How about eating Pomegranates? Do you like to drink and enjoy the health benefits of its juice? Would you like to have a Pomegranate plant in your backyard? If your answers are yes, you must know how to grow a Pomegranate.
Growing a Pomegranate requires time, care, and patience. You must also check on Sunlight exposure, adequate Watering, Weekly Care, Best Soil, Fertilizing, Pruning, Pest and Disease Control – although it’s mainly resistant. However, it’s one of the more rewarding plants and well worth growing
How to grow Pomegranates
Pomegranate plants grow in shrub form and are one of the easiest fruits to keep.
They can be grown as either a tree or a shrub. It depends on how you choose to prune and train it. You can shape and develop it into a tree form.
These plants are resistant to diseases and pests, making them a more low-maintenance option for gardens. Some Pomegranates are dwarf in size – about only three feet – while others can grow between 20 to 30 feet in height.
Pomegranate fruit is full of antioxidants and has many health benefits. They are sectional fruits. Why? Because where the fruit is in the chamber.
It has been called a “divine fruit” and has been found in the Garden of Eden as mentioned in Babylonian texts and in the Book of Exodus.
This edible fruit may look unassuming from the outside-but break it and you will find bright red seeds just wanting to be popped into your mouth.
Given below are the growing processes of Pomegranates – Shrub or Tree
These are the three (3) popular methods of growing Pomegranate plants:
• Growing Through Seeds
• Growing Through Cuttings
• Growing Through Ready Seedlings
Step 1. Start With The Right And Good Quality Pomegranate Seeds.
Pomegranate plants can be grown from seed. Though, the tree from seed may not be reliable at all. To ensure that your Pomegranate plants bear flowers and good fruits, get the right and good quality of seeds.
We all know that this fruit comes in many varieties. Before anything else, you should select the kind of seeds and consider your main purpose for growing this plant.
Know and understand the variety before you purchase, or else, using their seeds might not give you the expected results.
Plant The Pomegranate Seeds Into A Container Or Pot.
The recommended best time for planting and doing so is in the middle of winter. At this time, the plant could get enough time for germination, and then, the seedling can take an appropriate growth that can be planted outside later during the spring season.
Sow the chosen Pomegranate seeds and should be sown sparsely at one-fourth depth in pot soil. Place them where they get a warm atmosphere or sunlight.
The soil must always contain enough moisture for germination and watering at regular intervals so that the soil stays damp enough. But, not constantly wet as this may cause rotting.
Plant The Pomegranate Seeds Directly In The Garden Or Backyard.
Now plant your Pomegranate seeds into the soil, but before doing so, you need to ensure that the last frost has passed. Place your quality seeds in the soil. However, do not cover with additional soil.
Sow them in the garden when the soil is warm for about 65 Fahrenheit to 75 Fahrenheit. You need not want to shock Pomegranates by placing them in the ground and forcing them to go through the unexpected frost.
The soil around the Pomegranate plant should be loose so that its roots can freely grow and establish.
Step 2. Transplant/ Transfer The Seedlings From The Container Into The Garden Soil.
Carefully check your Pomegranate seedlings if they are now ready to transfer to their next stage. Has it turned into a mature plant or not?
A developed plant should have at least four leaves and be two inches tall. They are now ready to be moved outside during the spring season as this season is best for shifting and growing the seedlings of Pomegranates.
Cautiously dig enough space into the soil for the roots of your Pomegranate plant to get enough room to grow. Choose as well the right location for your plant to boost success.
When planting the seedlings, be sure to leave at least 1 to 2 feet of space apart in every seedling. However, if you are planting Pomegranate Trees space them at least 6 feet to 9 feet apart.
Dig up some of the seedlings and their soil and plant them slightly deeper in the garden bed soil, rather than in the pots. This is to encourage a robust root system. Once you are done planting, keep watering these plants from time to time.
Don’t worry if you flood the soil with water. Pomegranate plants can bear this situation up to a certain extent. When the planted seedlings can get enough water, moisture, and sunlight, they will naturally grow into mature trees in around 4 to 5 years.
Step 3. Care For Your Pomegranates.
Select the sunniest part of your garden when planting your Pomegranates because they need lots of strong light for at least 12 hours per day.
Thus, they need full sun. Whenever they are grown in a shaded place, try to give them a shade with the hottest portion of the day.
Without enough light, they will not be able to produce enough energy and their growth will be stunted.
When your Pomegranates have been planted, be sure that there is adequate water for the first couple of months. Generally, they are pretty tolerant of dry spells.
Most likely, when they mature and their roots are fully established in the soil, they could showcase their hardiness when heavy rains come.
As mentioned earlier, planted seedlings that can get enough water, moisture, and sunlight will naturally grow into mature trees in around 4 to 5 years.
For the first two months, make sure that the Pomegranate plants are getting the right amount of water to keep them hydrated without drowning.
If ever your Pomegranate plants have experienced an unusual dry spell, you may water them twice a day.
During watering make sure to water them at the base of the plant to do away with any fungal infections on the leaves.
Once your Pomegranate plants start to grow and develop strong roots, cultivate them around the base of the plant once a week, keeping the soil loose early on and well aerated.
After then the roots are fully established, you are now done and move to the next stage.
The best soils for your Pomegranate plants are heavy loams and well-drained soil. They can as well tolerate a wide array of soil conditions and could even grow on clay and sandy soils.
The right kind of soil is essential for the success of Pomegranates to grow and be well-nourished.
The optimal pH level of the soil needs to be within the appropriate range of 5.5 to 7.
Having the right and best soil is the foundation for growing healthy and compact for your Pomegranates.
Start providing nutrients to your Pomegranates as soon as the plant needs them. This is especially if the plant is not producing Pomegranate fruits.
Fertilizing them encourages bigger plants and more flowers. Add compost and manure to the soil or slow-release organic fertilizer. Before adding fertilizer into the soil, you need to test the pH level by taking a sample of it.
The Pomegranate plant thrives well in acidic soil. You can add fertilizers rich in nitrogen. Mulching is preferable for a continuous supply of nutrients to the plants.
Pruning of the Pomegranate plant is essential to give and maintain the desired shape of your tree and encourages flowering, fruiting, and increasing productivity.
Pruning them depends on how well they are growing. Examine your Pomegranate tree or shrubs and make sure you remove any suckers before they grow more.
Whenever they are not pruned properly, the shape of your Pomegranate tree will start to change. Prune out any crossing branches from 3 to 5 branches.
Pruning encourages the lateral buds to form which the vine starts to branch out. It lets the tree focus on the fruit and growth. Remove any branches that look diseased or dying before the infection spreads and causes severe damage to the tree.
Pests and Diseases Control
Pomegranate plants are known for being resistant to diseases and pests and are the best of all trees because they are not usually affected by many diseases and pests. Keeping your Pomegranate plant healthy is the best defense against diseases and pests.
There are possible common pests that like scale, mealy bugs, thrips, whiteflies, and Pomegranate butterflies that take advantage of shrubs and trees that have not been properly pruned. They feed on the diseased branches and contaminate your whole plant.
Meanwhile, when there is too much water, a disease may come up like soft rot and fruit spots that are caused by fungal infections.
Consider an organic fungicide and insecticide to use weekly to prevent either of these from taking over and destroying your Pomegranate plants that you have worked hard to grow.
Step 4. Harvest The Fruits Of Your Labor. Enjoy It!
The time has come that your Pomegranate fruits are now ready to pick up and harvest. There are signs to look for when it is ready to harvest such as:
First, examine the fruits of your Pomegranates and one thing to notice is the color has gotten darker and more profound. They do not look shiny. The color of the fruit is so deep and seems a bit flat and one-note.
Secondly, If you think that the color has changed, you need to take a closer look at the shape of the fruit. The ripe Pomegranates will be longer and look more like a hexagon with corners instead of fully round.
Third and finally, tap your finger against the Pomegranate and see if the sounds bounce back. It makes a tinny sound or is even slightly metallic.
Now, when you are ready to harvest, pick when the fruit is fully ripe and a deep red. Cut the fruit from the tree and never pull it off. Then, cut the fruit as close as possible to the branch, taking the stem with the fruit.
Your Pomegranates are ready for harvest once the fruit makes a metallic sound when you tap it with your finger.
Pomegranate fruits are generally ready for harvest about 6 to 7 months after blossoming and have reached that age of maturity. Business growers track timelines, know fruit-color indicators for their varieties. Then, they test the fruit for acidity and juice color.
Home gardeners may need trial and error over a few years, trying to get to know indicators of ripeness for your specific fruit. Don’t give up ever – you’ll get better each season.
Generally, the harvest season for Pomegranates is in September for early ripening varieties and continues through October for later ripening cultivars.
Growing Pomegranates Through Cuttings
Pomegranates can be grown through stem cuttings. Cut a branch that is at least 10 inches long and cover the cut end of the branch with rooting hormone to help it grow. Take the cuttings in February or March when the plant is dormant.
Pomegranates In General
Indeed, growing a Pomegranate plant is easy and commercially viable because there are excellent demands for this wonderful fruit.
They are loaded with important nutrients. Today, Pomegranate juice is being studied as it may help with cancer prevention, immune support, and fertility.
This heat-loving and drought-tolerant wonderful fruit is best suited to grow in tropical regions throughout Asia, Africa, and Europe. There is not much to say about how to grow this superfood plant because they are easy to care for.
Final Thoughts on How to Grow Pomegranates
Growing your own food has always been a feel-good thing for gardeners. Then when you grow something that you can not only eat and enjoy but it turns out to be beneficial to your health and makes you feel so much more fulfilled.
Better yet, it’s a good-looking plant of low maintenance and will look great in your garden.