Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Username: Password:

Author Topic: Overwintering tree seedlings/saplings in zone 5b  (Read 118 times)

kykeion

  • Member
  • Karma: 15
  • Posts: 121
  • Trading Score: +4
Overwintering tree seedlings/saplings in zone 5b
« on: October 10, 2017, 12:35:57 am »

Hello friends.

This spring I planted close to 100 stone fruit pits (peach, cherry, apricot, nectarine, plum, etc) after stratifying them in the fridge for a few months.  Germination rates were pretty low, but I wasn't terribly surprised given the age of some of the pits, unknown viability (I have cracked the pits of delicious peaches and found the kernels undeveloped), and potentially insufficient stratification time.  Anyway, those that did germinate grew really well for me this summer and are now 12 to 16 in tall.  I didn't do a great job of tracking whats what, but I believe most of them to be apricots.

My question is what is the best way to store them over the winter (they are still in pots obviously)?  They should be hardy in my area, but I am concerned that being in pots they will be more susceptible to the cold.  I also have some apple, pear, mulberry and grape sapling transplants also still in pots. The goal was to get them all in the ground, but that is not gonna happen till next spring unfortunately.  I do have a greenhouse, but I have found that dormant trees don't really tolerate the warmer temps that the GH reaches during the day.  I also have an unheated, but insulated garage, but I'm not sure if the lack of light would be problematic (I realize they will be dormant and leafless so no photosynthesis, but don't know if some sort of light cycle is still necessary).   
Logged

Auxin

  • Senior Member
  • Karma: 70
  • Posts: 342
  • Trading Score: +41
Re: Overwintering tree seedlings/saplings in zone 5b
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2017, 10:32:56 pm »

Your right, being in pots will lower their hardiness by at least 1 full zone.
The longer young trees grow in pots, the weaker the adult trees will be. Theyre more than big enough to plant to their permanent locations, but it may be a bit too late for this year.
What I would do is plant the whole pots so their rims are level with the ground, then mulch over the top of the pots. In the spring water them and when they put out growth you can pull the pots up and plant the trees to their permanent locations.
Logged

LIBERTYNY

  • Senior Member
  • Karma: 56
  • Posts: 495
  • Trading Score: +69
Re: Overwintering tree seedlings/saplings in zone 5b
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2017, 05:37:50 am »

 Personally.  I would just plant them in their final location

 Once they go dormant you can burry them with leaf litter, keeping in mind that it compacts. and tends to blow away so use chicken wire.  This will keep them much warmer.
Logged
III%

kykeion

  • Member
  • Karma: 15
  • Posts: 121
  • Trading Score: +4
Re: Overwintering tree seedlings/saplings in zone 5b
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2017, 11:12:59 pm »

Thanks for the input! Looks like I will be digging some holes this weekend!
Logged