Container Growing Fruit Trees – Tree Gardening For Small Space
Container growing with fruit trees is a marvelous idea for gardens or yards that have poor soil plus the fact that you can move them around to protect them from freezing conditions. Container growing with fruit trees can be done with regular sized fruit trees but only for a couple of years and then they need to be planted into the ground.
Best Fruit Trees For Container Gardening
Growing fruit trees in containers is more suited for the dwarf varieties and it makes caring for them much easier. You can find dwarf varieties of almost any common fruit tree, but citrus trees are the most commonly grown. Some of the most popular dwarf citrus trees to grow in containers are the Meyer lemon and Dwarf Kaffa lime.
The Meyer lemon is sometimes believed to be a cross between a mandarin and a lemon. This particular lemon has a very sweet flavor and is not as sour or acidic as a true lemon. The Dwarf Karra lime rind and its double-lobed, sweet-smelling leaves are often used in cooking.
Today while wandering through the home and garden center I discovered many dwarf fruit trees other than citrus. There were peach, several varieties of apple, plum, pear, and Bing cherry.
The fruit on dwarf fruit trees produce regular sized fruit and the tree will grow anywhere from 5 to 8 feet tall. If you order bare-root fruit trees inspect the tree when it arrives to be sure the packing material is still moist and the roots are in good shape. As with any bare-root tree, make sure the roots never dry out before planting.
When potting fruit trees that have a bare-root you can use any kind of container as long as it has drainage holes and is an adequate size for the tree, 6 – 9 inches for a tree up to about 2 years old and 10 to 16 inches in diameter for a full grown dwarf fruit.
Place some gravel in the bottom of the container for drainage then mix a few handfuls of compost with potting soil and fill the container half full or you can half fill your container with a light potting mixture that is well drained.
You now need to make a mound of soil in containers center and place the root ball of the tree on top, spread the roots and cover with more potting mixture. You may want to place a stake in the soil in order to help the tree remain sturdy and straight while the roots establish themselves. Water the tree to keep it moist and use a fruit tree fertilizer that is high in nitrogen and place in full sun that has a southern exposure.
The one nice thing about container growing with fruit trees is the fruit will usually appear a season or two ahead of the garden planted trees. You will not get as much fruit on these container fruit trees as you would on the garden planted ones.
For the gardener who wants to grow fruit trees and has a limited amount of space in a garden, container-grown fruit trees is the answer as they can be placed them on a deck or a patio and can be moved around when needed.