Fruit Tree Care

  1. The Scoop on Crabapples

    With so many different crabapples available today it is hard to know what to choose. Some of those old-fashioned crabapple varieties used to be wildly susceptible to apple scab and other diseases, to the point where the leaves would rain off the trees in August. The older selections also had fruit that was also large and fell to the ground in summer creating another mess. Those days of disease ridden, messy crabapple varieties are long gone, but not forgotten. Maybe you remember the old Hopa Crabapple from years ago? It was a huge grower with pink flowers, and once the flowers were done, it had no other attributes. Today, Nature Hills offers Crabapples of many types offering a myriad of flower color, leaf color, persistent fruit, and disease resistance. Crabapples are worth looking at once again!

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  2. A Unique Way to Use Strawberry Plants In the Landscape

    Maybe you don't have a vegetable garden at your home, and maybe you don't want to add one now, but check this new idea out:

     Include your favorite strawberry plants in your landscape as a ground cover plant. Beautiful glossy green leaves are just starting to grow in many parts of the country right now. Soon after they start growing their glossy green leaves, they make beautiful white flowers. The flowers come on hard and strong. Soon after the flowers, you will be picking the fruit.

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  3. Arkansas Black Apple: The Cabernet of the Apples

    Apples are the most popular fruit tree planted in the world with 7,500+ varieties to choose from. This can make selecting just one a challenge. Based on the adaptability alone, the Arkansas Black apple should be on the top of your list.

    Thought to have been discovered in the mid-1800's in Bentonville, Arkansas, it is said to be a seedling of the Winesap apple, which it shares many characteristics. It quickly grew to become a popular regional selection and was a commercial success into the 1930’s. The Arkansas Black has distinguished itself as a true Gem of home garden apple selections since that time.

    Very able to adapt to many climates, the Arkansas Black can tolerate the hot summer inland valley temperatures of California - sometimes more than 110 degrees - or the cold winter climates that are found in USDA Zone 5a - m

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  4. Young Peach Tree Pruning Tips

    Prune peach trees in early spring for the largest fruit

    Gardeners often fall into one of two categories: either they LOVE pruning time every year ("It's cathartic!") or they HATE pruning time every year ("I think that tree can wait till next year.").

    Unfortunately, it is part of the deal when you plant fruit trees. All fruit trees, but especially peach trees, need some coddling when it comes to pruning time. 

    Confused about how to prune a peach tree? Want to get the largest fruit possible? Read on!

    Pruning Young Peach Trees

    Your goal is to open up the tree so that the sun can reach the fruit. This is iimportant to good fruit color, and allows air to circulate which helps avoid pests and diseases.

    Too much shade on the

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  5. Dwarf Citrus Tree: A Perfect Accent for Your Baby's Room

    Indoor Citrus Tree

    Gearing up the nursery involves a lot of tough choices. After all, you and your baby will be spending a lot of time in there. You want it to be as healthy as possible for your little one, but also comfortable and decorative. There's no better way to achieve all of that than houseplants. Houseplants are nice decorative accents, and are well known for improving air quality, as they produce clean oxygen from their leaves.

    Choosing the right plant for your child's room is important. You want something that will be safe, non-toxic, and thrive in the nursery environment. Dwarf citrus trees are a good fit for the job. They actually require a lot of the same environmental conditions as babies! Like infants,

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  6. Fruit Tree Pollination: Does Your Fruit Tree Need a Friend?

    Many fruit trees require a pollinator, but what does that mean exactly?   Although there are fruit trees out there that are self fruitful (like some cherry tree varieties for example), others will require a recommended pollinator in order to produce fruit (like apple trees). Basically, fruit is produced

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  7. Fruit Tree Fertilization

    fertile_soil
    Fertile soil

    You want the best fruit your fruit tree can give, right? Good fruit comes from fertile soil, so the key is to  maintain soil health.  Sometimes, this means adding fertilizer, but know how to prevent over-fertilizing. Fertilizer in excess can be more damaging than no fertilizer at all. The most practical way of checking soil fertility is by investigating the annual growth of the tree.  If you inspect the branches and follow the branch from the tip to the previous year's growth, you can measure how much the fruiting tree grew in a season. New growth is flexible and green, while last year's growth is dar

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  8. Pruning Blueberry Bushes - How and When To

    Peach Sorbet Blueberry

    Blueberry bushes are enjoying a little renaissance in home gardening. You can readily find them in garden centers and with so many varieties these days, the probability of finding one that grows in your climate is pretty good. They are easy to grow and are so delicious when they're fresh!

    Pruning blueberry bushes is necessary to maintain their health.  However, you must be careful as pruning can directly effect the fruit production of your plant.  Pruning is best done when the bush is dormant, either in the late fall or the early spring.  Spring is often the preferred time because you will be able to see which (if any) branches were da

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  9. Planting & Pruning Peach Trees For Larger Fruit

    Peaches

    Do you grow your own peaches or nectarines at home? If not you should give them a try. They are an easy and (pardon the pun) fruitful tree to grow. Peach trees are native of China and belong to the Prunus species. The peach trees that are being grown in orchards today have a long history. Today orchard grown peaches are divided into two groups, clingstones and freestones. If the peach flesh sticks to the pit, it is a clingstone. Conversely, if the flesh falls away from the pit easily, it is freestone. Peach fruit has varying levels of acidity, and generally, the white fleshed peach is the least acidic. Yellow fleshed peaches tend to be more tangy and acidic. Fertilization or soil types do not affect skin colors of either

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  10. Planting Fruit Trees

    Fruit Tree Farm

    Many gardeners decide to plant a fruit tree in their home landscape. Before planting fruit bushes & trees, there are several things to consider. The first is what type of fruit tree to plant. It is best to plant a fruit tree that is local to the region, and matches the soil conditions. It is also important to understand that many fruit trees do not self-pollinate. For this reason, more than one fruit tree must often be grown. Once the type of fruit tree is decided, the actual tree must be chosen. Most fruit trees are sold bare root, meaning their roots are exposed. It is best to plant a fruit tree with a strong straight stem, which will provide

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