Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Prunus tomentosa, nanking cherry is a large shrub maturing about 10' x 10'. It grows pretty fast. I planted a 3 gallon plant 3 years ago and moved it to the Funny Farm last spring. It is about 4 1/2 tall now and produced a lot of good growth last season despite being recently transplanted. It is very drought tolerant. I watered it 2 times last summer, even though it wasn't showing any signs of stress but I had the hose out because the persimmons growing nearby were wilting a little).
It is cold hardy to zone 2 so ya'll who live up in the cold north lands can grow this.
The fruit is smaller that a "regular" cherry. It has a mild flavor. It produces abundantly. I have read on some websites that they require another variety for cross-pollination but mine produce well without any other varieties nearby that bloom at the same time. Hoochman says the seeds germinate readily so i saved some in the refridgerator and planted them in flats a month or so ago. I expect they will come up when the soil warms up.
Mine is growing in partial shade and produces well. This plant would be a good choice for a forest garden by planting it at the edge of the forest. It is a desirable nesting site for a number of birds. Many critters like to eat the fruits. Including me. I'm looking forward to a large enough crop this year to make a gallon or so of hooch.
I told ya it would bloom this week.