How to Plant Your Own Fruit Tree: A Guide - Home & Texture
Garden Fruit Tree

Sow, Grow, and Harvest: Planting Fruit Trees Made Easy

If you want fresh fruit at your fingertips, here where to start.

January 31, 2024 at 2:18 PM PST

Are you considering adding a bit of nature’s sweetness to your backyard? Planting a fruit tree can be an immensely rewarding—not to mention delicious—decision that connects you with the rhythms of the seasons. From choosing the perfect fruit tree to nurturing it throughout its life, here are all the details you need to know.

Apple tree
Photography Credit: Tom Swinnen

Choosing the Perfect Fruit Tree

Selecting the right fruit tree is kinda like choosing a companion for life. You’ll want to take into account various factors such as your climate, available space, and personal taste preferences. Here are some solid “starter” tree options. You can get saplings at a local nursery, or even online.

1. Apple Trees – The Timeless Classic

Apple trees are the quintessential choice for many orchard enthusiasts. Their adaptability to diverse climates makes them an attractive option. Whether you like sweet, tart, or somewhere in between, there’s an apple variety to match your taste. Just remember to choose a cultivar that thrives in your region’s unique weather conditions.

2. Cherry Trees – A Blossoming Beauty

Cherry trees not only bear delicious fruits but also grace your garden with stunning blossoms in spring. These trees thrive in areas with ample sunlight and well-drained soil. Varieties like Bing, Rainier, and Sour cherries offer a spectrum of flavors to savor.

3. Peach Trees – Sweet and Juicy Rewards

Peach trees promise the delight of biting into a juicy, sun-ripened peach. They flourish in warm climates, basking in the glow of abundant sunlight. Consider varieties like Elberta or Georgia Belle for their delectable, fragrant peaches.

Woman with orange
Photography Credit: Cottonbro Studio

4. Citrus Trees – A Tropical Touch

For those fortunate to reside in warmer climates, citrus trees are a tropical delight. Oranges, lemons, and grapefruits bring a slice of paradise to your backyard. With proper care, these trees can yield a continuous supply of fresh, tangy fruits. Also, if you get a lime tree, you’ll never have a shortage of garnish for your happy hour beverages. Everybody wins!

The Planting Process

After choosing your tree, or trees, you’ll want to make sure they thrive through the next harvest.

1. Location, Location, Location

If you can, select a sun-soaked spot in your garden that receives a minimum of six to eight hours of sunlight daily. Fruit trees love to thrive in sunshine. Make sure the soil in this location drains well, as waterlogged roots can spell trouble for your tree.

2. Digging the Hole

Dig a hole that’s twice as wide as the root ball and just as deep. This generous space provides ample room for the roots to spread and establish themselves comfortably.

3. Planting Your Tree and TLC

Gently remove the fruit tree from its container, taking care not to disturb the roots. Place it in the prepared hole, ensuring that the top of the root ball is level with the ground’s surface. Fill the hole with soil and gently tamp it down.

4. Soil and Mulch

Backfill the hole with the same soil you removed. Applying a two-to-four-inch layer of mulch around the base of the tree helps retain moisture, regulates soil temperature, and keeps pesky weeds at bay.

Maintenance and Care

Your fruit tree, like any relationship, requires regular attention and nurturing to thrive.

1. Watering

You may not have to water your tree necessarily, nature might do its job unless you live in a dryer climate. Keep an eye on your tree regardless and water if needed, which can range from once a week to once a month. Just be mindful not to overwater!

Pruned fruit tree
Photography Credit: Mark Stenbnicki

2. Pruning

Pruning is an art and science that involves shaping your tree and promoting healthy growth. Regularly remove dead or diseased branches to encourage new growth and maintain a balanced canopy.

Pest Control

Keep a watchful eye for common fruit tree pests such as aphids and caterpillars. Utilize organic pest control methods to protect both your tree and your precious fruit.

Fertilizing – Nutrient Boost

Feed your fruit tree with a balanced fertilizer during the growing season. This provides essential nutrients for robust growth and bountiful harvests.



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