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I live in Tennessee. Can I start Mt. Rainier cherries from the pits and expect them to grow well here?
Yes. As long as you live in the more mountainous part of Tennessee where winters actually get cold. Cherries require four distinct seasons.
As for starting them from pits, I'm not sure hybrid cherries can be started this way. You can certainly try. However, it will cut years off your time frame to buy rainier cherry saplings instead.
In another life, I lived at the base of Mt Rainier-Mt Rainier Cherry trees must be grafted to produce viable trees and fruit. A very easy online search for "Mt Rainier Cherry Grow" provided good replies. You can try a search yourself and this site for more information:
If I buy a Rainier cherry tree, do I have to buy 2 of them?
Hardiness Zone: 3b
By Nikki from WI
I don't know the answer to your question, but I do know that in my state (Washington) the growers plant Van Cherries near by to help in pollinating both the Raniers & the Bings.
If I were you, I'd contact your local "Master Gardeners"
You can simply Google "Master Gardeners WI questions"
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We have a Rainier cherry tree, and we would like to get fruit, what steps must we take?
By Rich Blizzard from Paris, IL
Some cherries need another tree for cross pollination. You might want to check if this is one. (05/09/2009)
Also, I read in a post below about an ant issue. We have the same issue. Our problem is the birds eat the cherries, but leave 1/2 eaten cherries still in the tree. The ants love these broken into cherries and are after the sweets. I have found dish soap and water mixture will kill the ants and not harm the tree at all. Works great with grape vines too. Give it a try.
Hardiness Zone: 1
Brian B from Portland, OR
You can germinate any type of cherry pit, regardless of the type of cherry tree it comes from. Remember though, the cherries harvested from a tree you germinate from a pit will actually be a hybrid of two parent plants, and the resulting cherries may end up tasting bitter.
A cherry pit only contains one seed and is classified as a drupe (also known as a "stone fruit"). Drupes are fleshy fruits that have a hard stony pit containing a seed. The soft, fleshy part of the fruit (under the skin) is derived from the middle layer of the ovary, and the pit is derived from the inner tissue layer of the ovary. Cracking open the pit will reveal a single seed formed from the ovule contained within the ovary of the flower. Because there is actually only one seed inside each pit, only one tree will germinate. Peaches, cherries, plums and coconuts (although, they are slightly modified versions), coffee, jujubes, mangoes, olives, and apricots are all examples of stone fruits or drupes.
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