Fruit Tree VarietiesThere are tall fruit bearing trees but there are also pillar shaped trees and dwarf trees (miniature varieties) which bear fruit. These are perhaps more suited to a smaller garden, or a patio. A duo-fruit tree grows two varieties together such as apricots and plums . Some fruit trees are self-pollinating, while others need a similar variety in the vicinity in order to fruit. Most fruiting trees are ready to harvest at the end of summer. Fruit is never so tasty as when you grow your own!
Fruit trees in garden soilYou can plant fruiting trees and shrubs practically all year round. Juvinile fruit trees from Bakker come to you bare rooted and are best planted immediately upon receipt (unless of course there is frost). The advantage here is that these young plants will quickly establish themselves so actually grow better than larger trees.
Fruit trees in plantersPillar forming, or dwarf trees can easily be grown in planters, specifically because they don't take up too much room. Perfect on the patio or decking! Plant fruit trees in pots, any time of year but if you plant in spring (March/April) the tree will root and establish even quicker.
Caring for fruit treesRemove weeds around the base of your fruit tree(s) regularly, but do this by hand because fruiters have shallow root systems – doing it by hand will stop those pesky weeds from taking all the nutrition in the soil, and prevent you damaging the trees roots. Fruit trees in the garden will generally get enough water from rainfall but if it hasn’t rained for a week, do water them generously and allow it to dry out again before repeating. Give a potted fruit bush of any variety a new pot every year, once all foliage has dropped off. As soon as it has fruited out you can prune the roots back by a third every 2 years and renew most of the potting compost too. Just give a top mulch of fresh potting compost every other year. Do water sufficiently when in a pot but be careful not to overdo it either! It is not necessary to keep the soil continually moist – this can even cause root rot, so be careful. Keep an eye on your potted fruiters - young plums and cherries showing new shoots is an indication that they need more water. Miniature tree varieties will thank you for extra water in spring and summer too. Above all, do allow the soil to dry out somewhat before watering again (dry, bone dry!). It's better to use a whole can of water once a week, rather than a few drops every day.
Don’t forget to feed potted fruit trees sufficiently too. Bakker has a special mineral fertiliser available for fruit trees that can be added to the watering can. Doing this once a year is usually sufficient. Fruit trees in the garden will usually be happy with an extra mulch of organic fertiliser in early spring.
Fruit trees are perfectly hardy but when potted give them a sheltered spot in the garden or even put them in the shed when it’s a severe winter.
Pruning fruit treesNewly received Bakker fruit trees will not require pruning. Some will need to be pruned for the first time after one year. Pillar types of fruit trees don’t grow side shoots so they generally don’t require pruning at all. If your tree grows too tall just top it off. Each type of fruit tree has its own ‘best time to prune’. Apricot and nectarine should only be pruned in a dry spell, apples and cherry trees in December, as long as it isn’t below zero. Dead branches can always be removed at any time.
Do also check out the following interesting products:
gardening advice online for more information on caring for fruit trees!