- Apple, plum, wild cherry, and wild peach, are all native fruit trees to California with unique characteristics and cultural significance.
- Propagation methods for these fruit trees include seed propagation or grafting, and pest management techniques involve regular pruning and monitoring for common pests.
- Wild cherry trees are used for making furniture, tools, and musical instruments, and their growing conditions vary depending on the species.
- Wild peach is a coveted addition to any fruit collection, but growing it can be a challenge due to its unique characteristics.
1. Apple Trees
You’ll be interested to know that the California evergreen cherry isn’t the only native fruit tree in California.
Did you know that there are also wild apple trees, specifically the Malus fusca found in northern California?
These trees are typically shrubs or small trees. They’re known for their disease resistance and ability to thrive in a variety of soil conditions.
If you’re interested in propagating these trees, you’ll want to take cuttings from healthy, disease-free trees and root them in a mix of perlite and peat moss.
When it comes to pruning, it’s important to remove any dead or diseased branches, as well as any branches that are crossing or rubbing together.
And when it’s time to harvest, you’ll want to wait until the apples are fully ripe and easily come off the tree when you give them a gentle tug.
2. Plum Trees
Plum trees are described in detail in ‘The Illustrated Plant Nut’, including efforts to domesticate wild varieties and the potential for crossing with Japanese or French plums.
The book provides information on the different California plum varieties, such as the native California wild plum, Prunus subcordata, which has two varieties found in the uplands of coast and interior.
The author also discusses the Malus fusca, Oregon crab-apple, which is a shrub/small tree found in northern California.
The book delves into the cultivation of plum trees, including the efforts to domesticate wild plums in California.
It also discusses the potential for plum tree grafting and hybridization with Japanese or French plums.
The author provides detailed information on each fruit, including the California evergreen cherry, Prunus ilicifolia, which has beautiful dark green foliage and delicate-flavored fruit.
Additionally, the book mentions the Superior evergreen cherry, Prunus ilicifolia ssp. lyonii, found on Catalina and Santa Cruz islands, and the wild peach or wild almond, Prunus Andersonii, found on the eastern slopes of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
3. Wild Cherry Trees
If you’re interested in exploring the diverse range of wild cherry trees in California, there are several varieties to discover in ‘The Illustrated Plant Nut.
The California evergreen cherry, Prunus ilicifolia, is a beautiful tree with dark green foliage and delicate-flavored fruit.
Another variety is the superior evergreen cherry, Prunus ilicifolia ssp. lyonii, which is found on Catalina and Santa Cruz islands.
The wild peach or wild almond, Prunus Andersonii, is another interesting cherry tree that can be found on the eastern slopes of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
Growing conditions for wild cherry trees vary depending on the species.
In general, they prefer full sun to partial shade and well-draining soil.
Fruit characteristics also vary, but many have small, edible fruit that can be used for jams, jellies, or eaten fresh.
Propagation methods include seed propagation or grafting, and pest management techniques include regular pruning and monitoring for common pests such as aphids or mites.
Historically, wild cherry trees have been used for medicinal purposes by Native American tribes, and their wood has been used for making furniture, tools, and musical instruments.
4. Wild Peach
Get ready to discover a unique and tasty addition to your backyard orchard with the wild peach, found on the eastern slopes of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
Known scientifically as Prunus Andersonii, this wild fruit resembles an almond but has a distinct flavor that sets it apart from other stone fruits.
Efforts to domesticate the wild peach have been ongoing, with some success in producing cultivars that retain the unique flavor while increasing the fruit size and yield.
However, the wild peach remains a rare find, making it a coveted addition to any fruit collection.
If you’re up for a challenge, consider growing this wild gem in your Eastern Sierra orchard.
Before You Go
Looking to deepen your knowledge of California’s diverse flora? I have a few other article about Cali you might want to check out.