Question: Will I need a second tree for good pollination?

Answer: Some fruit crops are sterile to their own pollen. Others produce their pollen (male) flowers at times different from the female flowers. In both cases you’ll need a second variety that blooms at the same time. Crops that will pollinate themselves, in other words, that won’t require a second variety, include blackberries, cherries, citrus, figs, grapes (not including all muscadines), nectarines, peaches, persimmons and strawberries. Apricots, pears, pecans, plums and walnuts are partially self-fruitful, which means that a second variety blooming at the same time would help ensure good fruit set. You will definitely want a second variety for apples and blueberries. Remember, too, that your neighbors will generally have the more common fruit crops, so you may not have to plant the second variety in your own garden. Bees will carry fruit tree pollen for a considerable distance, and pecan pollen can blow for similar distances. Above all, if you’re planting a second tree to improve pollination, be certain that it’s a different variety. Too many folks plant two of the very same favorite fruit and accomplish nothing toward improving the pollination.

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