Apricots can be grown in most of the western world including much of Utah. Like peaches, plums, and cherries, apricots have a large, hard pit or ‘stone’ in the fruit and are considered ‘stone fruits’. They are beautiful in flower and are among the most ornamental of the tree fruits. Apricots are a versatile fruit that can be dried, made into fruit leather, frozen, canned/bottled, made into jam/jelly, or eaten fresh.
Some common winter-hardy, later blooming cultivars include ‘Chinese’ (‘Mormon’), ‘Moorpark’, ‘Goldrich’, ‘Tilton’ and ‘Harglow’. Of these, ‘Goldrich’ and 'Harglow’ are the latest blooming. Even though these cultivars are later blooming, they are still prone to spring freeze damage. All are good for eating fresh and general processing.
The cultivar ‘Royal Blenheim’ is among the most popular apricots but is not recommended for Utah because it is not winter hardy and blooms very early.
Apricots grow in most Utah soils as long as the soil has sufficient drainage. However, soil testing can help determine the appropriate amendments to add to a site before planting. Apply any deficient nutrients as indicated from soil tests and till into the soil. Visit the USU Analytical Laboratory for more information on soil testing: www.usual.usu.edu.
Apricots, like peaches and plums, have little tolerance of wet and heavy soils and will easily get root-rotting diseases in such conditions, especially when irrigation is not carefully managed. Apricots are very prone to iron chlorosis in the alkaline soils of Utah. Overwatering will significantly increase the risk of chlorosis and general tree decline as a result. Deep, infrequent irrigation and use of EDDHA chelated iron may help considerably.
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