Frequently Asked Questions Featured Image

Helping our customers to order the right plant or tree for the area they live in, and providing tips and care instructions to have it thrive is part of our commitment to our customers. The questions and answers below are some that we receive the most. Should you need further assistance please contact us and one of our garden specialists will respond. We look forward to serving you!


    • How long will it take to get my Tomorrow’s Harvest trees?
    • The trees are shipped year round. Typical shipping time is 1-2 weeks depending on the location they are going to.

    • Can you really ship trees or plants this time of the year?
    • Since we ship all of our plants potted in soil, yes we are able to offer shipment year round. In the winter, we monitor and hold shipment temporarily if weather is too extreme. We add insulation to the trees as weather dictates, packaging each carefully by hand to ensure the best possible tree when it arrives at your home. In the summer, we water very well before the plant’s departure. Unlike our competitors who mostly ship bare rooted plant material, our plants, by traveling in the only soil they’ve ever known experience much less stress in transport.

    • How are your plants prepared to make their trip?
    • We carefully box each tree by hand, adding protective measures to absorb excessive vibration or movement while in transit. The root balls are then bagged to hold in moisture while the trees are on their way, with an additional card board collar placed over the tree to provide additional protection from the elements. Some leaf drop may occur, but the tree, once moved to a proper and safe location should re-foliate very quickly.

    • How do you succeed so well shipping plants in the heat of the summer?
    • Shipping through the summer, plant containers are bagged to hold in added soil moisture. Boxes are ventilated and the plants cushioned to absorb any road vibrations. Read more about our innovative packaging techniques HERE.

    • What can I expect from the plant upon arrival?
    • If there are any leaf issues from transport, the plant usually re-foliates very quickly if allowed to acclimate a bit before transplanting.

    Growing Questions

    • How long does it take for a tree to bear fruit?
    • It varies, depending on the type of fruit variety. But you should plan on it taking at least a couple of years. To find out the approximate number of years for each type, check the product details under “Characteristics” on this site.

    • What is “rootstock?”
    • Rootstock is the plant that makes up the root system of your Tomorrow’s Harvest tree. A different type of plant is budded or grafted onto the rootstock. This combining of plants gives you the best of both – a root system that is strong, supportive and pest-resistant, and a tree that bears the best fruits or nuts.

    • What does “bare-root” mean?
    • It means just what the term describes – that the roots are bare and not contained in any soil. The tree is in a dormant state. It comes to life when it comes into contact with soil when it’s planted. Though some nurseries ship plants this way, at Tomorrow’s Harvest we prefer to ship our plants in pots, ready to go! We have a specially designed plant container to ship plants to you in the soil they were grown in at our nursery. This helps reduce shock to the plant when you transplant it to your garden or orchard.

    • What’s a “scion?”
    • The scion is the upper part of a plant that has been developed by joining two different plants to grow as a single plant (an action called budding or grafting). The stock or rootstock is the lower part of the grafted plant that produces the root system.

    • What’s pH?
    • The pH scale measures whether the soil is acidic, neutral or alkaline. Soil with a pH below seven is considered acid. Above seven, the soil is alkaline. Fruit trees tend to grow best in soil that is near the “seven” mark (neutral) or slightly below (slightly acid).

    • What are chill hours?
    • No, they’re not the way minutes feel when you’re waiting for the #151 bus in Chicago in January. These are the number of hours between 45°F (7°C) and 32°F (0°C) that a fruit tree needs to bear fruit the next season. More information can be found HERE.

    • What are Plant Zone Maps?
    • Gardeners need a way to compare their garden climates with the climate where a plant is known to grow well. That’s why climate zone maps were created. Zone maps are tools that show where various permanent landscape plants can adapt. If you want a shrub, perennial, or tree to survive and grow year after year, the plant must tolerate year-round conditions in your area, such as the lowest and highest temperatures and the amount and distribution of rainfall. (Citation: Website – The National Gardening Association) More information can be found HERE.

      The 2012 USDA Hardiness Zone Map
      The USDA Hardiness Zone Map is one of several maps developed to provide this critical climate information. The USDA map is the one most gardeners in the eastern United States rely on, and the one that most national garden magazines, catalogs, books, and many nurseries currently use. This map divides North America into 11 separate zones. Each zone is 10°F warmer (or colder) in an average winter than the adjacent zone. (In some versions of the map, each zone is further divided into “a” and “b” regions.) (Citation: Website – The National Gardening Association)

    • Where can I go to find the plant zone for my area?
    • Our friends at the USDA, have a wonderful tool available to find your USDA Plant Hardiness Zone. CLICK HERE to access that site.