Introductions By L.E. Cooke

Tuesday, 04 March 2014 22:03

Cooke's Purple Wisteria History

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COOKE'S PURPLE™ WISTERIA Wisteria sinensis 'Cooke's Purple' Cooke's Purple™ Wisteria is the result of my interest in having a purple blooming selection. In 1963, Dr. James Miller of Exeter, my optometrist, wanted me to see a seedling wisteria he liked. Most seedlings do not bloom and home owners become upset with wisteria without bloom. I was not interested in seeing another wisteria as we had 28 but I was volunteering with Dr. Miller in Boy…
Tuesday, 04 March 2014 19:41

Caroline Wisteria History

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CAROLINE PURPLE WISTERIA Wisteria sinensis 'Caroline' This selection was found in Santa Monica, California by William H. Chandler and named after his wife. Mr. Chandler was the Dean of Agriculture at UCLA. This wisteria was introduced through the arboretum at UCLA by Ms. Mildred Mathis. She planted it in the campus gardens. Ms. Mathias was a member of the World Identification Board became aware of Bob Ludekens' search for a purple wisteria. Mr. Ludekens is…
Tuesday, 04 March 2014 18:44

John Fanick Peach History

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JOHN FANICKTM PEACH Mr. Eddie Fanick introduced many shade and ornamental trees and a few fruit varieties. His son John managed their large retail nursery with many acres of trees being tested in their research orchard. A fruit tree from a seedling of La Feliciana near the nursery front door had high quality fruit. John's sons wanted to introduce the tree to their San Antonio customers and named it after their father John Fanick. The…
Tuesday, 04 March 2014 18:09

Fan-Cris Pear History

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FAN-CRISTM PEAR Mr. Eddie Fanick gave the L. E. Cooke Co the Fan-StilTM pear which we liked. Later he provided Fan-CrisTM which we planted in our orchard in 1981. We had too many pears, so decided not to put into production. The 1981 tree is still in Cooke I research orchard. We did not treat the tree for pear blight and it sets a heavy crop of good pears every year. The sales staff determined…
Tuesday, 04 March 2014 16:06

Fan-Stil Pear History

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FAN-STILTM PEAR Mr. Eddie Fanick supplied budwood in about 1967. The L. E. Cooke Co put it into production in 1972. This selection has been a very steady seller because of its resistance to pear blight and the high production of quality fruit. It is a pleasurable pear to grow as it continued to increase in production for years and when sales leveled off, it never went down as others have. Retail nurseries change fruit…
Tuesday, 04 March 2014 14:35

Fan-West Ash History

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FAN-WESTTM ASH (Fraxinus 'Fan-West') (Photo courtesy City of Tempe) In the mid 1960's Mr. Eddie Fanick introduced Fan-WestTM and Fan-Tex AshTM. Fan-WestTM is a natural hybrid of Texas Green Ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica) and Arizona Ash (Fraxinus velutina). The L. E. Cooke Co planted Fan-WestTM in our orchard in 1966 and it still looks good today. We had many Green Ash and hardy Ash for Canada and northern states. We began with Fan-TexTM in 1968 and…
Saturday, 01 March 2014 19:17

Arctic Fantasy Nectarine History

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HISTORY OF ARCTIC FANTASY® NECTARINE L. E. Cooke Co. Introduction Summer of 1991 E. Ray Houston, a retired teacher from Cal Poly (SLO), sent the L. E. Cooke Co budwood from a white seedling nectarine he had found. We budded and planted a few in January 1993 in the Cooke I research area where they still are of this writing in January 2014. All sales staff, management, and office personnel sampled the fruit and compared…
Monday, 24 February 2014 18:58

Austin Pomegranate History

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AUSTIN POMEGRANATE HISTORY The Austin Pomegranate came from central Texas. Richard Ashton, owner of Oak Creek Orchards in Brownwood, Texas contacted us about this fruit. Richard is a collector of pomegranates and wrote a book on pomegranates. This pomegranate came from Austin (hence the name) by way of a Syrian immigrant who brought this pomegranate from Syria. Ron Ludekens arranged for cuttings in 2007. We had limited production starting in 2009 with efforts to increase…
Sunday, 23 February 2014 21:32


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  Over a year ago I wanted to publish a web page of all the new varieties the L.E. Cooke Co has introduced to the nursery industry.  I thought that would be a eye opener to those just getting to know us.  I quickly browsed through the catalog making a list and realized that list was getting really long and (in my unbiased opinion) it was impressive. But I wanted more than just a list,…
Wednesday, 19 February 2014 23:38

History of L.E. Cooke Introductions

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History of L.E. Cooke Tree & Plant Introductions The company has over 60 varieties we have named and been the original producer.  We have close to another 100 we have helped introduce to the retail nursery trade. The L.E. Cooke Co began its history in the mild climates of Southern California in 1944.  For all that there is to like about the climate, there were very few choices for mild winter stone and pome fruits…
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