Sugar Cane Jujube

Sugar Cane Jujube
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Ornamental Flowering Tree with Great Tasting FruitSugar Cane Jujube (sometimes known as a Chinese date) is an introduction from the USDA Research Station in Chico, California as the one with the best for fresh eating.  It is a smaller tree that is densely branched and gets to about 12-15’ tall.  It can be grown as a lower branched tree to help you harvest the fruit if you like.  They do make a barrier plant as they have thorns.  Jujube trees are Chinese in origin where the fruit was used in Chinese medicine. The small yellow flowers are typical in June and have the unusual fragrance of grape soda pop.  The leaves are dark green and shiny and look like the leaves you might find on your pear tree.   Sugar Cane Jujube makes a ton of fruit even on a young tree.  They start out green and are edible at that stage eaten fresh are very crispy and super sweet with an interesting syrupy flavor.  As the fruits continue to ripen, they turn a beautiful mahogany color and can be eaten at that stage too. They continue to ripen as you leave them on the tree and will darken and sweeten even more.  They can be picked as they turn brown and will continue to ripen after being picked, and will wrinkle and eventually dry.  Sugar Cane fruit can be used as you would raisins or dates in baked good, preserves or canning.  The beauty of this Jujube is that the fruit do not all ripen at the same time, but over a period so you have a chance to use them all if you can. Sugar Cane Jujube is a classic addition to your edible landscape.  You can use it as a specimen, or the perfect backdrop to your shrub or perennial border or maybe along the north side of your vegetable garden.   Easy to grow in those hot dry areas and the plants are insect and disease free.  Once Sugar Cane Jujube is established, they are very drought tolerant.  They will produce fruit when planted alone as a specimen, or are very productive in groups too. This Jujube is hardy in zones 6-10.  The plants themselves are hardy on zone 5 but in some fall seasons if there is an early cold snap, the fruits may not fully ripen late into fall when they are harvested.Sugar Cane Jujube is not very well known, but it’s certainly a plant you need to include to your edible landscape.  Sugar Cane is a great selection for fresh eating, or for allowing them to ripen and shrivel to use as you wish.  * A Chinese date great for fresh eating * Simple to grow, and best in full sun * Wildly productive even as young plants * Pest free, and drought tolerant once established.

Li Jujube

Li Jujube
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Flowers the Fragrance of Grape Soda!This is an interesting plant from China in which the fruit was used in Chinese medicine.  It’s a smaller tree that is densely branched and gets to about 15’ or so.  Flowers are small and yellow, typically in June.  The flowers have the interesting fragrance of grape soda.  The leaves are dark green and glossy and resemble those of a pear tree. Li Jujube produces loads of candy like fruits at a very early age.  The fruits (drupe) resemble a small egg in size and are green as they begin to mature in the fall.  If eaten fresh and green they will be very crunchy and sweet like an apple with a bit of a syrupy overtone.  As the fruits begin to ripen more, they turn a mahogany color and get sweeter as they age.  They can be picked at this stage and allowed to wrinkle and dry after picking and should to be used like you would dates or raisins. They are super sweet eaten fresh, preserved or dried.  The wonderful thing about the fruit is they do not ripen all at the same time and can be harvested over the period of a few weeks. They dependently produce great crops of fruit year after year.  A small ornamental tree, they are great for your edible landscape along the back of your garden or lot.  These trees love hot dry areas in full sun.  Once established, they are very drought tolerant as well as insect and disease free. Li Jujube is self-fruitful and does not need another variety to be productive (and productive they are!).  They can also be trained as low branched barrier plants as they do contain thorns. They make a beautiful stand-alone single specimen tree which will produce fruit dependably as they do not need a partner to make fruit.   Li Jujubes are hardy in zones 6-10, but reportedly hardy in zone 5 when the fall season is long and slow to allow the fruits to ripen late into the season. It’s time to add a Chinese Date to your edible landscape, and Li is the perfect starter plant for you.* An unusual fruit that is wildly productive * Simple to grow, and best in full sun * No disease or insect problems * Drought tolerant once established* Beautiful specimen tree.