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what learning resources do you recommend?

Posted by cousinfloyd NC 7 (My Page) on
Tue, Feb 28, 12 at 11:19

I know there's lots of stuff on the internet, but it's often difficult to find the good stuff. I'm interested in all sorts of learning resources (books, online tutorials, nearby classes, etc.) to learn more about fruit, especially simple backyard style propagation and grafting, but also cultural controls for pests and diseases, pruning advice beyond the very basics, and all sorts of other random things, like how and when to transition pawpaws from shade to full sun, etc., etc. What books or other learning resources can you all especially recommend?
-Eric
Yadkinville, NC


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: what learning resources do you recommend?

Well, first I would say go to your land grant college web site for the best advice for growing fruit trees in your particular state. That's where your cooperative extension resides, and they are there to support both agriculture as well as home gardeners. That is also where your state's Master Gardener program resides, and your local Master Gardener's web site is also usually full of great resources. I've included a link to your local extension services. Be sure to scroll to the bottom of this page for the second part, Cultural Practices.

Patty S.

Here is a link that might be useful: North Carolina University Extension Services: Producing Fruit Trees for Home Use


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RE: what learning resources do you recommend?

Well, you're on a very good one right now. ;)

You can also visit a local nursery that sells fruit trees and tell them that you're interested in learning all you can, and ask if they can put you in contact with anyone. Often times the bigger nurseries will even have their own classes they put on, or will know all the local growers, etc.

For books, your local library will be invaluable, and the librarians will know the place inside and out. They will be able to help you find any kind of book you could possibly want. For other classes, you can always call your local colleges and ask them directly. Lots of community colleges will have good selections of various gardening courses you could take. Could be a good way to find reading material as well. Find the course that looks like it would be interesting, see what the textbook for it is, then go buy the textbook used off Amazon and read it on your own.

As for the pawpaws, I can answer that one now.

PawPaws require shade until they are over a foot tall, then they're usually good to go for full sun. This usually means they need shade for the first year. However, they produce best as mature adults in full sun.

The easiest way to do this (if you don't have actual woods to plant them in) is to build them a shade. You can get shade cloth from most nurseries, and you'll only need to keep it for one season. So just grab some bamboo poles, stretch the shade cloth over them. Since you don't have to worry about moving it higher with time, just put it about 2' above the ground, make sure it's wide enough to keep the sun off the seedling as the day progresses(so a couple feet wide), and thats really about it.


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RE: what learning resources do you recommend?

Thanks for those recommendations. Some of those are a little more beginner-oriented than I'm looking for. Of course, finding books/resources isn't hard but sorting out the really good ones with the detailed information from all the general overviews and books that are mostly just "filler", etc. is what seems hard. Surely some of y'all have specific book recommendations, no? For those of you that use multiple different grafting methods on multiple species, how did you learn all the technical details to be able to do that?


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RE: what learning resources do you recommend?

I thought I should share some apparently good resources I've found since posting my earlier question, several thanks to off-list recommendations from members of this forum and things I found through other threads here. I don't have the experience to judge the relative merits of the advice, but these things all seemed good.

It's still not quite as long/thorough as I'd like, but the best general grafting and budding information I've found so far is "Propagation of Plants by Grafting and Budding" a "Pacific Northwest Extension Publication" PNW496

A similar publication that I thought was next best is "Grafting and Propagating Fruit Trees" from Penn State, code #UJ255

NC State also has a fairly short publication "Grafting and Budding Nursery Crop Plants" code #AG-396

There's an outstanding photo series with explanations of bark grafting on the Citrus Growers Forum in the tutorial section titled "Limb Bark Grafting Pictorial Demo"

I also really liked an article about "Easy Field Grafting Technique for Persimmon Trees" by David Osborn. It's basically another bark grafting tutorial.

The only good book I've found so far is very outdated but really good anyways. The book pre-dates a lot of things we might just buy nowadays, and I appreciate that more self-sufficient approach. It's "The Art of Grafting and Budding" by Charles Baltet, available as a free e-book online.

And on a random topic but with lots of information that would also apply to other tree species, I found the blog "Northern Pecans" by the research and extension specialist for Kansas and Missouri, William Reid, really outstanding and full of all sorts of great stuff.

If anyone else has further recommendations, I'm always interested in finding outstanding learning resources.


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RE: what learning resources do you recommend?

I found this grafting video helpful.

Here is a link that might be useful: Cleft Grafting


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RE: what learning resources do you recommend?

To add to the list, there's a great pdf titled "Propagating Pecan and Black Walnut in Missouri"


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RE: what learning resources do you recommend?

Another good publication on nuts is titled:
"NUT TREE GROWING IN KENTUCKY" (ID-77)


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