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Old 01-08-2019, 06:49 PM
 
Location: North Idaho
21,441 posts, read 26,802,880 times
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The zone tells if it is too hot or too cold for the plant to live. The chill hours are about whether or not the plant will bloom and bear fruit.

If you want apples in a low chill area, I suggest a variety called Anna. Anna is probably the best tasting of the low chill apples.

If a person lives in San Diego County, they can't grow apples in Del Mar, but you can grow apples in Julian. On the other hand, you can grow oranges in Del Mar, but not in Julian. Both towns can be shopping at the same nursery. The plants at your local nursery might be intended for a different micro-climate that is in their customer area.

Last edited by oregonwoodsmoke; 01-08-2019 at 07:21 PM..
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Old 01-08-2019, 07:13 PM
 
Location: NC
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USDA zones are cold survival zones. "The map is based on the average annual minimum winter temperature, divided into 10-degree F zones." Thus USDA cold hardiness relates to whether the plant survives at those low temperatures. I once read that it would be survival in 5 out of 6 years at that minimum winter temperature.

Once you take in to account that survival also depends on age of the plant, soil moisture, and a number of other criteria you might say that there is an error rate of plus or minus one half a zone when the grower claims his plant is hardy to a certain zone-level.

So the number of chill hours required for fruit set is almost entirely different since it is about performance, not survival.
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Old 01-08-2019, 07:36 PM
 
Location: North Idaho
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There is a third factor, OP. That's the last frost date. A fruit tree has to bloom after the last frost date so the blossoms don't freeze off the tree.

You also need fruit that will be ripe before the first deep freeze of winter.
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Old 01-08-2019, 07:56 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oregonwoodsmoke View Post
There is a third factor, OP. That's the last frost date. A fruit tree has to bloom after the last frost date so the blossoms don't freeze off the tree.

You also need fruit that will be ripe before the first deep freeze of winter.
Good points, however many if not most fruit trees with significant chill hours can handle some frost without damage to flowers and fruit. That's not to say a hard freeze for several nights in a row won't alter the fruit for that year. I have fruit trees that handle light spring frosts just fine and provide ample fruit afterwards.
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Old 01-09-2019, 12:01 PM
 
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I found the UC DAVIS website that has the chill hours data for my area in the past 5 years.

https://ucanr.edu/chillcalc/?control...ts&STATION=197

The # of chill hours range from 1,200 to 1,600 chill hours for my area.

(Edit: for reasons unknown, it gives me a different historical chill hours when click on link above. It gives me a range between 649 and 1,000 chill hours. On the 1,200 - 1,600 chill hours, I clicked on link below and choose “historical” and then “view data”. https://ucanr.edu/chillcalc/?control...rm&station=197)

If this is correct, then there’s a huge discrepancy between this site and the generic US chill hours map by USDA which only shows 200 hours in my area. One explanation could be USDA fails to take elevation into account when calculating chill hours and map the entire Los Angeles County as one chill hours zone. But if you go to the UC-Davis site, you can see a vast difference in chill hours within the county.

https://ucanr.edu/chillcalc/?control...nLos%20Angeles

Last edited by HB2HSV; 01-09-2019 at 12:14 PM..
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Old 01-09-2019, 12:24 PM
 
4,809 posts, read 8,522,172 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oregonwoodsmoke View Post
There is a third factor, OP. That's the last frost date. A fruit tree has to bloom after the last frost date so the blossoms don't freeze off the tree.

You also need fruit that will be ripe before the first deep freeze of winter.
Good point, OWS. When taken all these into account, I would suggest anyone whos thinking about planting fruit trees to learn about whats growing well in the local area, rather than depends on one or two indicators. Historical local experience speaks louder than a specific indicator like chill hours. As my post above indicates, lots of misinformation about local chill hours.
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Old 01-25-2019, 11:50 PM
 
Location: Phoenix, AZ
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OP, I guarantee that your area has more than 200 chill hrs. If you're in the high desert above the LA basin (like Palmdale), you get PLENTY of chill hrs for apples, peaches, plums. Someone goofed on that data.
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Old 01-27-2019, 01:47 PM
 
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I never had success with cherries in the Bay Area, nor citrus, but I have lots of success in SoCal, zone 10 with citrus. I have a 4x1 cherry tree in my yard right now, it’s still a twig. But I have gala apples. I think my philosophy with growing things is just plant it and see. If I don’t see any fruit in 3-5 years, it’s going to be gone and replanted with something else.
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Old 01-28-2019, 01:35 PM
 
Location: Phoenix, AZ
2,266 posts, read 1,570,998 times
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Originally Posted by NewbieHere View Post
I never had success with cherries in the Bay Area, nor citrus, but I have lots of success in SoCal, zone 10 with citrus. I have a 4x1 cherry tree in my yard right now, it’s still a twig. But I have gala apples. I think my philosophy with growing things is just plant it and see. If I don’t see any fruit in 3-5 years, it’s going to be gone and replanted with something else.
Do you mean USDA zone 10 or Sunset zone 10? If I'm not mistaken, there's not much Sunset zone 10 in southern CA. Where I am (Phoenix) is Sunset zone 13.
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Old 01-28-2019, 02:31 PM
 
10,778 posts, read 5,282,392 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DougStark View Post
Do you mean USDA zone 10 or Sunset zone 10? If I'm not mistaken, there's not much Sunset zone 10 in southern CA. Where I am (Phoenix) is Sunset zone 13.
USDA, Sunset has more than 23 zone if I recall, Im like in zone 23a or 23b, or maybe 24, who knows.
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