Review Of The Wonderful Pomegranate Tree

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A review of the 'Wonderful' Pomegranate provided by Brent Wilson of Wilson Bros Nursery
by Brett · All Zones · Fruit Trees · 0 Comments · July 03, 2014 · 10,547 views

Wonderful Pomegranate

Punica granatum 'Wonderful'

The 'Wonderful' Pomegranate is a hardy fruit bearing variety with a fabulous fall harvest. Wonderful is, by far, the most widely planted pomegranate in the US, and for good reason. It thrives almost anywhere in USDA Zones 7-10. It adapts to a variety of soils and resists drought, heat and pests. And, last but not least, it's a healthy super fruit!

Pomegranates have been cultivated since ancient times, and the fruit is increasingly popular for its health benefits. The juice is chocked full of vitamins, antioxidants and other health advantages. The crimson fruit around each seed has a unique tart-sweet flavor and is popular eaten whole or used as a juice or syrup. The seeds are also highly nutritious and are soft enough to be easily chewed and eaten. You will be amazed at how much sweeter your tree-ripened fruit will taste than those purchased at a store.

Though the fruit is delectably delicious, some people grow the Pomegranate not for the fruit, but simply for its ornamental appeal. In the spring the leaves emerge with an uncommon splash of bronze. An abundance of showy, bright orange-red flowers follow and encourage the hummingbirds who love them. During summer, the glossy dark green color of the oval leaves catch the midday sun. Fall brings even more appeal, as yellow leaves and a harvest of the 4-inch, round red fruit proclaim a successful conclusion to the season.

Growing on average to about 8 to 12 feet tall with an equal spread, Wonderful pomegranate fits nicely into smaller gardens and garden spaces. They can be grown as a shrub or small tree. As a tree, the form is very similar to crape myrtle. If you prefer a tree they’re simple enough to prune into a desired shape; simply remove lower branches to the desired height. Their roots are well behaved, so you can plant them next to your home, patio or a fence.

An established tree can produce 100 pomegranates or more each season - plenty for storing and sharing. The tree is self pollinating, meaning that you only need one to produce fruit. Still, each tree will produce even more with a second pollinator. Pomegranate trees can live 100 years or more and produce into an old age.

The difference between pomegranates and many other fruit trees is the wide range of soils in which the pomegranate will grow. From heavy clay, black loam, lime rich soils, dry rocky hillsides to sandy soil, the pomegranate will grow almost anywhere. Though pomegranates will tolerate most any type of average garden soil, they grow best in fertile, deep, loam soil that is rich with humus, as do most other fruit trees. Just make sure the soil is well draining. Constantly soggy or wet soil can cause problems with their roots. Brief periods of flooding won't cause problems provided the soil is well-draining. If you live in an area that can experience long rainy periods it's best to plant pomegranate on raised beds or mounds. I do this in my landscape due to the heavy clay soil that tends to hold a lot of moisture during the winter season or during extended periods of wet weather.

The soil pH tolerance for pomegranate is wide as well. They will grow in moderately acid to moderately alkaline soils that range from 4.5 to 8.2 on the pH scale. That being said, they thrive and produce best between 5.5 to 7.2, where most average garden soil fall between anyway. When growing on quick-leaching sandy soil pomegranate will require additional fertilization for good fruit production. Where I garden in mid Georgia, the heavy clay soil tends to lighten fruit color, but if the fruit is for home use this should not be a problem as the fruit taste will be the same.

The pomegranate will tolerate some shade, full sun (at least 6 hours of direct sun) is best for good vigor, strong branching, and fruit production.

Once you’ve tasted a Pomegranate from your very own tree, you’ll never want to be without one again. The fruits ripen at different rates, over a long harvest season. Plus they store better than any fruit I grow. Just keep them in a cool dark place, or refrigerate them. Unlike many other fruits, pomegranates resist bruising and discoloration.

If you don't have a pomegranate growing in your yard, start enjoying the beauty, health benefits and unique flavor of this amazing fruit!

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