A beginner’s guide to growing fruit

cactus growing

Many people’s response to the thought of growing fruit in their garden is “I haven’t got room”, “the birds will eat it before I do”, “I’d rather grow flowers because they’re prettier”, or “it’s a bit too tricky”. Well, they’re wrong. And they’re missing out. Here’s why.

It’s perfectly possible for a beginner to successfully grow a good crop of apples, pears, plums, cherries, figs, apricots, peaches, nectarines, raspberries, grapes, kiwi berries, blackberries, blueberries, currants, gooseberries, and strawberries in a small space.

Just read that list again – it’s pretty impressive. Short of bananas, citrus and avocado, I reckon most people would be happy with that as a substitute for their usual supermarket fruit aisle. We garden writers bang on about helping bees – collectively these crops produce thousands of flowers just begging to be pollinated. Will they look pretty? Of course! How many of us would gladly grow an ornamental cherry or crab apple in our garden? Then why not grow a tree that delivers not only the blossom and autumn leaf colour, but a bumper edible crop to boot? The architectural foliage of a fig, the autumn leaf colour of a grape, cherry or blueberry, the billowy blossom of an apple, peach or blackberry – it’s all there for the taking, along with a massive trugful of delicious bounty.

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