If you are thinking of adding fruit trees to your landscape this spring, we have some tips to help prepare you for a successful experience. Planting fruit trees is not complicated, but you can save some headache by knowing what things to consider before planting.
Half the battle is deciding which fruit tree you'd like to plant. Unlike non-fruit bearing trees and plants, fruit trees take some additional work to maintain. Certain plants like, fig, mulberry, persimmons, pawpaw and serviceberry are usually the easier trees to plant, don't need as much pruning and are more pest resistant. However, trees like pear, apple and peach are more labor intensive, even for the more experienced gardener.
You may not experience any issues for the first few years, but once they become of age and start to grow fruit, the real work will begin. The battle against pest and various diseases can become very time consuming….and expensive.
Each tree species will be prone to specific diseases or pests. In this regard, many would say that peach trees are the most difficult to maintain. Diseases such as brown rot can become a common battle, leaving the fruits rotted and/or bruised. The Peachtree borer feeds on the base of the tree, damaging and often times killing the tree.
Another thing folks commonly run into: Just because the plant is sold at a nursery does not mean it can withstand the Maryland winter weather. Trees such as citrus and figs need to be planted in large containers and then moved indoors when winter comes. If planted in the ground, the branches, base and trunk should be wrapped during the cold weather with an insulating cover of mulch for protection.
You should also take into account the mature size of the tree before planting it to make sure the space you have selected will provide enough room for it without damaging property or creating too much shade for surrounding trees and plants, depriving them of the sunlight and nutrients they need.
If you are limited on space or would like a low maintenance plant while still enjoying the fruits of your labor, consider smaller options such as strawberries, grapes, blueberries, raspberries and chokeberries. These vines and bushes will be smaller than their fruit tree counterparts but will still deliver delicious flavor and will make an appealing landscape addition.
If you would like help deciding which plant, vine or bush would be a great compliment to your landscape contact us today!