If you love home-grown organic fruits but don’t have a huge backyard to grow what you please, there’s a way around it. Foster a rooftop orchard with your favorite fruit trees. Don’t have a rooftop? Not a problem.
Growing fruit trees in containers is easy and you don’t need much space. You may even be able to squeeze one or two of these container fruit trees into small spaces, like a small balcony or on your patio deck.
It may produce just enough to cover the family’s requirements, and maybe a little extra for homemade jams you can give out to guests and neighbors. Read on, and you’ll learn how to grow fruits in containers and the varieties that adapt well to container growing.
Best Fruit Trees To Grow in Containers
There are many varieties of fruit trees that grow well in containers, so long as you choose the correct varieties to plant. If you plan on growing them in pots, search in the plant catalog to look for dwarf or semi-dwarf varieties that will grow well in a restricted environment. Contact us to inquire if you’ll need to get multiple trees to promote pollination. Here are some of the fruits that grow best in containers:
- Apple Trees
Apple trees grafted onto dwarf or semi-dwarf rootstocks are ideal for container growing. Make sure you select a self-pollinating variety, like our Gala Apple Tree, if you only have room for a single potted apple tree. Fuji, Gordon, Pink Lady, and Crabapples also adapt well to pots.
- Olive Trees
If you have a warm climate and plenty of sunlight all year round, tropical fruits like olives are an excellent choice for your container garden. The Arbequina Olive Tree is a great potted tree, and can even be raised as a houseplant if placed near a sunny window.
- Cherry Trees
Juicy cherries in the summers aren’t the only reason to grow a cherry tree. Many gardeners love its beautiful early spring blossoms just as much as the fruit. You’ll find a wide variety of cherry trees and shrubs that grow well in pots. Choose self-fertile varieties if you plan on growing only a single tree, and place it at a sunny spot to get the sweetest harvest.
- Plum Trees
Most plum trees are self-fertile and adapt well to a restricted growing space. They like to grow in soil with good drainage. Amend the potting soil with perlite to improve drainage. Golden Plum, Scarlet Beauty Plum, and Pixy are excellent dwarf varieties to grow in pots.
- Fig Trees
Figs like to be rootbound, which makes them an excellent candidate for being grown in pots. Instead of transplanting to a larger container as they grow, figs perform better with root pruning. Once in every few years, slide the rootball out of the pot, prune back the roots to one-third, and return it to the pot with fresh potting soil.
- Blueberry Bushes
The best part about growing blueberries in containers is that you can give them the slightly acidic soil they prefer, without disturbing the soil pH of the neighboring plants. All varieties of blueberry bushes grow well in containers. Use Blueberry Soil Mix to ensure abundant sweet summer fruit each season. Do note that since blueberries are not self-sterile, you’ll need to grow at least two different varieties to ensure pollination.
How to Grow Fruit Trees in Pots
Once you’ve picked the right variety to grow, it’s time to plant it. Here are a couple of things you need to keep in mind:
- Best Soil for Fruit Trees in Containers
When growing them in pots, your fruit trees will have limited space for the roots to look for nutrients. To make up for the lack of space, prepare the best potting soil that concentrates all the required nutrients in the restricted growing area. Save yourself much trouble and order a pack of Fruit Tree Planting Mix, which packs all the organic components that will ensure your tree’s healthy growth.
- Container Size for Dwarf Fruit Trees
Since the tree is going to be in the pot for a long time until you decide to move it to a bigger home, choose it wisely. Use a container big enough to hold the tree variety you have and make sure it has drainage holes at the base to drain out the excess water. Start the young trees in pots that are at least 10 inches in diameter, and transplant to bigger pot every two to three years, as the tree outgrows its existing home.
- Best Fertilizer for Fruit Trees in Containers
Growing in restricted soil, your fruit tree will quickly run out of nutrients and require additional doses. Use a slow-release fertilizer regularly to ensure a consistent supply of essential nutrients to the tree’s roots. Read the directions on the fertilizer package and make sure you don’t over-fertilize.
- How Often to Water Fruit Trees
Hot climates dry out the soil quicker, especially for potted plants so make sure you don’t leave your fruit trees thirsty. However, don’t keep the soil too watery either. Balanced watering is the key to healthy plants.
Just push your finger through the soil to see if the top 2 inches are dry. If the soil is dry, water it slowly and deeply until the excess water runs out through the drainage holes.
Growing fruit trees in containers allow city dwellers to enjoy home-grown, fresh produce. It also protects your trees from pests and diseases, which are a common problem in garden beds.
Furthermore, it makes it quite easy to give your container fruits the ideal growing conditions which are often a challenge to provide when growing plants in the ground. With so many reasons to start a potted fruit garden, what are you waiting for? Pick your favorites and transform your rooftop into a beautiful orchard.