Importance of Pollination
Some fruit trees and shrubs cannot pollinate themselves, or if they can, then it’s not highly effective. In this case, a different variety must be planted nearby to ensure a large harvest of fruits. Plants that generally require a pollinator are blueberries, pears, apples, plums and sweet cherries.
Other fruit trees and shrubs are self-pollinating and do not require another variety to produce a large crop of fruits. Nearly all strawberry, raspberry, grape, blackberry, peach, nectarine, sour cherry, and apricot varieties are self-fruitful. In this case, no second pollinizing plant is needed.
When in doubt of which variety to plant, most white-flowering crabapple trees are a great pollinator for any apple tree.
Pro Tip: Triploid (three chromosomes) apples have sterile pollen that will not pollinate other trees. You should plant at least two different non-triploid varieties when growing a triploid apple. Triploid (sterile) varieties include: ‘Arkansas Black’, ‘Jonagold’, ‘Liberty’, ‘Lodi’, ‘Spartan’ and ‘Winesap’.
Northern Highbush (Vaccinium corymbosum) – Best for eastern and northeastern United States with cooler climates.
Southern Highbush (Vaccinium corymbosum x darrowii) – Best for regions with mild winters and higher average temperatures.
Rabbiteye (Vaccinium ashei) – Best for southeastern United States with long, hot summers.
Sweet Cherry (Prunus avium) – Best for eating fresh or for baking and
Sour/Tart Cherry (Prunus cerasus) – Best for baking and preserving.
Pro Tip: Sweet and sour cherries can cross-pollinate each other, but ornamental
flowering cherries usually won’t cross-pollinate sweet or sour cherries. Sour
cherries are generally self-fruitful and don’t require another tree to produce
European (Pyrus communis) – These trees produce sweet, juicy fruits that are the traditional pear shape.
Asian (Pyrus pyrifolia) – The types of fruit produced by these trees are round and crisp (similar to an apple).
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