How to Grow Pomegranates from Seed
Growing pomegranates from seed is fun and very easy to do.
Punica granatum is the botanical name for the pomegranate tree/bush.
They are officially trees but they constantly thrown up suckers from the base giving them a bushy look. They can also be trained to grow as hedging where they will form an impenetrable barrier to keep unwanted visitors out, thanks to their spines.
The pomegrate makes the prettiest of trees, so worth growing even if you hate pomegranates, or live in an area where the fruit won’t form thanks to frosts.
The pomegranate tree is deciduous in all but the warmest climates (i.e. equatorial) and in early spring throw out the most beautiful, almost autumnal colours of yellow, red, orange and pale green. In autumn, the leaves of the pomegranate change again and even during their growing season they retain some colour other than green.
The pomegranate flowers are a glorious deep orangey/red and are followed by the fruit we know as the pomegranate.
How to grow pomegranates from seed
The seeds from inside the pomegranate can be cleansed of their pulp, dried, and then planted to their depth in a compost-filled pot. This pot must be kept moist, preferably placed inside a sealed plastic bag.
Very quickly, the pomegranate seeds should germinate. When the seedling are big enough to handle, transfer to individual pots, and keep in a light position. A sunny windowsill is ideal, or a sunny terrace if you live in a subtropical area. Water daily but do not allow the pots to sit on water.
By the end of the year the pomegranate seedlings should be big enough to transfer to large pots, to harden off before planting out.
Pomegranate trees can withstand temperatures down to minus 10 Celsius. If your area suffers lower temperatures, keep them indoors in pots during the winter.
I have two year old plants that are now in flower despite being told they would not flower for at least 5 years!
The Pomegranate Tree
Pomegranate tree growing conditions
Pomegranate trees like to grow in a well-drained position in full sun. After their first year or two when like all newly planted trees, they will not have much water requirements. Very few pests attack the pomegranate tree, but deer have been know to chew their leaves if you live in an area where deer wander free.
Pomegranate trees can grow to 20' - 30' high, although this is rare unless they are pruned to grow upright. If you cut the growing tip of the pomegranate when it is about 2' high, it will branch outwards and you will end up with a bush about 10'-12' feet high which is a much more manageable size.
The pomegranate benefits from annual pruning to remove dead and otherwise decayed branches. This encourages new and vigorous growth.
Hisptory of the Pomegranate
Pomegranate fruit have been mention in historical times but their most famous episode from biblical times came from when the Devil tempted Adam and Eve to taste the apple from the Garden of Eden.Many people now believe it was in fact, a pomegranate and not an apple.
In Greek mythology, Persephone was believed to have been condemned to spend half of eternity in Hades because she ate half of a pomegranate.
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