Gardens, like children, need nurturing to grow. Genetics certainly plays a role. Environment is significant too. A little TLC, however, goes a long way to ensure a happy, healthy garden. Today, I’m enjoying the fruits of my labor, literally and metaphorically.
This is the break-out year for our four-in-one fruit tree. We bought the grafted, stone-fruit tree as a gift for my son’s 10th birthday. I researched the guidelines for pruning the tree, and received additional tips from my nurseryman friend, Doug. Following that advice, I pruned the branches by 40-50% every year for the first three years. It seemed drastic to my young son who was pretty upset with me even though I was able to show him the research. One of the four grafts died, and I’ve never heard the end of it.
Where was I…oh yes, the fruits of my labor. Well guess what? This is year four and the tree is now covered in fruit. There is more fruit than we’ve had in the first three years combined.
Last year’s small bounty disappeared overnight. This year we have so much fruit that the rats and squirrels have only made a small foraging dent. We might actually be eating peaches, plums and nectarines this summer. Oh happy days!
Do you have a favorite fruit?