Pomegranate Planting Guide
When picking a location for your tree, try to find a well-drained area with sandy loam soil. This is the best for pomegranates, but as long as there is good drainage your tree should thrive. Place your tree in full sun for the best growth and production rate. Avoid frost pockets- trees may be damaged by unseasonable frosts. Pomegranates prefer alkaline soil (pH 6.5 to 7.0 or higher). If you have questions about your soil, take a sample down to the Cooperative Extension Agent in your county.
Now dig a hole about three times the size of your pot and the same depth as the root ball. Set the soil you have dug out aside and mix it 50/50 with aged mushroom compost, aged manure, or rotten pine bark. Remove the plant from it pot and gently loosen the root ball. Place the plant in the planting hole and replace the soil with the mix 50/50 and gently pack down the dirt. To avoid planting to deep make sure the plant is at a position with the top most roots at the soil line. Next we need to thoroughly water the tree to settle the roots and eliminate air pockets. DO NOT PUT FERTILIZER IN THE PLANTING HOLE! Only apply fertilizer at the correct time of year.
If desired, construct a water basin at the base of the tree about 36 inches in diameter. Mulch in the spring & summer time should be about 4-6 inches deep. Keep mulch a few inches away from the trunk of the tree.
Chemical or organic, whatever you may choose make sure that it contains iron, zinc, manganese, magnesium, molybdenum, copper and boron. These elements are crucial to the plants growth. Application rates may vary. See chart below:
10-10-10 or 10-0-10 with minerals
1 cup per each year of tree’s life
**Max out at 9 cups for mature tree
Espoma Citrus Tone (Organic)
6 cups for 1 year old
10 cups for 2 year old (4-6ft)
18 cups for 7-9ft tree
24 cups for tree over 9ft
The fertilizer should be spread under the entire canopy, avoiding the 5 inches closest to the trunk. For Zones 8a-10, fertilize 3 times each year; in late February, late May, and late July. NEVER FERTILIZE AFTER AUGUST! This can promote growth to late in the year and damage the tree if it freezes.
The first year is a critical time for your new pomegranate. It has not had time to establish itself yet and therefore is not as strong as an older tree. To prevent the tree from dying, it must be watered twice a week on light soil and once a week on clay soil. Be sure to soak the entire root system deeply, this will take about 40-50 minutes. For best growth and production, pomegranates should receive at least one inch of water a week. During dry spells, water is mandatory. If not properly watered during dry spells, fruit may drop prematurely.
Pruning & Care
Pomegranates tend to be bushy and sucker from the root. Fruit wood is formed on older wood so it is wise to choose 4 to 6 well spaced out suckers to train into trunks and remove any new suckers as the emerge during the summer. Pruning your tree should provide light into the canopy. Pruning should take place in the early spring rather than winter to help remove freeze damaged and dead wood. If the trunks are badly damaged due to the freeze, remove and replace with newly emerging suckers in the summer.
Pests & Diseases
Pomegranates have very few diseases. Mites can be controlled with the use of sulfur in June, while scale insects can be controlled with dormant oil during winter when leaves are not present. A neutral liquid copper spray controls leaf spots.