Pomegranates form small ornamental trees or shrubs 6-10 feet tall with a spread of 3-5 feet. They are deciduous in our area and should be planted in a sunny exposure with shelter from a cold north wind. The plant is self-fertile.
Pomegranates offer color and diversity to any landscape: narrow leaves open bronze before turning bright green, and summer flowers are a showy orange-red. Leathery, globular 4-inch fruits with burnished red skin and pulp follow in the fall, usually beginning two-to-three years after planting.
Grown in an open area, pomegranates are generally trouble-free. Water deeply on a regular basis and use a general-purpose, slow release fertilizer in early spring and again 6-8 weeks later to encourage fruiting in the established plant.
Pruning should be done in late winter to encourage new growth on which the plant blooms each year. Select three or four main branches to form a framework and remove any crowded, crossing or diseased branches; also remove suckers as needed.
The best known fruiting pomegranate, “Wonderful”, is widely available and does well in East Texas. Its fall foliage is brilliant yellow and its fruits — crimson with good flavor –can be eater fresh or processed. The seeds provide a colorful and tasty garnish to any salad.
Don Gustafson, former Smith County Master Gardener
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service