How to Care for a Utah Pomegranate Tree

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The Utah Sweet pomegranate tree can grow 30 feet tall and has pink-orange flowers that are self-pollinating. This hardy tree with its apple-sized fruit is suited for USDA zones 6 through 10. The fruit of the Utah Sweet pomegranate tree has pink skin and pulp, with seeds that are softer than other pomegranate cultivars. The pomegranate fruit develops on the tips of new growth, so understanding how to prune your Utah Sweet pomegranate tree correctly will help it produce an abundant harvest.

Things You'll Need

  • 8-8-8 fertilizer
  • Organic mulch, such as rotted manure
  • Pruning shears
  • Water newly planted Utah Sweet pomegranate trees every 2 to 4 weeks until you observe new growth. Pomegranate trees need 60 inches of rain per year, so water established pomegranate trees as needed to supplement natural rainfall.

  • Apply 2 lbs. of an 8-8-8 fertilizer to young trees every November and March. After the pomegranate tree is 2 years old, apply 4.5 lbs. of 8-8-8 fertilizer every November and March. Once the tree is mature and fully grown, increase the amount of fertilizer to 6.5 lbs. Apply the fertilizer to the ground surrounding the tree, following the manufacturer's directions.

  • Mulch the ground around the base of the Utah Sweet with a yearly application of rotted manure or other organic compost.

  • Prune the pomegranate tree during the winter that it reaches 2 feet tall. Select an upright branch as a leader, and cut back all other limbs to the ground.

  • Train the Utah Sweet once it has developed numerous horizontal branches off the main leader. In the winter, select five evenly distributed shoots that grow horizontally from the trunk, and remove all other shoots by cutting them back to where they join the leader. Keep the bottom 8 to 10 inches of the leader clear of branches and suckers, as this will help the leader grow into a strong trunk.

  • Cut back the pomegranate tree's branches every winter until it is 3 years old. Cut off the end of each branch, leaving three quarters of the branch's original length. Use pruning shears to cut each branch at a node, or bump, on the branch. This will help the Utah Sweet develop new tip growth in the spring for abundant fruit production. Remove any suckers that are growing from the crown, the bottom 12 inches of the trunk or at ground level by pinching them off with your fingers or cutting them off with pruning shears.

  • Stop pruning the branches of the Utah Sweet pomegranate tree after its 3rd year. Prune only to remove dead branches. Continue to remove suckers that grow on the crown, the bottom 12 inches of the trunk or at ground level.

  • Harvest the pomegranates when they have developed their mature pink color and sound metallic when tapped.

References

  • Photo Credit pomegranate image by Ergün Ã--zsoy from Fotolia.com
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