Fruit Trees As Landscape Trees ?

We foresters, and arborists to some extent, never seem to think in terms of using fruit trees as part of a home landscaping¬† plan. However, it isn’t entirely our fault, since many homeowners seldom ask about fruit trees when they are seeking advice about what kind of trees to plant around their places. Perhaps both groups need to be reminded that a home fruit orchard can be a delight to the eye as well as the palate. Many standard varieties of apples, pears, peaches, apricots, plums, and cherries are also good shade trees, if planted in the right place. Dwarf trees that produce full-sized fruit can be used in smaller spaces. Most fruit trees can be just as lovely as flowering trees and large shrubs. They blossom too, and the fruit crop gives the color of a second blooming all summer; plus a great tasting come harvest time in the fall.

Fruit trees are either self-pollinating or self-sterile. Self-sterile trees require pollen from another cultivar of the same species for fertilization to occur. They need a compatible cultivar growing within 100 feet, preferably closer. Without this cross pollination of the flowers, self-sterile varieties will not bear fruit, even though they may blossum abundantly. Check individual fruit tree descriptions for pollination information.

Plant fruit trees to allow sun and space for their mature size. Most standard sized fruit trees will mature at 20 – 35 feet in height, and will need a growing space anywhere from 20 x 20 feet to 35 x 35 feet. Again, check spacing requirements for the type of tree to be planted. Dwarf varieties will mature at about 8 – 15 feet in height and need spaces from 10 x 10 feet to 15 x 15 feet. Most commercially grown varieties will come with the spacing recommendations, along with other pertinent information about the tree.

Homeowners with larger lots might find it very rewarding to establish an orchard using favored fruit producers. A home grown apple or peach, for example, tastes mighty good when plucked from ones own tree. There are also other ways to grow fruit trees around the homestead, if a larger growing space is lacking wherein to plant on a grid. My mouth is already watering for a nice juicy pear, apple, or peach; or apricot (I love em); or cherry; or plum; or…………

Fruit Trees As Landscape Trees

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