This past weekend, I planted my first fruit tree! Having just landed in the Greenwood neighborhood, one of the five areas where City Fruit harvests delicious pears, apples, plums, and more, I was disappointed to find not a single fruit tree in our garden.
I just moved from Washington, DC, where the closest I got to gardening or fruit trees was a box on our balcony filled with basil (or as I refer to it, pesto plant!). I am so excited to join City Fruit as executive director, to learn about urban fruit trees, and to grow one of my own.
Since I’m new to this, I wanted to introduce a new blog series for beginners like me.
We first considered the best location in our yard for planting the fruit tree. Based on City Fruit’s resources, we scouted out the best sun spots in the yard. Sugar requires sun, and the more of it the better. A fruit tree needs a minimum of six hours of good, preferably afternoon, sun.
We found the perfect spot, and then went to look for our tree at the Bradner Gardens Park annual plant sale. With the help of volunteer experts, we decided on the Hollywood plum for several reasons:
- The tree is self-pollinating, which means that it doesn’t require any other trees around to pollinate,
- It creates pretty red leaves in the early Spring, and most importantly:
- It makes tasty fruit!
For a list of good fruits to grow in the Northwest, check out this City Fruit resource page.
We planted the tree about 18 inches from our fence – checking in with resident fruit tree expert and our City Fruit founder Gail the next day, I learned this was a bit too close. Oops! We’ll be moving the tree this weekend to accommodate its full expected size – 12 feet tall with branches reaching out 6 feet (each way). Trees after all, grow round and tall, not just side to side. My first #fruitfail!
Learn along with me! Send newbie questions on fruit tree care to [email protected] and I will address them in my blog. If you’re already an expert or have some knowledge of fruit trees, you may be interested to know that City Fruit is hosting its first Master Fruit Tree Steward program, with support from the King Conservation District. Learn more about the program, and apply by Friday, June 13 on the Master Fruit Tree Steward program application page.