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How To Grow Pomegranate?

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Growing pomegranate requires full sun and tolerates summer heat. The fruit is an average of 3 inches and ripens in the fall. Inside the tough outer skin are seeds enclosing a juicy pulp. The juice is tart and the seeds are slightly nutty. Pomegranates are often juiced and can be used to make jelly.

Plants are available from nurseries usually in five-gallon containers. To encourage a tree-like form, select one trunk and remove suckers on a regular basis. Three to five scaffold branches should be selected starting about 10 inches above the soil level and spaced 4 to 6 inches apart along the trunk. As the tree takes shape, select 2 or 3 shoots per scaffold branch. Annual pruning consists of removing dead wood and crossing or interfering branches. Remove suckers as they appear.

Pomegranate trees are self-fruitful, so a second tree is unnecessary for fruit production. Severe fruit drop during the first 3-5 years is normal. Mature trees seem to set and hold fruit better than younger trees. Fruit drop is aggravated by over fertilization and excess watering.

Once established, applying nitrogen fertilizer can enhance fruit quality and plant vigor. Young trees should receive about two pounds of 8-8-8 or similar analysis fertilizer in November and March. Mature trees can use twice this amount applied at the same times.

How To Grow Pomegranate?How To Grow Pomegranate?

Growing pomegranate produces a red dye that can be extracted from the flowers, a yellow dye from the skin of the fruit, and a black dye from the roots. The wood is also very hard, close-grained, durable and has been used for building agricultural implements.

The plant also contains several alkaloids and tannins in the bark and roots and has been used medicinally for more than 3,000 years. For instance, they are purported to paralyze tapeworms so that they can be purged from the body.

How To Grow Pomegranate?

Growing pomegranate in zones 7 to 24 is best and possibly in zones 5 and 6 if grown against a south or west wall. They thrive in the heat and need long hot summers to produce well. They tolerate many soil types including very alkaline soils but deep loams are best. They are drought tolerant but need regular deep irrigations for good fruit development. They tend not to fruit too well in cool coastal areas. Pomegranates are hardy down to 12 degrees F. roughly. If grown in a container they can be brought indoors during cold weather or grown in a greenhouse.

How To Grow Pomegranate?

When growing pomegranate trees a common problem is splitting of the rind. This is usually caused by heavy watering following a period of drought. Keep soil moisture relatively even to avoid this problem.

When you receive a pomegranate tree bare root, do not allow the roots to dry out. Put roots in water for an hour or two then plant or pot immediately and water in. If you receive your tree in a container then transplant the entire root ball taking care to disturb the roots as little as possible. Water regularly during the growing season when the plant is young and less often as it becomes established. Spray with Sevin or Malathion or insecticidal soap if insects become a problem.