Sara Drake: Time for the 4-H plant sale
Rowan County 4-H is now taking orders for the annual Spring Plant Sale. Fruit includes strawberries – Allstar; blueberries – Brightwell, Climax and Premier; blackberries – Arapaho and Triple Crown; raspberries – Dorman Red; muscadines – Nesbitt and Triumph; and figs – Brown Turkey and Celeste.
Blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, muscadines and figs are in one-gallon containers and are well adapted to the Piedmont growing conditions. The cost for each plant is $10 each or $9 if five or more of the same variety are ordered.
Allstar strawberries produce large, sweet fruit. The plants ripen mid-season. The cost for strawberry plants is 25 for $10, 50 for $15, and 100 for $20. Supplies are limited.
When planting blueberries, it is recommended to plant at least two varieties to ensure cross-pollination. Brightwell has large fruit and ripens mid-season over a long period. The plants are very productive. Climax ripens early over a short period and produces medium-size berries with a sweet flavor. Premier is very productive, ripens early to mid-season, and produces large fruit.
Both blackberry plants are a thornless variety. Arapaho produces medium fruit with good flavor and ripens over a four-week period. Triple Crown produces a large, sweet fruit and ripens later than most varieties.
Dorman Red raspberries ripen mid- to late summer and produce medium to large berries with excellent flavor. The plants are heat, drought and disease resistant.
Nesbitt muscadines produce a large fruit with very good quality that is black in color. It ripens over a four- to five-week period beginning in early September. Triumph produces a large fruit that is greenish-bronze in color. It ripens early to mid-season.
The Brown Turkey fig bears twice a year (early and late summer) with the flesh of the fruit turning from various shades of amber to pink. The skin is copper-brown. The plant is very hardy. The Celeste fig produces fruit that is small to medium in size with a light brown to violet skin and a whitish-pink color flesh. It contains very few seeds and ripens early summer.
If you would like to help support the Rowan County 4-H program, please call the Extension Office at 704-216-8970 to place your order today. Orders must be received by Feb. 26.
Sara Drake is an Extension agent, 4-H Youth Development.
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