14 Delicious Fruit Trees That Grow In North Texas

North Texas offers a climate perfectly suited to growing a variety of fruit trees. All it takes is a little elbow grease and patience to cultivate your own homegrown produce.

While there are plenty of options available for the North Texan orchard, it’s also true not all fruit trees will thrive in this region. North Texas toes the line between subtropical summers and cool winters, so fruit trees must be able to tolerate both high heat and freezing temperatures. 

In this article, I want to share some of the best fruit trees that grow in North Texas and offer some of my own tips and tricks for planting and maintaining a backyard orchard.shade

Understanding The North Texas Climate

North Texas is an unofficial (but widely referenced) region that encompasses about 9,000 square miles. Dallas sits almost exactly in the centre of North Texas but the area also includes several other cities with populations above 100,000. Contrary to common belief, the Texas Panhandle is not considered to be a part of this region.

As far as climate goes, North Texas is categorized as humid and subtropical. Most of the area falls within USDA Hardiness Zone 8. However, some of the western parts of North Texas qualify as Zone 7.

Despite experiencing humid summers, North Texas is somewhat prone to drought. It’s also common for daytime temperatures to exceed 100°F in the summertime.

North Texas winters are known for being moderately cold and blustery. Temperatures often fall below freezing at night. The region rarely experiences snow but, according to the National Weather Service, freezing rain is relatively common. 

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14 Fruit Trees For North Texas

You can grow any of the fruit trees listed below throughout North Texas! Just note that some require special care — e.g., must be grown in containers or sheltered from winter weather — to perform their best.

In my experience, one of the most important things about planting fruit trees in this region is the variety or cultivar you choose. For example, just because you can grow apples in North Texas doesn’t mean that all apple trees will thrive in the region.

I’ve listed some of the most commonly recommended varieties under each fruit type to help get you started.


1. Apple

(Malus domestica)

  • Recommended Varieties: Gala, Fuji, Granny Smith
  • Hardiness Zone: 3-8
  • Mature Size: 25-35’

Whether you want to enjoy fresh-picked produce or baked goods, the apple is the quintessential fruit tree for any home orchard. In Texas, apple trees commonly flower in the spring and are ready to harvest in summer or early fall.

Apples typically need a certain number of chill hours — total time averaging between 32 to 45°F each winter — to produce fruit the following spring. Since North Texas winters are relatively mild, you’ll need to plant a variety that requires a low number of chill hours. For example, ‘Gala’ apples only require about 500 chill hours to fruit.

Apple trees with low chill hour requirements also tend to be better equipped to tolerate summer heat. This is great news for North Texan gardeners since apples are more traditionally cool-climate crops.


2. Apricot

(Prunus armeniaca)

  • Recommended Varieties: Bryan, Hungarian, Moorpark
  • Hardiness Zone: 5-8
  • Mature Size: 20-30’

Apricots are stone fruit that closely resembles (and are related to) peaches. However, they are smaller and differ in flavour.

It’s certainly possible to grow apricot trees in North Texas but fruit production may be hit or miss. This is because apricot trees bloom very early in the year and are also susceptible to frost damage. If the year’s flower buds are damaged by cold temperatures, no fruit will appear later in the season.

An apricot tree planted in North Texas may only set fruit every few years. Fortunately, these trees also offer ornamental appeal. While a lack of fruit is disappointing, there’s still reason to enjoy this tree in its off years.

asian pear

3. Asian Pear

(Pyrus pyrifolia)

  • Recommended Varieties: Shinseiki, Hosui, Shinko
  • Hardiness Zone: 5-8
  • Mature Size: 30-40’

Asian pears are very similar to apples at first glance. They are distinctly rounder and less cold-tolerant than traditional European pears.

According to Texas A&M University, Asian pear varieties show promising results in all but the hottest parts of the state (due to insufficient chill hours). This means that you have a very good chance of successfully growing your own pears in North Texas!

Another reason to opt for Asian pears in North Texas is their somewhat improved resistance to bacterial fire blight. Note that resistance to fire blight does vary from one type to another, so it’s extremely important to select a variety with low susceptibility. 

European Pear

4. European Pear

(Pyrus communis)

  • Recommended Varieties: Warren, Ayres, Magness
  • Hardiness Zone: 4-8
  • Mature Size: 40-50’

European pears bear the classic asymmetrical shape we expect of the fruit. These trees tend to be slightly larger and are more cold-tolerant than Asian varieties.

The most common European pear varieties — e.g, ‘Bartlett’ — are poorly suited to North Texas because of their vulnerability to bacterial fire blight. 

When selecting a pear tree for this region, I strongly suggest choosing one that is resistant to fire blight. As long as you can keep the tree healthy, growing European pears in the region is relatively easy.

Ficus carica

5. Fig

(Ficus carica)

  • Recommended Varieties: Celeste, Texas Everbearing
  • Hardiness Zone: 6-9
  • Mature Size: 10-20’

Figs are infamous for storing poorly and costing a small fortune, so there’s no better way to enjoy this fruit than fresh off of the tree. 

With proper site selection and minimal maintenance, figs can be some of the easiest fruit trees to grow in North Texas. Some tips provided by the Dallas County Master Gardener Association include pruning the innermost canopy for optimal airflow and mulching around the base of the tree to fend off weeds.

‘Celeste’ is without a doubt the most highly recommended fig variety for North Texas and similar climates. Trees may need protection from harsh winter freezes to prevent dieback but — once established — are also capable of resprouting from their root systems.


6. Jujube

(Zizyphus jujuba)

  • Recommended Varieties: Li, Lang
  • Hardiness Zone: 6-11
  • Mature Size: 30-50’

Jujubes, also known as Chinese dates, are small, red fruit that grows incredibly well throughout most of Texas. These trees tolerate a wide range of temperatures and need as little as 200 chill hours per year to produce fruit.

Jujube trees prefer full sun and will grow in almost any type of soil. The jujube is one of the most drought-tolerant fruit trees out there. They can also survive mild flooding.

To grow jujubes of your own, you’ll want to invest in a grafted sapling of the variety ‘Li’ or ‘Lang’. Trees grown from seed or propagated from unknown sources tend to be of very low quality.


7. Kumquat

(Citrus japonica)

  • Recommended Varieties: Marumi, Nagami
  • Hardiness Zone: 9-11
  • Mature Size: 8-10’

Kumquats are a type of citrus that grow on naturally compact trees. Unlike oranges, lemons, and limes, however, the entire fruit (skin and all) is edible.

If you know anything about growing kumquats, you may already be aware that these citrus trees are poorly suited to North Texas winters. But you can still grow kumquats in containers with great success.

Due to their small size, kumquat trees grow quite well in containers. They need at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight per day, so choose a well-lit location like a patio or south-facing porch. Move the tree indoors in the wintertime.


8. Peach

(Prunus persica)

  • Recommended Varieties: Harvester, Loring, Red Globe
  • Hardiness Zone: 5-9
  • Mature Size: 15-25’

Although peaches are synonymous with Georgia, they also grow well in North Texas. In fact, peaches represent a significant portion of the Texas orchard industry.

There are several peach varieties that will thrive in North Texas, including some developed by Texas A&M University. I’ve listed some of the best options above.

If you venture outside of these recommendations, be sure to note each variety’s required chill hours. North Texas receives about 750 to 950 chill hours each year on average, so you’ll want to select a peach tree to match.


9. Pecan

(Carya illinoinensis)

  • Recommended Varieties: Pawnee, Sioux, Choctaw
  • Hardiness Zone: 5-9
  • Mature Size: 70-100’

Not only are pecans native to Texas but Carya illinoinensis is actually the official state tree. If you have the space for one, planting a pecan tree is an easy way to cultivate edible nuts in your own backyard.

The Denton County Master Gardener Association recommends transplanting bare-root pecan trees in winter or early spring and container-grown trees in the fall or early winter. This ensures the young trees have time to establish themselves before encountering the summer heat.


10. Persimmon

(Diospyros kaki)

  • Recommended Varieties: Eureka, Tamopan
  • Hardiness Zone: 7-10
  • Mature Size: 20-30’

Persimmon is an orange, tomato-shaped fruit that grows on large shrubs and trees. It has a sweet, mild flavour and resembles an apricot in terms of texture.

Although Texas has a few native species of its own, the best option for fruit production is the Japanese persimmon. One native species — Diospyros virginiana — is often used as a strong rootstock for Japanese varieties.

These trees are technically hardy down to 0°F but spring flower buds are often damaged by a late frost. Otherwise, persimmons require minimal chill hours and are well suited to North Texas.


11. Plum

(Prunus salicina)

  • Recommended Varieties: Bruce, Morris, Santa Rosa
  • Hardiness Zone: 4-9
  • Mature Size: 15-30’

Japanese plums (Prunus salicina) are recommended for the North Texas climate over European varieties (Prunus domestica). The rationale behind this is that European plums require greater chill hours per year than the region typically offers.

Note that Japanese plums tend to bloom earlier than their European counterparts. In most cases, however, North Texas is warm enough that frost damage is of little concern.

Many recommended trees are at least partially self-fertile. But planting two different plum varieties will improve pollination and produce a larger harvest on average.


12. Pomegranate

(Punica granatum)

  • Recommended Varieties: Russian 26, Texas Red, Salvatski
  • Hardiness Zone: 7-10
  • Mature Size: 15-20’

Pomegranates represent some of the best fruit trees for Central and South Texas. In North Texas, however, they tend to suffer from cold winters and short growing seasons.

To grow a pomegranate tree in the North Texas region, you’ll need to select a cold-hardy variety. I also strongly recommend investing in a dwarf or semi-dwarf tree that can be kept in a container. 

Your pomegranate tree will still require extra care in the winter and early spring to prevent cold damage. 


13. Satsuma

(Citrus unshiu)

  • Recommended Varieties: Arctic Frost, Orange Frost, Owari
  • Hardiness Zone: 8-11
  • Mature Size: 12-20’

You might not recognize this citrus variety at first glance. But if you’ve ever eaten canned mandarin oranges, you’re already familiar with the pint-sized satsuma fruit.

Satsuma trees are naturally more cold-tolerant than most citrus varieties. Newer cultivars — e.g., ‘Arctic Frost’ — have also been developed to handle colder growing regions. However, the majority of North Texas is still too cold to plant these trees in the ground.

I recommend planting your satsuma tree in a large container set on a rolling base. This lets you easily relocate the tree into a garage or shed when temperatures drop below freezing.

Sour Cherry

14. Sour Cherry

(Prunus cerasus)

  • Recommended Varieties: Montmorency
  • Hardiness Zone: 4-8
  • Mature Size: 12-18’

North Texas winters are too unpredictable to produce quality sweet cherries. The good news is that tart or sour cherry trees grow quite well in the region.

Sour cherries are ideal for baked goods, preserves, and juices. The flowers themselves offer ornamental appeal to the landscape.

As is true of many fruit trees, sour cherry buds are at risk of late frost damage in the spring. Select a cultivar based on required chill hours — ‘Montmorency’ is recommended by Texas A&M University for the area — for the best results.

FAQ Fruit Trees That Grow In North Texas

What Is The Best Nut Tree For North Texas?

Pecans are undeniably the best nut tree for North Texas. Pecan trees are native to the state of Texas and grow incredibly well in almost all of its regions. In addition to providing an edible harvest, pecans make excellent shade trees.