Above: Pomegranate (Punica granatum) ripening in Bonnefont Garden in September.
The standard form of the pomegranate, which bears a yellowish-red fruit about the size of a Valencia orange, has been grown at the Museum for many years. The tender tree must be dug up, overwintered, and replanted each spring if it is to be grown in the ground in our climate. Since it is a small tree, this is not all that difficult to do. As in the past, pomegranates are brought in from the garden in October, once they have shed their leaves. They are then put into a dark, unheated storage space here at the Museum, allowed to go dormant, and brought out again once the danger of frost is past in May. However, we have found that the plants will flower and fruit much sooner and more plentifully if they are taken out in March, and are brought on in a small greenhouse space available to us, which is kept at 50 degrees throughout the winter and early spring.