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Friday, July 17, 2015

Ideas for the Home Garden - Fruit Tree Selection

This week's mini infographic garden idea sheet is about selecting fruit trees for your garden. With the space and condition constraints of our current urban garden, this is a particularly difficult part of the garden plan for us and there are plenty of scribbles in my planning notes.  The summary below touches on key considerations and includes a summary of sizes and fruiting times (full fruiting) based upon our research; however, these are rough figures only - every plant and garden will be different. I have been learning a lot about soils, pruning, training, rootstock, and grafting over the past few weeks!  Of course, this information is ever-changing as there are always new fruit tree varieties on the horizon, especially since the market for urban garden-friendly varieties is a growing (no pun intended) opportunity. These notes are but a brief snapshot in time.

In selecting the edibles for your garden, I think the best place to start a wish list is with what you like to eat.Why expend money, effort, care, and time into something you are going to let wither unpicked (although the wildlife would thank you all the same!) when you can put it into growing your favourites? Yum! From your dream wish list, the practicalities of space, climate, cost, etc. will help you select which of your wish list you can try growing in your garden. Time is also an important consideration since most fruit trees are slower to yield (and much slower to mature to full yield) that faster growing veggies, herbs, and berries.  Here are some tips:

We have a moderate damp winter, warm summer, and a smallish garden with a myriad constraints for structures, mature trees, fences, retaining walls, and other pre-existing features. Because of this, our selection criteria include: disease resistance to cope with our conditions without needing harsh chemical treatments, self-pollinating and/or multi-grafted trees to fit more edible variety into our small space, and small mature size potential to maintain safe-distances as well as balance in our space. For fruiting speed and multi-functional screening, we are going to include some vines as well.  Do you have a favourite variety to suggest? We would love your inputs - please leave a comment or post us a message on the GiRL Facebook page. Thanks ever so much!  I am working on the final selections now (winter dormant shopping and planting), and look forward to sharing our garden with you as it grows.  Next week, berries!

Looking for more fruit tree planning ideas and inspiration?  Want to go deeper on your favourite fruits? Looking for local growing tips for your part of the world? Check out these ideas (and more) from Amazon:

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