Vorguen wrote:I have been very curious about how this works... is there any way you can help me understand?
I know how Hybridization works, and often the seeds are sterile, but I often wonder how you get a seed of a different fruit from another fruit etc...
my wife planted an orange tree ages ago, and everyone told her the oranges weren't going to be the same thing and that they would be bitter..
the tree grew to produce some of the sweetest oranges ever
Tree seed of temperate zone trees, if freshly planted
have a fair to good germination rate. *If* you paint inside the lines woody plants demand. Mike Dirr in: Manual of Woody Landscape Plants
has an elegant description of the inhibitors that keep tree seed germinating only at optimal times. Often this means a winters nap in the cold and thaw cycle of nature has to happen. Not a freezer or dried.
Cold stratification can be as elegant as in a cold frame in a germinating pan, or as low-tech as stuck inna pot of dirt and bermed into the garden with a plank on top till spring rolls back around.
Temperate zone tree seed is not a tomato seed that will spring to attention and grow as soon as heat, warmth, and moisture are supplied.
A minor number of Japan maple cultivar seed ARE sterile. Bloodgood (JM) seed is only sterile if you dry them... Even rugged crab apple seed will only tolerate a few months drying before seed is no longer viable.
*If* you demand fruit quality equal to, or better than the parent; then your odds may be as poor as 1 in 100 grown. If your making apple sauce, fruit leather, or cider, then just about any apple tree that makes fruit, will feed the posse at home. A few will seem exceptional to you and may become a tree you want to graft other examples of.
John Chapman made his living collecting pomace (the goo left over from cider) and planting out as a straight run every seedling it produced.
The funkiest feral pear will make a fruit, and if kept pruned can be hand collected. it may well be too grainy to be an exceptional dessert pear. it'll still cook out for pear butter fine.
I've had a southern arborist sneer at a stubby northern hearty pecan, he still jammed my pralines into his pie-hole fast enough with those 'inferior' nuts in it.
This is more true of apple, prunus, and pear, but if I can keep a crab apple blooming and setting fruit at less than two feet tall, just how tall a standard tree on its own feet has to become is a lot less clear than some folks who sell trees on dwarfing rootstock might have you beleive.
As smarty-pants as this post sounds. An' I'll grant it does. I've grafted apple and not much else. I've listened to arborists who claim prunus and nut trees can be grafted. maybe their right, I dunno.
If there is a problem with growing your own fruit or nut trees out from seed it has more to do with the delay between generations. It is the only excuse I can find to justify using dwarf rootstocks, they come into production a few years faster than standard trees do. They die of old age sooner too.