How to Grow Fruit Trees in Mississippi

Overview

Fruit trees can grow very well in the state of Mississippi as long as the grower understands how to address the unique environmental factors for successful growth and fruit yield. The soil in Mississippi can have subsoils of hard clay or sand that will have poor water drainage. In addition, Mississippi has a large insect population, making it necessary to be vigilant about pest control to avoid damage and disease. Even with these conditions, it is still possible to have much success with a variety of fruit trees. For example, peach, pear and apple trees are proven to do well with proper maintenance.

Step 1

Choose a location for your fruit tree that has red or yellow soil. With a soil test kit, determine if it has the proper pH levels and nutrients. For example, peach trees require a pH level between 6.0 and 6.5. Add any necessary nutrients indicated by the soil test.

Step 2

Prepare the soil in the fall season by loosening and turning the soil with a tiller or hoe. You can add needed nutrients during this process to give them time to fully absorb into the soil before planting your fruit tree.

Step 3

Plant your fruit tree between mid-December and mid-February. Cut away any broken roots sparingly. With a shovel, dig a hole large enough to accommodate the fruit tree's entire root system. Place a small amount of soil in the bottom of the hole and place the tree inside. Add soil until the roots are barely covered and pour in enough water to get the soil wet and settled. Finish adding the soil so that the fruit tree is buried deeper than it was at the nursery.

Step 4

Spray around your newly planted fruit tree with chemical weed killer to keep the tree from having to compete for moisture and nutrients. This will also lessen insect presence.

Step 5

Monitor the fruit tree for the presence of damaging insects. Contact your county extension office for help with pest identification to educate yourself on the types of insect problems known for your area of Mississippi. Infestations can change from season to season and it is important to stay informed so you can choose the proper pesticide product and method.

Step 6

Add fertilizer during the month of February. The amount and type varies depending on the type of fruit tree and its age. For example, the first year, a peach tree will need approximately one pound of 13-13-13 applied 6 to 8 inches away from the base of the tree.

Tips and Warnings

  • Never let the roots dry out. Keep them wrapped with wet burlap until placed into the ground. Water your fruit trees according to their needs. Mississippi soil can be prone to drought or too much moisture depending on the part of the state you live in. Always be extremely cautious when using pesticides. Follow the manufacturer's guidelines accurately.

Things You'll Need

  • Fruit tree
  • Soil test kit
  • Shovel
  • Hoe
  • Fertilizer
  • Pesticide
  • Burlap
  • Water

References

  • MSUCares.com: Growing Peaches in Mississippi
  • MSUCares.com: Central Mississippi Garden Calendar
  • MSUCares.com: Fertilizing Fruit Trees

Who Can Help

  • Plant Maps: USDA Hardiness Zone Mississippi
  • MSUCares.com: County Extension Offices
  • MSUCares.com: Dormant Season Sprays for Fruit Disease Control
Keywords: Mississippi fruit trees, southern fruit trees, grow Mississippi fruit

About this Author

Yvonne Ward began her professional writing career in 2004 with the publication of "Pickin' Cotton Sure Is Hard Work" in the book "Golden Short Stories Volume 1" for the Dahlonega Book Festival. She has since written a true crime book published in 2010, with contracts for two more. Ward is pursuing a Master of Arts in history and culture from Union Institute and University.