devin SmithRockingham, Vermont
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