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Mr. Smarty Plants - Sweet cherry tree for New Mexico

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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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