Now is the per­fect time to plant fruit trees and cre­ate your own mini or­chard

Garden Answers (UK) - - What To Do This Month... -

Even the small­est of gar­dens can be­come a pro­duc­tive lit­tle or­chard dot­ted with fruit trees, and now’s the best time to get plant­ing. Se­lect a plant that’s been grafted onto a com­pact root­stock and train the stems so you can grow sev­eral dif­fer­ent fruits in a small space, ei­ther in the ground or in large con­tain­ers. Ap­ples and pears, in par­tic­u­lar, re­spond well to prun­ing. This means you can train them as stepovers to edge a path, as an es­palier against a wall or fence, or as sin­gle trunks known as cor­dons. Check the pol­li­nat­ing re­quire­ments of your cho­sen fruit tree – some will need to have one or two dif­fer­ent cul­ti­vars planted close by to en­sure fruit pro­duc­tion, or al­ter­na­tively you can grow a self-fer­tile cul­ti­var that doesn’t re­quire a pol­li­na­tor. It’s worth con­tact­ing a spe­cial­ist fruit nurs­ery, who will be able to ad­vise on both suit­able root­stocks and pol­li­na­tors. See our plant of­fer on p106 for four space-sav­ing ‘Duo’ fruit trees, fea­tur­ing two cul­ti­vars on each plant

RICH PICKINGS Grow a range of tasty fruits in pa­tio pots if you’re short on space

Dam­son ‘Far­leigh’ Dark blue plum-shaped fruit for bak­ing or pre­serv­ing on a com­pact plant. Self-fer­tile.

Cherry ‘Stella’ AGM Plump, shiny dark red fruit, ready for pick­ing in mid­sum­mer. Self-fer­tile.

Green­gage ‘Im­pe­rial Gage’ AGM Honey-sweet, golden-green fruit ripen in Au­gust. Self-fer­tile.

Plum ‘Vic­to­ria’ Lovely or­ange-red fruit for eat­ing raw and cook­ing. Fruits late sum­mer. Self-fer­tile.

Ap­ple ‘Dis­cov­ery’ AGM Early-fruit­ing eater with at­trac­tive glossy red fruit. Sweet and sharp flavour.

Pear ‘Con­fer­ence’ AGM Re­li­able heavy crops of juicy sweet fruit mid-late Septem­ber. Self-fer­tile.

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