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Here we are in mid-January. In my blog two weeks ago I mentioned how we can take advantage of this gardening downtime and plan out our gardening strategy come springtime. Then, in my blog last week on resolutions I mentioned FIGHTING INFLATION. So, now I want to expand on fighting inflation with the idea of growing our own fruit.
We can fight inflation by adding fruits and vegetables to our landscape. We can save hundreds of dollars and, at the same time, improve on the nutritional level of the food that we grow and it will taste fresher and better.
You may be saying to yourself “but, I don’t have room for a garden.” No problem! Think outside the box here and consider growing vegetables, herbs, and small fruits in containers. Or, add some of your favorite vegetables, herbs, and small fruits in and around your existing landscape plants. Both of these concepts are achievable.
So, if I have your attention now on growing small fruits, here are some thoughts and tips to consider as you make your plans. Remember the rule of “the right plant in the right place” to maximize plant vigor and health throughout the years to come. Consider the soil, the amount of sunlight needed, space and size, hardiness, drainage, exposure, and soil pH. Please, don’t forget to take into consideration the final size of the small fruit shrub or tree it will eventually become at maturity. Let me stress foremost that most small fruits require full sun or at least a minimum of six to eight hours of sunlight.
Here is my shortlist of favorite small fruits to consider growing:
Blueberries are without a doubt at the top of my favorite small fruits to grow and have become very popular because of all the health benefits of eating blueberries. They are considered easy to grow and low maintenance and do well growing in containers. I also find growing blueberries to add to the beauty of the landscape. They have small white flowers in the spring followed by fruit and a beautiful fall leaf color.
If you have the room to grow a small tree then consider one of the varieties of sour pie cherry. These trees are self-pollinating, thus only needing one tree, and are one of the least maintenance fruit trees that you can grow. Keep in mind that a dwarf sour pie cherry will grow to about 10’ to 12’ tall and wide so be sure to give this tree its needed space to grow and develop. With a large enough container, a sour pie cherry can be grown on a patio, balcony, or deck.
Fig trees, such as Brown Turkey or Celeste, are among the easiest fruit trees to grow. People love to pick and eat ripened figs right off the tree or they will use the figs to make jams and jellies.
Take into consideration the size and width of these plants. Both are very easy to grow and come in thornless as well. Both blackberries and raspberries can be eaten right off the shrub or used in making jelly, jam, and fresh pies.
So, as you stay indoors where it is warm, give some thought as to where you may want to plant some small fruit this spring. All it takes is a little education, some creativity, and some wiliness to think outside the box when it comes to adding to your landscape.
PLANT A LITTLE HAPPINESS & SAVE YOURSELF SOME MONEY!