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Ask These Questions to Yourself Before Starting A Multi-Fruit Backyard Orchard

Shivam Dwivedi
Shivam Dwivedi
Apple Orchard

If you’re feeling ready to start your backyard orchard experience? Take a little break before diving in too quickly as it could lead to mistakes. Due to these reasons, it is best to start by asking the following questions to yourself:

What’s My Orchard Fruit Goal?

Home orchardists need to think about their goals before getting caught up in the excitement of buying newer trees.

If you’re interested in maximizing your apple cider production, some varieties are designed for this. Canning and baking enthusiasts should seek out fruit types accordingly suited to their purposes, while those who prefer to only snack on fresh fruit will have different taste priorities.

What’s my Climate Zone?

The more and more, you’re dreaming of a backyard filled with apples alongside citrus trees, what you can plant and grow will be primarily dictated by your hardiness zone.

Connecting with the local fruit growers, your nearest university’s extension office, and nearby nurseries will provide you with knowledge of what your region can support. It would also help you understand what region-specific pests and diseases you need to be most aware of.

Does My Site Have Good Drainage?

Many fruit trees do not do well in overly wet soil, that’s why proper drainage is essential for success. You have to assess your planting area’s soil conditions before putting trees in the ground to see whether you need to correct anything first.

A unique way to assess your drainage is the “Hole Test”. For this, dig a one-foot hole at your planting site and fill it with the required water. If it drains completely within three or four hours, fill it again. You will run into problems if the hole doesn’t drain within four hours after either the first or second filling.

How’s the Sun Exposure?

You can get the best fruit from trees by planting your fruit trees in the sunniest areas of your yard unless you live in a climate where temperatures are regularly above 110 degrees in the summer and make sure your trees will receive some afternoon shade too.

How much space do I have?

There’re many things that you should consider when factoring in the spacing needs for a backyard orchard. It includes the number of trees you want to plant, how much fruit you expect from each tree, and how much energy you want to give to maintain its specific size.

At last, we would like to suggest that your nursery should provide proper spacing for each type of tree, which largely depends on their rootstock. Keep in mind that it’s fine to go further apart, but that you’ll run into problems (especially regarding the tree roots) if you attempt to pack them in too close together.

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