growing fruit and nut trees from seed. Over wintering small fruit trees.
I started a bunch of apple, pear, plum, peach, and cherry trees from seeds in the spring. They are all in 16 oz plastic disposable drinking cups and only a few are big enough to plant. Should I plant the ones that are big enough outside now or wait a few weeks? When should I take the smaller trees inside to overwinter? Before or after the leaves fall off? Where is the best place to overwinter them?
I overwinter potted strawberry plants in large rectangular flower pots. I have an unheated room in my basement where I overwintered the strawberries one year but the young runner strawberry plants don't make it through the winter in there; only the older plants survive. I also have an 100-year-old milk house where I usually overwinter the strawberries and most survive, but I am concerned it might be too damp in there for the fruit trees. I never have to water the strawberries in there because the soil stays damp in the winter. Sometimes there is condensation in the milk house in the winter too.
Which would be the best place to overwinter the fruit trees? Since they are in clear plastic drinking cups I can see a bunch of the trees have roots that are growing down the sides of the cups or growing around the bottom. Should I put them in bigger cups to get more soil around the roots? If so should I do it before or after the leaves fall off?
I also have 6 mulberry trees that I started this summer. They are in small plastic flower pots on my windowsills. Should I overwinter these with the other small trees, or would they be fine in the house over the winter on the windowsills?
I have also collected hickory nuts and butternuts. Should I refrigerate these nuts now for stratification and then put them in peat moss or paper towels in January or February? I have tried looking up information on how to plant these but I keep finding conflicting information.
Westmoreland County Pennsylvania