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Friday, February 10, 2012

Fruit For Your Home Garden

Many of us grow at least some of our own produce. Summer gardens can produce enough veggies to feed us through the season and perhaps even enough to put some up for the winter. Tomatoes, beans, squash, corn, and greens are common veggies grown in our back yards, but have you thought about fruit trees? Apples, pears, peaches and plums will grow very well in many parts of the country. Berries such as raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries also grow well here.

The home orchard need not take up a large space. A few trees of each variety can keep a family fed with fresh, nutritious fruit throughout the season and up to a month after if stored properly. Also, fruit can be easily canned and kept for use through the winter. Some planning is needed though, as trees can take up to 5 years after being transplanted from the nursery to produce good quality fruit. Talk to your local grower to find trees that will do well in your hardiness zone. Also, make sure to educate yourself as to what pollination your trees require, as many are not self pollinating, and require other trees to produce fruit.

Not to be forgotten is the variety of berries that will do well in Canada. Raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries are among the more popular ones that will be great for freezing raw or making batches of yummy jams & jellies, which are also easily canned in the home for year round use.

Fruit should not be forgotten or dismissed as part of your home garden. Easy home canning and the minimal space needed for a few trees or bushes, make a home orchard an ideal way to supply your family with nutritious, vitamin packed goodness that will pay for itself in little time and effort.

2 comments:

farmgal said...

Very good point about fruit tree's and the soft fruit bushes but you forgot to put in rhubarb. Not only is it one of the first things ready in spring, but like apples, its an amazing filler to help stretch the smaller fruits. It can be frozen, or cooked into fruit butter and dried for future use as well.

Northernhomesteader said...

Great article, thanks. Very timely for us as we are planning a new garden for the Spring and are debating which fruits to include that will survive and thrive here in Northern Alberta. Definitely apples and strawberries, but the jury's still out for others.