Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Daniel's Latest Response In the Mystery Fruit Tree Debate

The Mysterious Fruit Tree in Daniel's side yard, November 2010.
In spite of the fact that my friend Daniel runs the wildly successful website What's That Bug?, he seems to be having a bit of trouble posting comments to this blog.  Because I'm so determined to get to solve The Mystery of the Unknown Fruit Tree, I've taken it upon myself to post Daniel's latest response to keep the investigation going.

Hi Bharati, It is very exciting to try to research the identity of my lovely and toothsome mystery fruit tree.  I cannot know for certain that this tree is a volunteer.  If my memory serves me correctly, there may be a cement cylinder around it which would indicate it is a cultivar.    
It is my theory that this tree might be a volunteer hybrid between a peach and an almond.  There are many wild almond trees in Mt. Washington, though I have tried the fruit from them and they are not like my tree.  The tree was a good size when I moved into this house in 2001.
Bharati also sent a fascinating link to an article by Leonard Coates of Morganhill, California from the Journal of Heredity Vol. 12.  In it, Coates describes the fruit from a  "Peach-Almond" hybrid and includes photographs of the fruit, which shrivels up and splits when it ripens.  I have consulted with Daniel and he reports that the fruit from his tree does not do this.  As a result, we are forced to conclude that although Daniel's mystery tree may in fact be a cross between a peach and a wild almond tree, it is not the "Peach-Almond" hybrid first identified in the nurseries of W. B West of Stockton, California sometime in the early 1850's.    

The trail goes cold once more, but the search continues...