How did I get started in fruit? My interest began at the age of 5. My parents had just bought a large lot in what was then a new subdivision. I was terrified at the thought of moving from my happy home to this new site, dealing with a new house, a new school, and having to meet new friends. Too much NEW for a 5-year-old!
My reconciliation came when my father noticed that our part of the subdivision was developed on an old apple orchard. Since the developer had been so kind as to leave each lot with 3-4 large standard fruit trees, our lot was blessed with 4 apple trees. Apple trees? After tasting the luscious fruit and seeing how many were on the trees, my fear of change was gone. How can life be bad when you have your source of fresh delicious apples?
Growing fruits can be addictive, however. When to stop? There is always one more variety desired. Perhaps squeeze another tree in the corner of the yard? Grow a dwarf blueberry or raspberry in a tub on the patio? Plant columnar or espalier apple trees to save on space? The prospects are endless and the rewards can be great. You will never have too much fruit as friends are always willing to help out with this problem.
How successful can fruit growing be? Yes, the crop can vary based on spring frosts, harsh winters, insect and disease levels, etc. Some years are better than others, just like growing any crop. 2015 was a fabulous year for me:
Pears: 37 quarts of Bartlett Pears canned from one tree. Plenty left for fresh eating.
Apples: 2-6 bushels per tree (trees varied in size and age). 16 bushels harvested in total.
Plums: 300 prune plums off one Stanley tree.
Grapes: Each vine averaged about ½ bushel of Concord grapes.
Black Raspberry: 8 quarts from one plant!
Yes, my 2015 harvest was exceptional. But you cannot harvest if you do not plant! So let’s make next year the year to start your home orchard. We have a great selection of fruits. Call or stop in and we can help you be a successful home fruit grower too.