How to Choose a Fruit Tree
How to Choose a Fruit Tree
With so many varieties readily available, when it comes to choosing a fruit tree you may feel unsure on where to begin. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the most helpful considerations to have in mind when finding your perfect tree.
How Rootstock Effects Ultimate Height
A tree’s rootstock will determine its eventual height and spread, so many varieties can be grown to the perfect size if they are paired with the right rootstock. For every fruit free you have your eye on, there is a selection of rootstocks to choose from. Aside from determining your tree’s ultimate size, they can also reduce the chance of disease, which provides peace of mind for many gardeners.
How Do I Make Sure My Tree Fruits?
In order to bear fruit, your tree will need to be pollinated, and this requires pollen to be transferred from the male part to the female part of a flower. Pollination can be ensured by having either of the following:
- A pollination partner: A compatible tree producing the same type of fruit; specifically a fruit tree belonging to the +1 or -1 group. Fruit trees that are not in these categories have either already flowered or are yet to.
- Self-pollinating tree: Some fruit trees are self-fertile; examples include the most common varieties of peach, apricot, nectarine, and sour cherry.
How Do I Keep My Tree Happy?
Another consideration you may have is how much maintenance to provide for your fruit tree. To flourish, your tree will appreciate:
- Generous waterings: To establish a healthy root system, young trees should be watered thoroughly after they have been planted. After this, you can water them generously once or twice a week. A good indicator of when your tree is ready to be watered is when the top two inches of soil become dry.
- Formative pruning: As your fruit tree grows, it is important to carry out some pruning to encourage balanced growth, which will in turn improve the quality of your fruits. For more specific pruning advice, why not browse our range of detailed pruning guides?
- Clean surroundings: Come autumn when your trees lose their leaves, try to sweep up all of the fallen foliage and fruits. These can carry bothersome pests, so either keep them as far away from your tree as possible (the wind can blow them back), or add them to a bonfire.
Heritage and Modern Varieties
Depending on your preference, you can either pick a heritage or modern fruit tree variety. Heritage varieties allow you to taste a piece of history that spans many generations back, and modern varieties are easier to grow and interestingly, produce the fruit you may find yourself browsing in supermarkets.
Our Top Picks For Providing Delicious Picks…
'Red Windsor’ Dessert Apple Tree: Forming sweet, crunchy fruits that emerge after your garden has been graced with a shower of blush-white flowers, ‘Red Windsor’ will make a quintessentially British choice.
‘Sasha’ Cherry Tree: A mid-season dessert variety, this cherry will form a generous amount of deep red fruits that are wonderfully aromatic.
‘Concorde’ Pear Tree: Cropping abundantly, this pear tree will gift you with sweetly-flavoured dessert fruits, in addition to a display of fragrant white blooms come spring.
‘Victoria’ Plum Tree: Carrying the Award of Garden Merit, this plum tree is a favourite amongst gardeners bearing reliable crops which can be incorporated into a myriad of recipes.
'Chelsea’ (King James) Mulberry Tree: Surviving as cuttings from the last remaining tree which was grubbed to make way for an air shelter, this historical mulberry will bear intensely flavoured fruits which emerge early in this tree’s life.
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