The USDA Hardiness Zone 7 is divided into two sub-zones: 7a (0°F to 5°F) and 7b (5°F to 10°F). As you can see, average winter temperatures drop as low as 0°F in zone 7a and 5°F in zone 7b.
Cold-hardy varieties of apple, pear, plum, peach, apricot, and cherry trees can be grown in these USDA Zone 7. Some figs, mulberries, persimmons, and pomegranates also do well in this zone if well cared for.
Best Fruit Trees to Grow in Zone 7
Here are the recommended fruit trees for zone 7, including self-pollinating and dwarf selections. I’ve included growing tips and care requirements to make it easier for you to choose.
1. Rainier Sweet Cherry (Prunus avium ‘Rainier’)
The Rainier Sweet Cherry is one of our favorite cherry varieties for USDA zones 5 through 8. We like it for its low acidity and high brix content, making it a lot sweeter than dark cherry varieties.
Should you plant it, choose a spot that receives full sun with ample space as the mature size grows as tall as 20 to 30 feet.
The Rainier is versatile in terms of soil preference, growing well in clay, loam, or sand soils. Test for soil pH before planting as it prefers slightly acidic, alkaline, or neutral pH to flourish as long as it’s moist but well-drained.
The tree typically takes 4 to 7 years to bear its delectable fruit. Once mature, it blossoms with sweetly scented white flowers in early spring. These are great if you’re growing the fruit tree as part of an edible landscape. Fruits will be ready for harvesting in early summer.
Other cherry varieties that thrive in Zone 7 include:
- Bing cherry
- Stella, North Star
2. Cortland Apple (Malus domestica ‘Cortland’)
The Cortland Apple is a heirloom apple variety recognized for its sweet vinous flavor. Its fruit is encapsulated in a striking crimson-red skin with white flesh inside.
Originating from the parentage of the McIntosh apple, the Cortland has similar care conditions – preferring full sun and loamy soils with a pH range of 6.0 to 7.0.
With a hardiness spanning zones 3 to 8, we recommend the Cortland Apple for its great resilience across diverse climates.
It takes 2-4 years from planting to bearing fruit for the Cortland. Mature trees are about 12-16 ft., making them fit well in both orchards and backyard gardens.
While the Cortland Apple is partially self-fertile, it yields much better fruit when planted next to another apple tree. Its midseason bloom of pristine white flowers adds to the beauty of landscapes and gardens while promising a bountiful harvest come September.
Other apple varieties that flourish in USDA Zone 7 include Fuji, Granny Smith, Empire Red Delicious, Honeycrisp, McIntosh, and Jonathan.
3. Moorpark Apricot (Prunus armeniaca ‘Moorpark’)
The Moorpark Apricot is another great fruit tree to grow in Zones 7a and 7b. I personally love it for its succulent and sweet fruits. You can choose to go with the dwarf or standard sizes, both ripening for harvest from early July to early August.
For growers with limited space, we often recommend the dwarf variety of the Moorpark apricot. You can expect the standard cultivar to reach a height of 10′ – 15′ and a spread of 8′ – 12′.
The fruits of the Moorpark Apricot range from 5-7 cm in diameter, so you’re sure you’ll get large apricots with small central stones that don’t adhere to the flesh.
The tree blossoms late, presenting delicate flowers in white to pink hues. These flowers are a delight, which is why I prefer planting this apricot in edible landscapes that come to life in the spring.
The Moorpark apricot can thrive in climate zones from 5 to 9. A good time to plant is from Fall to Spring. The tree prefers acidic to neutral soil and requires a spacing of 8′ to 20′, contingent on the design of your garden.
Alternative apricot varieties that thrive in Zone 7 include:
- Sungold apricots
Where to buy: The Moorpark apricot is available at NatureHills.
4. Contender Peach (Prunus persica ‘Contender’)
The Contender Peach was developed in Raleigh, NC to be a cold-hardy, resilient fruit tree. It was introduced to the world in 1988 and has since been widely adopted across various climate zones in the United States.
Not many peach varieties are very cold-hardy, but the Contender peach is unique as it thrives well in Zones 4 through 8. It can tolerate frost exceptionally well, making it an ideal choice for northern regions that often face chilly conditions.
With a chill requirement of 1000 hours, this peach tree will require about 42 days of chill temperatures between 32°F (0°C) and 45°F (7.2°C) to break dormancy and yield fruit abundantly.
Contender peach blooms in the spring with spectacular pink blossoms that give way to medium-sized freestone peaches with a sweet and juicy profile. The fruits are ready for harvest from mid to late August.
The Contender Peach is self-pollinating, but having a pollinator nearby can significantly increase its yield, leading to an even more abundant harvest.
Plant the Contender Peach in a spot with well-drained soil and full sun exposure for optimal growth. It prefers loamy soil with a pH range of 6.0-8.0.
Other peach varieties for USDA zone 7 include: Contender, Red Haven, Reliance, and Saturn.
5. Ozark Plum (Prunus salicina ‘Ozark Premier’)
The Ozark Plum, or the Japanese plum, is a self-pollinating fruit tree hardy to Zone 7 and preferred by commercial orchardists for its extra-large fruits. It is well-suited for the Northeast and Midwest regions.
The Japanese plum can be grown as a single tree or alongside another plum variety for a more bountiful yield.
This tree demands specific conditions for optimal growth. It thrives best in full sun, preferring loamy, well-drained soils that range from mildly acidic to mildly alkaline.
Keep in mind it has a requirement of 800 chill hours, hence it is well adapted to regions with cooler winters that are necessary for breaking bud and yielding profitably.
During spring, the Ozark Plum displays fragrant white blossoms that add aesthetic appeal to landscapes and promise a generous harvest from mid to late summer.
In terms of height and width, the standard Ozark Plum reaches an impressive 20 ft. both in height and width, so you want to plant it where there’s ample space.
However, if your garden is small, a more compact dwarf cultivar is available, standing at 8-10 ft. in height and width.
6. Parker Pear (Pyrus communis ‘Parker’)
Introduced by the University of Minnesota in 1934, the Parker Pear is highly recommended for its adaptability, thriving in USDA zones 4 to 8 as it is hardy down to a chilling -25°F.
When grown in the correct conditions, the fruit tree reaches a height of 15 to 20 feet with a width of about 15 feet. A tree of this size is suitable for both orchards and spacious gardens.
You can also grow the Parker Pear in your yard about 20 feet away from structures, as its roots spread as far as its canopy.
The Parker pear thrives best in full sunlight and prefers moist conditions. However, it does not like sitting in standing water. You can plant it in various soil types and pH levels without problems.
In fact, we’ve consistently noted chlorosis in Parker pears growing in wet areas, so you want to avoid overwatering your tree.
Since it has a slow growth rate, it takes 2-3 years to bear flowers and fruit. Once mature, the tree blooms mid-spring with pristine white flowers and is a great pollinator. However, the Parker Pear is not self-fertile. It requires another European Pear variety in close proximity for effective cross-pollination.
Alternative pear varieties for zone 7 include:
- Summercrisp Pear
7. Red Gold Nectarine (Prunus persica var. nucipersica ‘Red Gold’)
The Red Gold Nectarine produces large, freestone fruits with a firm flesh that strikes a perfect balance between sweet and tangy, with an accompanying juiciness that makes them a summer favorite.
Mature trees reach a height and width of 12-14′ when growing in full sun. Red Gold nectarines are a self-fertile variety, so we choose them for small gardens and orchards.
During spring, the tree adorns itself with an abundance of bright pink flowers, followed by a bountiful yield later in the year.
Regular pruning is recommended to facilitate air circulation. The best time to prune is from late winter to early spring, ensuring the tree is in prime condition for the growing season. Additionally, thinning the fruit can help reduce stress on the tree and promote larger, healthier nectarines.
The Red Gold is hardy to zones 5 to 9 but requires full sun during the growing season. You can plant it in acidic to neutral, well-drained soil. If these conditions are met, it will bear fruit within the first year. Fruit ripens from August through fall, offering a prolonged period of delicious produce.
The recommended spacing is 8′ to 20′ apart.
Other nectarine varieties for zone 7 include:
- Carolina Red
8. Fuyu Persimmon
The Fuyu Persimmon yields medium-sized fruits about five years post-planting. It reaches 10 to 15 feet tall at maturity, and being a self-fertile fruit tree, you need just one tree if you have a small backyard.
Plant the Fuyu Persimmon in a well-drained area with sandy loam soil for optimal growth. Ensure it receives at least 6 hours of direct sunlight daily for optimal growth and healthy yields.
Fuyu’s blooms are a subtle yellow-green and can add color to USDA zones 7-10 gardens and landscapes that it is hardy to in the blooming season.
The tree has non-invasive roots, which is great for those who want to plant it in small backyards where trees can easily interfere with nearby structures.
The Fuyu Persimmon’s harvest time begins in September and extends through October. Fruits continue to ripen through December, offering a prolonged harvest period.
With a chill hour requirement of 100 to 200 hours, this tree is well-suited for regions with milder winters.
9. Russian Pomegranate
We like the Russian Pomegranate for its sweet and juicy fruits that carry a hint of tartness. This variety produces large red fruits adorned with vibrant reddish arils, making them both a visual and culinary treat.
It thrives in full sun and prefers well-drained soil. We recommend a spacing of 10 feet owing to its height and spread at maturity.
In the spring, the Russian Pomegranate blossoms with bright orange flowers that develop into fruits ready for harvesting from late September to early October.
This fruit tree is a relatively quick bearer, producing fruits within 2 to 3 years of planting if grown in optimum conditions. At maturity, a single tree can yield 90 to 100 pounds of fruit annually.
With a chill hour requirement of 100 to 200 hours, the Russian Pomegranate tree is well-suited for regions with milder winters and is cold hardy from zones 6 to 10.
- Pollination: Self-fertile
- Size: 10 to 20 feet and 8 to 15 feet wide.
- Where to buy: Fast-Growing-Trees and NatureHills
10. Brown Turkey Fig (Ficus carica ‘Brown Turkey’)
The Brown Turkey Fig is a unique and resilient fig cultivar suited for zones 5-7. It boasts a higher cold hardiness than many other fig varieties. However, if you live in regions with particularly frigid winters, where temperatures drop below 10°F, consider protecting your fig tree to ensure its survival.
For example, plant it near walls for added heat during cold winters. Remember, walls retain and radiate heat slowly over time.
Brown Turkey tree reaches 10 to 30 feet at maturity, so you want to give it ample space in your orchard or backyard.
Growing requirements: plant it in a spot with rich, moist, well-drained soil where it will receive full sun. In the spring, this fig tree produces small, green flowers that are almost invisible.
The tree is self-fertile, so you can plant a single tree and still get fruit.
The Brown Turkey Fig takes 3 to 5 years to start bearing fruit. You can expect two harvest seasons – one from late spring to early summer and another from late summer to early fall.
11. Sunglo Nectarine (Prunus persica ‘Sunglo’)
There are very many nectarine varieties, but the Sunglo Nectarine is common due to its ease of care and bountiful yields. Suited for zones 5-8, this tree is adaptable to a range of climates, making it a great choice for gardens and orchards across different regions.
Sunglo reaches a height of 15-20 feet, spreads 8-15 feet wide, and grows moderately when planted in full sun and well-drained soil.
The Sunglo produces 3-inch high-quality fruits packed with flavor.
The tree is self-pollinating, so you can expect a consistent yield without another nectarine growing nearby for cross-pollination.
Sunglo Nectarines start bearing fruits 2-3 years after planting. The tree’s showy pink blooms appear on mature trees from mid-March to Early April, adding aesthetic appeal to landscapes and orchards.
Being an early ripening variety, the fruits are ready for harvest in August. A single Sunglo Nectarine tree can yield at least 50 lbs of fruit in a season.
The recommended spacing: 12-15 feet.
Alternative nectarine varieties suitable for USDA Zone 7 include:
- Red Gold
- Carolina Red
Berry Shrubs that Grow in Zone 7
Fruit-bearing shrubs and trees that thrive well in USDA Zone 7 include:
- David Smith Mulberry
- Adams Elderberry
- Black Beauty Elderberry
- Ka-Bluey® Blueberry Plant
Dwarf fruit trees for Zone 7
- Moorpark apricot
- Ozark plum
When should you plant fruit trees in Zone 7?
The ideal time to plant fruit trees in Zone 7 is (between February and April (late winter or spring), which allows the trees to establish roots before the hot summer months.
Can you grow dragon fruit in Zone 7?
Dragon fruit is not cold-hardy to Zone 7 as it is native to tropical regions such as Mexico, Central America, and South America. It thrives in warm winter climates and is suited to USDA Hardiness Zones 9 through 11. Even so, the dragon fruit requires protection during freezes in Zone 9. If you wish to grow dragon fruit in Zone 7, plant it in pots and move them indoors during colder months.
What are the self-pollinating fruit trees for Zone 7?
Red Gold Nectarine
Brown Turkey Fig
Can mangoes grow in Zone 7?
Mango trees are not suitable for Zone 7, as they cannot survive in zones with temperatures dropping below 30°F. They prefer tropical and warmer subtropical climates with no danger of frost. They grow and thrive in California, Florida, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico. Colder temperatures and frost in Zone 7 can kill mango trees unless you grow dwarf varieties in containers and move them indoors during colder months.