It has been a bumper year for fruit in our gardens and I often include fruit trees in my garden designs. A great way of making the most of sunny walls and fences in a garden is to wire them up and add some trained fruit trees. Or you can put in wooden posts and run wires horizontally across them at intervals up the posts and plant the trained fruit trees this way. Either way you will enjoy beautiful spring blossom and tasty fruit to eat in the autumn.
Many people do not realise you have to grow fruit that are right for your area of the country. When I ask clients for their apple choices, many opt for Cox’s Orange Pippin. Great apples, but they will not grow well in the south of Scotland as we do not have summers which are long or hot enough. The same rule applies to other fruit such as plums or pears etc.
I send my clients a list of fruit choices which will do well in their area to choose from. Most suppliers will be happy to give you advice on fruit suitability for your garden and area.
It can help to go to a local fruit tree supplier who knows your local conditions too. In September I visited Tweed Valley Fruit Trees in the Borders and had an enjoyable morning looking at their stock and discussing different choices. See www.tweedvalleyfruittrees.com.
The bare root mail order fruit season has just started and you can place your order and over the winter your trees will be delivered to you for planting.
Adding fruit trees to a garden can also add to the design element, the trained horizontal fruit on the wall in this garden echo a wooden fence with horizontal pales on the opposite boundary. Trained Stepover fruit (horizontal cordons) can edge a border, sitting area etc. A small area of fruit trees in grass can add a soft informal natural feel to a more formal garden – it is up to you how you use them. Remember too – there is nothing like the taste of home-grown fruit and vegetables.