By Amber Murray
Growing your own fruit trees is a whole different ballgame if you’re used to plants that produce food in just a month or two, like radishes, tomatoes, or zucchini. But, that doesn’t mean you should be intimidated by the idea of adding growing fruit to your gardening résumé. If you’re willing to plant your trees in containers and provide shelter indoors when necessary in colder climate zones, there are several fruit trees even novice gardeners can grow. Here are the five easiest fruit trees to grow almost anywhere.
Fig trees grow best against a sunny wall and with restricted roots. This means they’re ideal for a container garden on a balcony or patio. This tree prefers a fairly warm climate. Planting it in a container gives you the ability to move your tree inside if the weather should become unseasonably cold. Plant your fig trees in spring, water twice a week, give them some fertilizer once a month, and you’ll have a delicious supply of figs for your Mediterranean dishes in less than two years.
Apple trees can grow in any non-tropical climate, be planted in the ground at any time in the growing season, and a single tree can produce up to 130 lbs. of apples per year! Plant your apple trees at least 20 feet apart, in an area that receives abundant sunshine. Water once a week, add compost once or twice a year, and your trees will begin to produce apples in just one year or less.
Meyer Lemon Trees
Meyer lemons are a cross between lemons and oranges, resulting in a sweeter, juicier lemon. Although they require a warm climate when planted in the ground, they grow very well in containers, which can easily be moved inside during cold weather. As a bonus, they act as a wonderful natural air freshener for your home! Keep your tree in the sun when outside and water it every few days. Add a basic all-purpose fertilizer two or three times a month. Fruit can be expected within a year.
Pomegranate trees are very easy to grow in containers and their fruit’s gorgeous. If you have abundant sun exposure, you can even grow them indoors. Otherwise, let your tree soak up the sun outside and move it inside only when near-freezing temperatures are expected. Simply plant your tree in a 10-gallon container that’s a quarter-full of potting soil, and water it once a week. Add fertilizer once in the fall and once in the spring, and pomegranates will appear in two years or less.
Star Fruit Trees
Like fig trees, star fruit trees thrive with confined roots, making them ideal for being planting in containers and whisked inside during cold temperatures. Simply plant your tree in potting soil and water only when the soil feels dry. Fertilizer should be added in fall and in spring in order to see fruit production in under three years.
Growing your own fruit trees sounds a bit scary, but it’s entirely possible with a little dedication and these easy to grow trees. Invest a bit of time, and you will end up with healthy, homegrown fruit to share (or not!) for years to come. When it comes to fruit trees, the work is certainly worth the reward!
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