Apart from providing you with the sheer joy of picking out fresh fruit without stepping out of your home, fruit trees can also contribute to a healthy ecosystem. Fruit trees produce fresh oxygen, giving you and your family cleaner air to breathe, as well as encouraging wildlife to flourish.
Here are five of the easiest fruit trees to grow in a home garden:
1) Lemon Trees
Did you know if it werent for humans lemons would not exist? That is right, this fruit is man-made. The original lemon was a cross between a citron the original citrus fruit native to India and a bitter orange. Probably crossbred a thousand plus years ago before making its way into ancient Rome and becoming famous in modern Italy. However, you might say what about the wild bush lemon or rough lemon. Doesn’t it grow wild in Australia and from seed? Good point, but even this tree is a cross between a mandarin and citron.
There are many lemon varieties to choose from. They are all easy to grow and they provide an immeasurable service to world food. Where would we be without lemons? Lemons are very hardy plants and will grow in most soils and climate ranges. Even in colder climates that can get into the below zero temperatures, lemons are the coldest tolerant variety of citrus. Some lemon trees are reported to survive in places that get down to minus 10 degrees Celsius. They also do very well in containers and can produce fruit profusely. Therefore, they are good for small spaces and considering one lemon fruit can go quite a long way in the kitchen it is a great tree to grow. Every backyard should have a lemon tree because it is so true.
2) Plum Trees
Know the saying plum job? Meaning an easy job? Well, in the old English days plum meant 1,000 pounds, which was a lot of money back then. It also was slang for soft. Hence the same plum job to describe an easy job that pays well. Conversely, a plum tree is an easy tree to grow that pays you well in fruit. Even a small plum tree can be worthwhile growing due to its productivity. Grafted varieties can start setting fruit within the first year. Plums are not fussy when it comes to growing conditions and can do well in most soils and climates. Typically, plums are a cold climate plant needing a winter chill, which means they need a cooler temperature to trigger flowering and fruiting. However, here in the subtropics you can now get different varieties that have a low chill factor.
3) Mulberry Trees
Since mulberry leaves are the only food source for silkworms it’s not surprising that the mulberry is one of the most significant fruit trees in history since it was silk that first opened up the world to international trade over two thousand years ago. The original silkworm mulberry was the white variety from central China. Although the black mulberry from Western Asia is considered the best eating and often called the English mulberry despite being imported into the UK in the early 1700s. The other significant variety of mulberry is the red, which is native to eastern United States. In any case, all three varieties of mulberry are worth growing and of course, there are many hybrid varieties also that are well adapted to all sorts of soils and climates. In fact, in some areas these trees are considered an invasive plant. Nevertheless, no one can deny how good a fresh black mulberry is to eat plucked straight off the tree; or stood up as a mulberry pie; or made into mulberry jam. The thing is mulberries do not have a very good shelf life. The best are either preserved or eaten right after picking off the tree. That is why growing your own is such a huge advantage.
You can easily start a mulberry tree by cutting and creating a clone of the original tree. By cutting off a section of mulberry, just as the new growing season begins, and planting into a pot of soil should take root and grow in no time at all. Mulberries grow fast and will begin fruiting early on young trees so you will not have to wait long to enjoy this amazing fruit. You may not be able to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear, but you can easily grow and eat the fruit from this famous and ancient fruit tree.
4) Kumquat Trees
Kumquats are a variety of citrus that look like mini oranges, but they are not oranges at all. In fact, they are completely different species. Kumquats originated in Southeast Asia and were imported into Europe in the 1800s. There are several reasons why this makes the list of easy to grow fruit trees. Firstly, it grows in all types of soil. It has a huge climate range withstanding hot and cold conditions. The round variety of kumquat is the best for cold climates whereas the variegated leaf kind are not as easy to grow. The oval-shaped ones do not do as well in colder climates. Kumquats produce heaps of fruit and almost all year round in the subtropics. All kumquats do well in containers and are even one of the top trees used by bonsai growers. Particularly in China where its considered a good-luck plant and grown indoors. People often shy away from kumquats because they are a sour fruit to eat. But did you know that the skin on a kumquat is quite sweet? So if you actually eat it together it cancels each other out. The skin is really delicious. Many people prefer to use kumquats in other ways such as jams, marmalade, candied. How ever you eat them is up to you. Just grow it.
5) Apple Trees
Alexander the Great is credited to have found dwarf apples growing in Kazakhstan around two thousand five hundred years ago. So way back then, humans had started cultivating apples. Therefore it’s hardly surprising how advanced we are in apple cultivation with over seven and a half thousand varieties of apples to choose from around the world. It’s this massive variation that makes growing apples at home so easy because there is literally an apple variety for every location and situation.
Apple trees are typically grown in cooler regions but these days you can get apple varieties that will grow in just about any climate. They will also thrive in pretty much any soil or location. You can grow them in containers if you like the space or prune and train them heavily to fit wherever you want them.
Apple trees grow easily and fast from seed. Even when they fall from trees and self-seed the soil they can transplant and grow. Remember an apple a day makes 365 in a year.
In closing, a final point should be mentioned about growing these top five fruit trees. That is they can all be easily grown from seed. However, if you do be aware the result might not be the same as the parent. The fruit could be better although it’s usually the opposite. The fruit harvested from a seed ground tree is not as good. However if that happens it’s not all a waste of time and effort because you can always graft a section on to the rootstock that you have grown and create your own clone of the fruit tree you love.
For more information about tree types and tree care visit https://www.pressadvantage.com/story/39150-austin-tree-services-expand-to-round-rock-cedar-park-georgetown-and-leander.