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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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Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

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Wednesday - January 23, 2013

From: Santa Fe, NM
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives, Edible Plants, Trees
Title: Sweet cherry tree for New Mexico
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

What is the best kind of sweet cherry tree to plant in Santa Fe, NM? I have apple, apricot, peach and pear. Would like cherry unless it is a bad idea.

ANSWER:

The only cherries native to New Mexico are Prunus emarginata (Bitter cherry), Prunus serotina (Black cherry) and Prunus virginiana (Chokecherry) and, although, they are food for wildlife and are used for making jelly and wine, they are NOT really sweet enough to eat as fruit.  What you are looking for is one of the cultivars of Prunus avium (Sweet cherry), a native of Europe, Asia and the Middle East.  Our focus and expertise are with plants native to North America so we really aren't in a position to advise you. Your best bet for help is the New Mexico State University Extension Service.  You can find contact information near home on the Santa Fe County Extension Office site.  The Santa Fe Master Gardener Program might also  have some suggestions for you.

 

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