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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Saturday - March 13, 2010

From: New Milton, WV
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Edible Plants
Title: Fruit trees for West Virginia
Answered by: Anne Bossart

QUESTION:

What kinds of fruit trees would grow best in West Virginia? I assume apple trees would, but what kind of apple tree and are there any others that would grow well?

ANSWER:

Unfortunately, you have come to the wrong place.  The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower is devoted to the care, propagation and protection of plants native to North America and specifically to the area where they originated. Most fruit trees are so heavily hybridized that they no longer really qualify as native plants, plus most of them also originated in areas other than North America.  Apples, for instance, are native to Central Asia, even though we now think of them as American as "baseball, hot dogs and Chevrolet".

Your county agricultural extension service is your best resource for this kind of help. As a matter of fact, that is what they are mandated to do.  They will have advice on plant choices and cultivation techniques.

That is not to say that there are no fruit bearing trees and shrubs native to West Virginia.  If you visit our Native Plant Database and do a Combination Search for trees and shrubs for West Virginia, you will find fruit bearing plants that are more traditional. Such as:

Amelanchier canadensis (Canadian serviceberry)

Asimina triloba (pawpaw)

Prunus americana (American plum)

Sambucus racemosa (red elderberry)


Amelanchier canadensis

Asimina triloba

Prunus americana

Sambucus racemosa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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