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Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Posted by hoosierquilt z10a/23 Vista Calif (My Page) on
Thu, Feb 28, 13 at 18:49

Okay, this is the third year in the ground for my Royal Lee and Minnie Royal cherries. They are right next to each other, about 5' apart. I cannot get these two trees to bloom at the same time. My Royal Lee started blooming about 2 weeks ago, and now my Minnie Royal is finally starting to open a few flowers. I fear by the time that the Minnie Royal has enough flowers open, the Royal Lee will be done. Any suggestions some of you might be able to give me, for an earlier blooming cherry? What about Royal Anne? Or, any other "Royal" cherry that I can get (that isn't strictly commercial and unavailable) that is going to start blooming in early February? Would really like to have some cherries one of these years.

Patty S.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

P...I have noticed that with my royal pair also. I did get about a dozen cherries the second year (in my 350 chill hrs avg.). Very impressive...they tasted good, as well. Watching this post.....


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Me, too, and I have about 560 chill hours here, so it's not for lack of chill hours. Had about 10 cherries last year, but most were on the Minnie Royal. I think I had two on the Royal Lee, and the all were exceptionally good. Which is why I'd really like to get a full crop. Hopefully someone can chime up as to bloom times with other possible cherry cultivar options.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Thu, Feb 28, 13 at 21:48

It's clear the DWN chart below isn't panning out for you and many others. You'd think DWN would put out a couple more of the low chill for pollination purposes. But they don't like to if they have commercial potential.

Here is a link that might be useful: cherry pollination chart


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

It's probably not helpful in your situation, but I have these two cherries in containers that get Fall/Winter shade, with the Minnie Royal getting first sun as the seasons gradually change. Right now I'd say both trees are ready to pop any day. So they may be close in timing, but my accidental placement of the two trees has helped bring them closer in my situation. I have these two in the ground as well in equal shade right now but they are probably too young to bloom, or if they will support a small bloom this year the shade is retarding their wake-up.

I also have a small Cristobalina cherry (200 hrs, self-fertile) which looks like it, too, will bloom very soon. Whether this old Spanish heirloom will have pollen that will work for the Minnie Royal, I have no idea, but it might work.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Patty,

I have a pair that have been in the ground for three years, on their fourth growing season. They are both just starting to bloom. This will be the first year that they bloom together.

I thought maybe it was due to the 400+ chill hours we got this year. Usually I am at 300 or less. Probably just a matter of time before yours are blooming together.

Have you had any luck with Apricot trees? Mine don't bloom heavily like my other stone fruit trees. Goldkist, Blenheim, Flavor Delight, Cot-n-candy. Haven't had more than maybe 10-15 apricots on a tree.

Tom


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Well, I got about 600 ch this year (didn't have my weather station reporting for a little bit, so guessing I got a few more than the 566 reported ch's). I was wondering if me getting so many chill hours was causing a problem! I sure hope year 4 will do the trick. I guess my frustration is I see no improvement at all. In fact if anything, they're farther apart this year. My apricots are the same, even my very low chill ones - few blooms, but they have much more fruiting spurs this year than last. For apricots/apriums I have Blenheim, Cot-N-Candy, Goldkist (new just last year), Autumn Glo, and Flavor Delight. Just added a Goldrush that was recently grafted, so that won't be reportable for a couple of years (CRFG apricot experiment for our chapter). More flowers or future flowers this year in general than last for me. Hopefully I'll get more than one or two apricots per tree this year. My one side of my pathway where most of my stone fruits are planted are not as shaded as they were the last 2 season, so maybe a bit more sun will promote more growth, and next year, more fruit.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

yes, this problem with Dave Wilson low chill cherry trees is posted all over the internet. The staggered blooming habits of Minnie Royal and Royal Lee is a definate problem. Pruning flowered branches and sticking them in the fridge is a pretty weak answer for most people. It appears Dave Wilson's nurseryman Mr Spellman wants us to wait 9 years until the bloom periods majically change. hmmm...


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Well, this could potentially be solved if DWN would consider releasing Royal Lynn & Royal Hazel to the retail market, since it is the earliest. Us little backyard orchardists are hardly a threat to the commercial cherry industry, and it surely would be nice to get more than 10 cherries from the Minnie Royal and especially what is touted to be the superior Royal Lee. Hopefully DWN will capitulate. All we can do is to continue to ask! Now, Tom Spellman certainly did not suggest that we wait 9 years?? I had a chat with him a while back and he thought year 3 or 4 would solve the bloom timing, and I think some of this also might have to do with everyone's specific microclimate as well? Not sure, but Tom E., who is not too far from me and has a climate similar to mine, is getting simultaneous bloom times in year 4. So, I will remain hopeful, and also hopeful to see Royal Lynn and Royal Hazel on the SOFT order form for DWN next season!

ps. Tom, thank you SO much for your very nifty "Get Chill" web site, for those of us with weather stations or near weather stations. Very helpful. For those that would like to calculate their chill hours, I've included the link to Tom's clever site. You need to find the weather station near, you, which can be found on www.wunderground.com, or use your station's ID if you have one.

Patty S

Here is a link that might be useful: Get Chill Hours Site


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Fri, Mar 1, 13 at 12:02

Patty:

You said even your low chill apricots have few flowers. Can you elaborate a little? Do they have many or some fruit buds that don't open? Are the blooms that do open staggered, a few then a few more open but most fruit buds aborting? I think that's a sign of insufficient chilling. I've got that this year on some apricot in my greenhouse and it is now looking that ways outdoors as well.

It's even possible that these low chill cherries aren't blooming together because one needs a little more chilling than the other. You think you're getting 600 hrs and the cherries are listed at 200-300 but they still might be short.

Low chilling environments vary so widely in timing and quality of chilling that it gets very complicated. We get lots of hours below 45F here. But when it's 25F at night and 65F by day the temperature isn't long in the 37-48F range where chilling is really effective. Then mix in an endless variety of warm and cold spells of varying lengths all mixed together and it is a mess of figure out.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Fruitnut,

My apricots usually have maybe 15-20 sporadic blooms and the rest of the fruit buds are aborted and die. What little blooms I get usually turn into fruit and the trees grow vigorously in the summer.

I got 400+ chill hours this year which is unusually high with the same result. I probably average around 300 or a little less.

Streaks of weather with daily highs in the 70s and 80s is not unusual in the middle of winter. That type of weather must do something to the apricots. My pluots, peaches, and nectarines bloom profusely, regardless.

My royal cherry trees definitely bloom better than the apricots. All of the fruit buds send out flowers. Just out of sync in the past.

Tom


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

According to the Dave Wilson site Royal Lee blooming a little later than Minnie Royal is normal when the trees are young.

Additional Notes
In low-chill climates and when the trees are young, Royal Lee tends to bloom a little later than Minnie Royal, pollenizing Minnie Royal but not being well-pollenized in return. Bloom overlap improves as the trees age, but Minnie Royal always out-produces Royal Lee.

Dave Wilson - Royal Lee


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Fri, Mar 1, 13 at 13:56

Tom:

Your apricot are acting exactly like mine that apparently aren't getting enough chilling. I usually get some fruit because what bloom there is sets well. Next year I'm upping my greenhouse chilling by a factor of at least 1.5. I've been thinking I was getting 700-1,000 Utah hrs. But a couple degrees too warm or too cold apparently does really make a difference. I could double chilling, in my greenhouse, but that's probably not needed.

Just for instance this year I ran the nights in greenhouse at 34-36F and that's a lot of hours because nights get cold here. Next year I'll run nights at 39-41F that's 100% chilling by the Utah model. 34-36F is no more than 0.5 hr chilling per hr. We've had probably at least 75 nights this year below freezing. So we loss a lot of chilling outside because it's too cold. In So CA I think lots of nights are in the low 40s, great but then days get too warm maybe even into negative chilling with highs in the 60s.

My sweet cherries that are apparently short on chilling bloom all their flowers. But the flowers are lacking in pollen and the female parts are in multiples or otherwise deformed.

I've also had pluots that abort flower buds at the time of bud swelling. Not so much this year but at least 50% abortion in years past. The bloom can also be spread out seeming to come in a couple of waves.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Okay, for me, my apricots/apriums are all low chill for the most part:
Autumn Glo
Blenheim (the standard apricot for our area)
Flavor Delight
Cot-N-Candy
Goldkist (too much shade and will be moved next season)
Golden Amber (just grafted up this season)

All are under 500ch. I get about 500 to 600 ch here. We have fairly long periods of time in the nighttime that we have temps from 36 to 46 degrees all winter long. Not unusual at all for temps to drop below 50 after sunset here in the hills. Plus, my stone fruit for the most part are in the lowest, "cold sink" area of my yard. My weather station sits above this area, so this year I recorded 566 ch and I didn't even start recording for several weeks, so I estimate 600 at least, and that was up at the weather station, not in the lower part of the yard. So, long story - not enough chill hours seems unlikely. I would say that my trees are still young, yet, and it's going to take a bit to get more blossoms. Like Tom, my Minnie Royal and Royal Lee, as well as several other of my stone fruit trees are much more covered in blossoms (August Pride, Desert Delight, Arctic Star which is blanketed). But, some of my apricots are a year younger than the other mentioned trees. Another poor bloomer last year was Bella Gold peacotum. Looks like it will bloom better for me this year. And, I see a few flowers on the Royal Lee missing the stigma, but not sure if they just dropped off because the blossoms are getting old, or if they were missing the stigma to start with. I'm with Tom in thinking when we get these warm ups during the winter, it somehow affects the apricots and to some degree, the plums. Maybe that is overall chill hours effect? My peaches and necatrines could care less. My plums and apricots/apriums seem to be more affected. Pluots oddly seem to be somewhat in the middle. Some look like they're going to do well, others, maybe not so much. It's a big experiment here for me, so a few more years of patience will give me better, more meaningful data. And Tom, I know that with the Minnie Royal and Royal Lee there was a bit of a lag time, but I'm now hearing possibly more than 4 years to get the timing better. That's a long time to wait. I went down to see my Minnie Royal just now, and it's finally really starting to bloom, so let's hope the Royal Lee flowers are still in tact to be cross pollinated. And, not a lot of bees down there, either. I need to plant some lavender and rosemary down there, which blooms now, and are huge, huge bee attractors.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Fri, Mar 1, 13 at 16:11

For me the fruit most affected by lack of chilling is the standard sweet cherries. Next most affected would be the higher chill apricots, then the pluots, and least peach and nectarine. Even Honey Blaze, Honey Kist, and Honey Royale sometimes listed as 900-1,000 hrs bloom fine where the others struggle.

I don't have the two low chill cultivars of sweet cherry just for the reason you folks are expressing. If they release a couple more pollinators I might try them just to compare. Or maybe you Socal folks need a group buy on a couple more low chill pollinators. If you had four cultivars you'd likely be set for pollination.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Well, you sound just like me, fruitnut. And, I tried a group buy for Royal Lynn and Royal Hazel, and we were told that DWN didn't have any, so we had to take them off the list :-( But, I was able to add the Honey Royale, Honey Blaze and Tasty Rich to this special order. Hoping I can get the Tasty Rich to break bud now!

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Steve, I meant to ask you, where did you buy your Cristobalina cherry?

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Patty:

I got the Cristobalina from The Arboreum Co.. Unfortunately it comes on Mahaleb and I have no place for a tree of that sort, so I tried grafting a section onto Krymsk 5 last year but that failed. I'm trying again this year since the rootstock stem died back but sent up a beautiful consolation sucker to work with. Looks like a take this time.

In the meantime I've been growing out the remains of the Mahaleb tree in a container for scion wood. You're welcome to some next dormant season if you would like to try it.

This post was edited by steve_in_los_osos on Fri, Mar 1, 13 at 18:23


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Fri, Mar 1, 13 at 18:01

Patty:

I've not seen a chill hr number for Tasty Rich. But it blooms very early, a couple days after Flavorella (the earliest), and sets one fruit on top of another. If it's not low chilling I'd be shocked. It is my most consistent apricot for yield and fruit quality, and the earliest ripening every year. Always 17-19 brix which is a pretty good way to start the summer fruits. I haven't seen a wart on it yet, but as always YMMV

PS: Patty I see DWN says 700 hrs for Tasty Rich. That must be one of those overblown initial estimates. I hope so for your situation.

This post was edited by fruitnut on Fri, Mar 1, 13 at 18:09


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Thanks, Steve. If you sent me enough scionwood, I'll graft you up a tree on Krmsk 5 or 6 for you. And that's good to know, fruitnut. I'm trying to think if I have the ch for Tasty Rich or not - not on my downstairs computer at the moment to check. But, does sound like a low chill variety if it blooms early. I am crossing my fingers for Tasty Rich. Does it need a cross pollinator?

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Fri, Mar 1, 13 at 18:14

Patty:

See PS above for a chill hr estimate on Tasty Rich. I suspect it is self fruitful the way it sets. But it may be getting pollinated by Flavorella or another later apricot.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

That's what I thought, fruitnut. I was thinking it was 700 ch but that I was going to take the risk. Good. We'll see how it does. I'm going to have to find a spot for it near either another apricot or a plumcot. Out of room down below, but I have the Golden Amber to put in, so maybe they're be close to blooming at the same time. Golden Amber is low chill as well.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

My neighbor across the street planted her Minnie Royal and Royal Lee trees in Jan. 2007. I'll have to mention it to her that folks have been told the trees' bloom timing should improve eventually. But at what age does it improve? Her trees have now been in the ground for seven + years. One tree is starting to bloom this week with lots of buds getting ready to open within the next week or two, and the other tree looks like it has only a few buds that will be open in time to pollinate any of the unopened flowers on the other. She has had okay harvests, but generally 75% one tree's flowers typically go un-pollinated because the other tree is a bit behind. 2011 was her best year, but we had almost 600 chill hours, not our typical 300-350 hours. I'll try to get out and take some new pictures of it this year. I am not saying she hates her trees, and she does pick cherries every year, just not as much as she could if the bloom timing was in sync.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Well, you're resurrecting my old message thread, and I still don't have the answer. I think the best folks to pose the question to, would be directly to Dave Wilson Nursery. See what they have to say. Let us know what they tell you.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

It looks like mine are going to be at least a few weeks out of sync again. My Royal Lee, which blooms later, never has as much fruit as the Minnie Royal.

I planted a bare root Lapins this winter. I am hoping maybe it's bloom will overlap with the Royal Lee. It is self fertile which is a plus.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Thu, Jan 30, 14 at 13:50

DWN has better pollinators but while they have commercial potential they won't likely be released to retail growers. For me in situations lacking chilling Rainier blooms earlier than Lapins. But I don't have those two low chill cherries so don't know if they overlap.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

I have Royal Ranier, but I don't think it's blooming, yet. And, it's quite a distance from my Minnie Royal and Royal Lee trees. I'll run out at lunch and look to see what's blooming right now.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

I also have a royal pair 2 years old. Both trees have leafed out and I haven't received more than 100 chill hours. I cant remember any nights which dipped into 45F. This year one of the trees has 40 blossoms while the other has only 5. Also, the one with more blossoms bloomed about 1 and a half weeks earlier. It still has some flowers that are about to open and the one with only 5 blossoms has no more blooms open.

How long does each blossom remain receptive to pollination?
I tried hand pollinating, but i am unsure if it worked.

How soon will I know if the pollination worked?

Is there any way to increase the number of blossoms on the tree with little blossoms?

Thanks.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Since my neighbor's two low chill cherry trees are across the street from me, my neighbor wants me to plant a cherry out front to help pollinate hers. I told her this morning, she might be waiting for another 8 years or so until the patents expire on the other low chill varieties from Zaiger used only for commercial production or even longer for the low chill cherries being introduced from BQ genetics.

Has anyone tried using Brooks to pollinate either Royal Lee or Minnie Royal? Some websites list it at 400 hours, and its an early cherry. It is the variety I go out of my way to buy at the farmers markets.

Here is a link that might be useful: The Grower article on early cherry varieties


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

I don't think you'll have much luck with Lapins pollinating either of the Royals--except for Royal Ranier. For me it blooms well after Minnie and Lee are done. Stella blooms at pretty much the same time as Lapins so that's out, too.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Ran out at lunch. Minnie Royal is starting to bloom like it did last season. Royal Lee has full buds and I anticipate it will probably start blooming in a week or so, so I'll have some overlap like I did last year. Not ideal or perfect, but at least there will be some. Lapin's, Craig's Crimson, Sandra Rose and Royal Rainier all closed up tight. and lianne, any idea where you can find a Brooks? I'd be interested in trying that.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

I have seen Brooks listed for sale at Cliftons Nursery in Porterville, CA. My husband is from the area and his folks still live near there. Cliftons Nursery has a website but I was unable to link it at the bottom of my post here. It is something like "buy plants online," but just do a google search for Cliftons Nursery Porterville. They have a wholesale website too, but you don't want that one.

Most wholesale commercial sources, like Duarte, list Brooks as 400 hours. Early Burlat, Coral Champagne, and Tulare, also have 400 chill hours. However, DWN lists all four of those cherries' chill hours as "N/A" on their site. Why no chill hours listed when other growers list the chill? The varieties have been around long enough now for the patents expire so they are no longer exclusive just for commercial cherry growers.

All four of those early ripening & moderately low chill cherries are the first varieties I see at the farmers markets in late April up to mid May, right around the time when my neighbor is usually picking her Royal Lees and Minnie Royals. I always ask the growers when I sample fruit what the variety name is. I thought since I see the fruit arrive around the same time, maybe they could pollinate for the neighbor's trees?

I was wondering specifically about Brooks as a pollinator because it is my favorite sweet cherry. If it can pollinate my neighbors MR or RL cherry here in Long Beach, I want to plant it, or if not, maybe I will still plant it but with one of the other three I mentioned, too. Most years we get about 400 hours, give or take 50 to 100 hours.

Coral Champagne is available for retail purchases at Trees of Antiquity, Tulare and Brooks are available at Cliftons, and Early Burlat is at Raintree. If anyone has grown these in Coastal Socal, I would love to here about their experience.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Well, as much as I like Clifton's, it's hard to buy a $19,00 bare root tree that's been plopped in a 5 gal bucket of dirt for $59.00 :-) I did find Clifton's in doing a Google search, and I've also emailed Duarte's to see if they can tell me what retailer they've sold Brooks to. So, hopefully I can find someone who will sell me the tree bare root. Or, even potted and local for $29.00. Clifton's is exorbitantly expensive for all their trees. You're buying some might pricey dirt that I've got an acre of for free :-) Not sure of the blossom time for Brooks, though, perhaps more Googling will turn that up, and then you'll know if the timing is suitable for Royal Lee/Minnie Royal. I do know it's very eary.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Thu, Jan 30, 14 at 22:54

According to DWN cherry bloom chart Brooks is a couple weeks late, see below. But then they say MR and RL should bloom together.

There are other possibilities like Black Pearl. But these dates will be climate and weather dependent. Black Pearl might work in one climate or weather sequence but not another.

Here is a link that might be useful: DWN cherry bloom chart


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Duartes services both Home Depot and Lowes. I'd see if the garden manager will order them for you on whatever rootstock you think will do well in your area that Duarte has. You can usually see on their website.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Well, Lowe's doesn't purchase large fruit trees from Duarte, only berry plants. So, I have emailed Duarte to see what other vendors in my area might carry this tree. Duarte isn't always the most helpful place. This is the best communication I've had with them so far, but no guarantees I'll find out a vendor. We'll see what they come up with for me. If I knew of someone with scionwood, I'd just graft my own tree.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Thank you for the info on Duarte not supplying trees to Lowes.

I bought my Parfianka Pomegranate tree (grown by Duarte) at my local Sprouts Grocery store last Spring. Sprouts did have some other stone fruit trees with Duarte tags at the time, as well as grapes and berries, but nothing I had to have or didn't already have. I don't remember any of the trees being cherries, and Sprouts only stocked the trees once briefly in late Feb or early March.

I did try calling Orange County Nursery in Moorpark. They took my number and said they would get back to me if they have a retailer here in my part of L.A. or O.C. that ordered any Brooks Cherries or Early Burlat cherries from them this year, although he wasn't optimistic. I didn't find out if they had any at their retail location in Moorpark. They did recommend maybe asking at H & H in Lakewood if they could special order one. H & H buys Persimmon trees from O.C. Nursery so they do make deliveries there sometimes. Either way, O.C. Nursery was really friendly and helpful.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

lianne, this is just my Lowe's area. Each Lowe's belongs to a district, and the decision as to what vendors to sku into their system is decided at the district level. So, it may be different for your Lowe's :-) So, more to the saga in finding a Brooks :-) One of the other inside sales folks did get back to me to let me know that they sold a large lot of Brooks to a distributor, who then in turn, sold them to Grocery Outlet. I happen to have two of those in my area, so I called one of them, and sure enough, they have a Brooks cherry tree there. I probably will not know what rootstock it's on, will ask Duarte if they can find out for me, as it's important to know how big it's going to bet (Colt is ridiculously precocious in my area, and really ends up being a standard tree, prefer Krymsk 6 or Weiroot 72). So, give your local Grocery Outlet a call if you have one, they may also have a Brooks available. I'll look and see what other cherries they have, and see if any others are very early. Brooks is about the earliest commercial cherries out here in S. Calif. I think I have a bag in my fridge right now, in fact. And yes, OC Nursery folks are very nice.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Fri, Jan 31, 14 at 15:46

Patty:

You're not getting Brooks fruit from the USA right now. The earliest here would by May. Maybe from Chile.

Did you notice Brooks blooms 10-14 days later than Royal Lee according to DWN. That's probably the Modesto area. I think it's a long shot that it would work in Vista. But trying is the only way to know for sure.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Of course, what am I thinking. In fact, it's probably a very late cherry from Chile, since it would be end of their season, right? But whatever it is, it is fantastic. And yes, I did see that. There really isn't a good pollenizer option for the Minnie Royal and Royal Lee. If we could find something in between the two of them, that would be ideal. But, I did go ahead and pick up both a Brooks and a Coral Champagne. That way, they can cross pollinate each other, if they're too late for the MR and RL trees. Now, where to put them both :-)

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Since I am a little familiar with how detailed plant patents have to be (seriously debated filing one recently myself,) I decided to search the patents on each of the low chill cherry trees for more help with the pollination timing. In the detailed patent descriptions of MR and RL, the blooming is listed 10 days & 11 days before Early Burlat. According to DWN's own bloom chart, that makes Tulare's bloom time pretty darn close for a pollinator for at least one of them, since one is behind the other. All three varieties (Tulare, MR, and RL) list March 1 or 2 as first bloom date in the applications. Whether or not Tulare is in compatible group to pollinate MR and RL is another matter.

I linked Minnie Royal's patent below. The patent number to look up Royal Lee is PP 12417, Brooks is PP 6,676, and Tulare is PP 6,407 and can be found at patents dot justia dot com

Here is a link that might be useful: The link to Minnie Royal's PP 12942

This post was edited by lianne25 on Fri, Jan 31, 14 at 20:18


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Well, the best option for a cross pollinator for Minnie Royal and Royal Lee is Royal Hazel, but there is just no way to get this cultivar. I've tried, believe me. Tulare - maybe. Black Pearl probably would be a better bet. So, we'll just see how the Brooks and Coral Champagne do. They're pretty tightly budded right now, but they're very young, so can't really judge for at least two years in the ground. Fruitnut, any suggestions for locating Royal Hazel? Lianne, let us know what you or your friend end up with, and let us know how it works out. MANY folks who have the Minnie Royal/Royal Lee pairing would love to find a better option.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Fri, Jan 31, 14 at 20:12

Can't help with Royal Hazel. And there is no assurance that would work either.

I imagine Minnie Royal and Royal Lee do bloom together as DWN bloom chart shows, probably in Modesto where the data probably originates, with ~1,000 chill hours. But apparently they don't always oblige where they're really useful, in low chill areas. In another year or another area all that could all change.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Steve, this is a persistent issue all over California. Talked to many of my CRFG friends and we all see the same thing - Minnie Royal blooming about a week or two before Royal Lee. And, I have 600 ch, so not that low. I even had Tom Spelling admit this to me. So, even DWN is aware of this discrepancy, even up in the Modesto area where DWN is located. If we could just find something that blooms in between reliably. That would be great as it would then cover both the MR and the RL. Now, all that being said - last season I saw the same thing - Minnie Royal starting early, but last season, Minnie Royal just kept blooming, and I had a pretty good crossover. Not a huge crop, but better than last year.

And, on another cherry topic, l see that I may have fruit this year from my two Sandra Rose trees. So, cross you fingers for me I got enough chill hours this winter. Not a very cold winter for us, and zero rain. So, the good thing is I won't have the PLC pressure as in past years. Bad thing, so fruit may set erratically with my more marginal stone fruits.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Patty, I am so glad you are trying Brooks and Coral Champagne. I can't wait to hear how they do. I if I lived in San Diego, I would jump in my car to one of the Grocery Outlets and pick up the same set of cherry trees for my neighbor for her B-day ;) She still has a little room for more trees.

I think you folks are right that Royal Hazel would be good choice for a pollinator, timing wise for MR and RL. The patent lists it as blooming 10 days before Bing. We just have to wait for the patent to expire in about 13 years for them to even consider releasing it to home growers! My neighbor's MR and RL would be 20 years old by then, and then it will take another 3 or 4 years to get one mature enough to bloom. I think we might try planting Tulare in the mean time.

Here is a link that might be useful: Royal Hazel Plant Patent #19920


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

The other very nice feature of the Coral Champagne is that it is naturally a compact, smaller tree (like Craig's Crimson). So, if space is a concern, it's a nice option. And, when Royal Hazel goes off-patent, I'll be grafting my own tree :-)

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Fruitnut, do you have either Black Pearl or Black Gold cherries going, and if so, can you tell me how they do for you? Talked to Stephen from Cummins Nursery, who is a great guy, and has been very helpful with certain stone/pome cultivars in the past for me. He tells me Black Gold is doing well in S. California, per reports coming back to them. Tom, do you have either of these cherries by chance? I think their CH's are going to be marginal for me, but I cannot find any info on CH's on either of these cultivars. But, going to give them a chance, along with a few other "marginal" cultivars for me (Lapins, Sandra Rose, Royal Rainier). So, it will continue to be the "So Cal Cherry Experiment" continuing saga...

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Sat, Feb 1, 14 at 14:51

Patty:

No neither of those. I'm happy with what I have and don't really need the early ones. Doubt they will eat better than the latter ones. After eating Orangered apricot last year the cherries aren't as inviting and they mature for me the same time. Now the relative maturity thing might change this year since I upped greenhouse chilling to 1270 Utah hrs this year, more than twice previous years. Both Robada and Orangered were swelling buds before I quit chilling. Whereas in the past they limped along with bloom after all the other cots were done.

I wanted this year to be one where I knew chilling wasn't a limiting factor and see how things respond. Cherries and a few apricots were the things that I think suffered the most in the past from inadequate chilling. Maybe I'll know a little more in a couple months.

The greenhouse went 69 straight days, 1656 hrs, with temperatures never below 39 nor above 57, mostly 39-51F. That gave, very conservatively, 1270 Utah hrs or 77% efficiency of chilling. It was a good year here for chilling efficiency. Lots of cold nights that I could hold at 39-41F with a heater. And dew points low enough to take 10-12F off afternoon highs via shade cloth and evaporative cooling. In southern CA one could probably double chilling hrs via shade cloth and evaporative cooling day and night. You won't need the heater like we do.

I was able to more than triple Utah hrs compared to the same period outside, 350 Utah hrs.

This post was edited by fruitnut on Sat, Feb 1, 14 at 14:53


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

My lips will never touch another apricot! No comparison to cherries. You guys must grow some really bad cherries!
I saw a CA nursery with some unusual cultivars, maybe some of these might be useful?
Look at White Gold too btw. Some other universal pollinizers include
Sam
Glacier
Angelia
Tehranivee
Kordia
Vandalay
Hartland
Sweetheart

Here is a link that might be useful: Burchell nursery


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Sat, Feb 1, 14 at 16:47

Drew:

I guess you've never had a good apricot. But then lack of experience doesn't seem to reduce your conviction.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Excellent, Steve, I still would love to see your greenhouse set up one of these days, you have done an exceptional job with it. Unfortunately for me, being relegated to growing outside, my choices are mostly limited to early varieties, as most low chill cherries are also obligatorily early. So, we'll see how Lapins, Craig's Crimson, Sandra Rose (very excited for this cherry), and Black Gold. Hopefully I can get enough CH's to get these to all bear. I"m only at about 450 CH right now, but have all of Feb. to go, still, and we're FINALLY in a winter weather cycle, so I may get up to maybe 500-550 once it's all said and done. But, will never get beyond maybe 650 ever, I don't think.

Drew, I don't think it's really an "either or" proposition. I love apricots as well, and have several cultivars, as well as some great apriums, plumcots, and pluots. Fruitnut has limited space in his greenhouse and only certain cultivars earn a spot. He has several excellent cherries, and is happy with those he's kept in his greenhouse. Orangered apricot has been a real winner, and I'd love to add it to my orchard - still looking for it here in California. I know Burchell's, a very nice bunch of folks. All varieties you've listed are much later than Minnie Royal and Royal Lee. Early Burlat is probably a possibility, but they don't propagate it. Black Tartarian requires more chill hours than I can provide it. Have Brooks and Coral Champagne, but even those two are still probably too late.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Quoting hoosierquilt

"I’m only at about 450 CH right now, but have all of Feb. to go, still, and we're FINALLY in a winter weather cycle, so I may get up to maybe 500-550 once it's all said and done. But, will never get beyond maybe 650 ever, I don't think.”

Based on my predictions, February will be much colder than January.

The first January cold episode will be on the 3rd �" the 4th.

The second cold episode will be on the 7th - the 9th.

The third would be right around the 20th.


Quoting Drew51

“My lips will never touch another apricot! No comparison to cherries. You guys must grow some really bad cherries!”

Have you tried an Angelcot apricot, yet?

If not, try one! They are the sweetest apricot variety that I’ve ever eaten. The bad news is that they are expensive….The price: $5.99 per two pounds.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Here is what the weather models are predicting a week from today.

http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/map/images/ens/t850std_f168_us.html


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Thanks, weatherman, that is very encouraging. I may get to 550 ch this winter, and that would be great.

Patty S.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Well it looks like you looked at all the possibilities. I guess at this point you need to bend Dave Wilson Nurseries about the problem. That many people are having this problem.
On apricots, they are just way too sweet for me. And the flavor is somewhat repulsive. I know I'm not alone as none of my friends will eat them either. OK, one friend Alice likes them, but that's it. For me it's the whole package, the sweetness, the taste, and the texture are all wrong. Hey I won't eat asparagus either. Now the pluots are OK, as they are more like plums. I don't even taste any apricot. Although so far I find them kind of bland. I doubt I have had a good one though. Here apples and cherries at even the grocery store are awesome! Our cherries are almost as crisp as apples. Grapes are great too. Again hard as rocks, nice! Cherries are sweet, but they have ton's of flavor, and so do apricots, I just find the flavor not good. And no, I will never eat another one.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Orangered was developed by Rutgers, you know they have developed a lot of great fruit! Yeah my apologies about the comments. It's my own limitations. It's great when somebody finds something that really is worthwhile.
Back to cherries, If DWN seems to have others that would work, we should say something to them in their forums. I would but I don't have these trees. This has been an interesting discussion and good luck solving the problem.


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RE: Better Cross Pollinator Choice for Royal Lee Cherry

Patty, When I first saw your post I was thinking"Rio" Vista but then looked up your city and found out your near San Diego. So different climate than me. I was interested in DWN Cherry trees and liked what I read about the Black Pearl so I looked into seeing if I could find a nursery which carried it. Unfortunately I found out same as you that is only available commercially. DWN I don't think has much control over when it will be available for retail as doing a Google search I found that the "Black" series of cherries is Patented by another company with Cornell U. so both Stark and DWN are just licensed to grow. I have a Sweetheart cherry I like very much and its grafted on Gisela 6. My local CRFG sold Colt and Mahaleb rootstock at their scion exchange, do you know any nursery I can get the Gisela 6 rootstock from?


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