Growing and Caring for Fruit

The introduction of container grown fruit trees and shrubs and the availability of dwarf varieties of apple, pear and cherry has meant that every gardener can now successfully grow most fruits in their own back gardens.

Not all fruit is easy to grow and careful consideration should be given to the types and varieties suitable for your own location and conditions before making a final decision. The Gardening Register hope that the following information will help you produce a wide variety of fruit in your garden.

Buying Fruit Trees

Always buy your fruit trees from a reputable supplier. If you are confident in pruning then buy a one year old maiden whip. This has no laterals so will be cheap but you will need to train it yourself and it will be about three years before it produces a successful tree.

Two and three year old trees have a basic framework to work with but will cost you more. Avoid buying trees older than four years as they can be hard to establish.

Bare rooted trees will have to be planted in the autumn. When buying you are looking for a tree with good strong, evenly spaced branches without open buds. The main stem should be straight and the union strong and free from cracks. Roots should be well developed and spreading out in all directions. Remove any suckers growing from the rootstock.

Container grown trees can be planted at any time. Growth should be strong and free of pests or disease. The main stem should be straight and the union strong and free from cracks. Roots should not be growing through the base or side of the pot and the surface of the soil should be clear of weeds and roots.