Growing Jujube Trees and How to Use the Fruit

How to Grow Jujube Tree

Jujube fruit (Ziziphus jujuba Mill.)

Known as Chinese date, is native to China and has been grown and enjoyed for over 4,000 years. The tree is deciduous and is grown as an ornamental fruiting tree that can reach 30–40 feet tall (grown on a standard root stock), and grows well in the United States. Mature trees can produce between 40–100 pounds of fruit per season. Some varieties have spines on their branches and should be handled with care when planting.

Choosing a Variety of Jujube Tree

Li Jujube – A popular cultivar, produces large, round fruit that can weigh up to 3 oz. Good picked at the yellow-green stage and eaten fresh.

Lang Jujube – Another very popular variety that produces large pear-shaped fruit.  For this variety it is best to eat dried fruit.

Honey Jar Jujube – The fruit is round to elongated and small to medium sized. Excellent for fresh eating, this jujube is very sweet and crisp, like sugar cane. Tree grows to 20 feet.

Jujube Shanxi Li Tree – the most popular fresh eating variety in China. Medium to large fruit that has a sweet apple flavor. Very productive tree.

Jujube Tree Origins and Adaptability

Originating from China, the Jujube tree found its way across continents, thriving even in regions with hot summers. Adaptable and resilient, it flourishes in the United States, offering up to 100 pounds of fruit per season in certain varieties.

Ideal Conditions for Jujube Growth

  • Soil Adaptability: Tolerant of different soil types, prefers well-draining soils for optimal growth.
  • Watering Needs: Once established, drought-tolerant; regular watering enhances fruit development.
  • Fertilization: Light fertilization benefits growth; over-fertilization is unnecessary.
  • Sunlight Requirements: Flourishes in hot summers, thrives in full sun for vigorous fruiting.

Essential Care and Maintenance

  • Root Sprouts: Regular removal of root sprouts (suckers) is essential for tree health.
  • Pruning Regimen: Primary pruning during dormancy promotes overall tree vigor.

Harvesting Techniques and Stages

  • Maturation Phases: Develops through three stages:
    • White Mature: Nearly full-sized fruit with greenish-white skin.
    • Crisp Mature: Full-sized fruit with partially reddish-brown skin; sweet and crisp.
    • Fully Mature: Skin turns fully red and wrinkled; very sweet but drier.

Exploring the Benefits of Jujube Fruit

  • Fresh Consumption: Use in recipes, salads, or as a snack, offering a unique apple-like flavor.
  • Dried Jujubes: Lang variety is suitable for drying into 'red dates,' often used in traditional medicine.
  • Jujube's Health Benefits: Rich in antioxidants, combatting free radicals and aiding sleep improvement.

Cultivating Jujubes for Health and Wellness

  • Traditional Medicine: Revered in traditional medicine, jujubes are used for their healthful properties.
  • Sleep Improvement: Consuming jujubes is believed to aid in improving sleep quality and relaxation.

Jujubes are not just fruits but embodiments of history, resilience, and healthful living. Cultivating these trees not only offers a delectable fruit but also provides a connection to ancient traditions and potential wellness benefits. Dive into the world of jujubes, where history meets health in every bite!

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    32 comments

    Bob, you can try and plant the seeds, but it will most likely take years for the tree to develop fruit.

    Suzanne

    I have been getting Seedless Jujube Dates for years and on my last order they all had full seeds. Can these seeds be grown and If so, how?

    Bob D

    It seems jujube trees grow up to 20+ feet, is it easy to control the height by pruning?
    Does it need two Jujube trees to cross pollinate? Thanks for your help.

    Kathy

    Evita, no multi-grafted jujube trees are available from our grower.

    Suzanne

    Will you be offering multiple grafted jujube trees in the near future?

    Evita

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