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Growing your own fruit at home is incredibly rewarding and it will always taste better when it has come from your own tree, but taking care of fruit trees is not easy and you need to know what you are doing if you are to enjoy the literal fruits of your labour. Here are 4 tips that will help you to keep your fruit trees in good shape and allow you to grow delicious fruit at home.
Use Fruit Cages
If you grow fruit at home, you need to be prepared for the fact that creatures both big and small will try to steal it. Fruit is appealing to many different types go animals, so you will want to use fruit cages that can protect your fruit from various different critters. There are also cages for anything that you grow on the ground, which can protect you against ground-dwelling and airborne pests!
Check Your Trees Regularly
It is also important to get into the habit of checking your fruit trees on a regular basis. Keep in mind that trees are living organisms and are responsive to humans, so you want to visit your tree often to get an understanding of its needs. Be sure to pay close attention to the trunk, branches, leaves and the fruit to check that everything is in a healthy condition and so that you can take action if there are any issues, such as signs of disease.
In addition to the tree itself, you also need to consider the soil that it is growing from and take steps to ensure that your trees are getting enough nutrients. Mulching is vital for newly planted trees and you can use bulky organic matter like straw to conserve moisture and prevent the growth of weeds. You can also use your own garden compost as mulch – it is best applied in mid-to-late spring and again in autumn.
Pruning is also important to remove unwanted branches, improve the structure of the tree and promote new healthy growth. The key to success when it comes to fruit trees is pruning at the right time of the year. Generally, it is best to prune during winter when the trees are dormant. However, there are exceptions here as any stone fruit (plums, apricots, cherries etc) should be pruned in summer when the sap is rising because stone fruits are prone to Silver Leaf disease.
These are the 4 best ways to care for your fruit trees and will hopefully help you to find success with growing your own fruit. It is not easy, but growing your own fruit at home is incredibly rewarding and it will always taste better when you have grown it yourself. Not only this, but growing your own fruit can help you to make savings and lead a more sustainable lifestyle.