Fruit trees are attractive, easy to grow and are available in a wide variety of shapes and sizes. Dwarf fruit trees grow well in containers or in small gardens; larger fruit trees thrive in backyards and are often used in landscape designs. A blossoming fruit tree provides homeowners with a beautiful burst of flowers every spring. Best of all, gardeners and their families have the pleasure of harvesting and enjoying fresh, healthy fruit crops every growing season.
The apple tree is a low-maintenance tree that thrives in almost any environment. Mature apple trees reach 12 to 20 feet in height depending on the variety of tree. Plant apple trees in well-drained soil during the early spring after soil has thawed. The apple tree requires full sun exposure to produce fruit; plant trees where they'll have at least six hours of sunlight each day. Apple trees are not self-pollinators and need another apple tree with the same bloom time planted nearby in order to produce fruit. According to North Carolina State University, the Jona Gold, Golden Delicious, Braeburn and Fuji are all mid-season producers. Red Delicious and Empire are early-season apples. The Rome is a late-season variety of apple.
The pear trees is a long-living tree that grows well in both warm and cool climates. Plant pear trees in the early spring in cooler climates and in the fall in warmer areas. Choose a spot that is slightly elevated and sloped in order to protect the early blossoming pear tree from frost. The average pear tree reaches a height of 12 to 20 feet. According to Texas A&M University, pear trees thrive in well-drained clay or heavy loam soils. Trees require full sun exposure and are not self-pollinating and need another pear tree nearby, within 40 to 50 feet, in order to produce fruit. Types of European pears include the Bosc, D'Anjou and Bartlett. Varieties of the Asian pears are Hosui, 20th Century and the Shinseiki.
The hardy plum tree grows well and produces delicious fruit in every climate zone. Plant plum trees in the early spring after the chance of frost has passed. Trees require full sun exposure and humus-rich, well-drained soil. A standard-sized plum tree reaches a mature height of 10 to 20 feet and has a productive lifespan of approximately 15 to 20 years. Some plum trees are self-pollinating; others are not and require another blooming plum tree nearby to produce fruit. There are three groups of plums: Damson, European and Japanese. Damson plums are used for cooking; varieties include the Shropshire and French. The Prune, Stanley and Rein Claude are types of European plums, which are good eating plums. Shrirno, Burbank and Elephant Heart are varieties of Japanese plums.
Plant a new peach tree in the early spring once the soil has warmed. The peach tree thrives in well-drained, sandy, clay or loamy soils. Trees require full sun exposure, at least six hours a day to produce fruit. The average-sized peach tree reaches heights between 10 and 25 feet. Most peach trees are self-fruitful and will not need other trees nearby for pollination. Varieties of peach trees are grouped by regions called low-chill, medium-chill and high-chill. When planting peach trees, choose the proper variety for your climate zone. Warmer climate zones have low-chill regions, colder climate zones have high-chill regions. Tropic Snow and Florida Crest are low-chill peaches. TexStar and June gold are mid-chill region varieties and Dixiland and Milam grow best in high-chill regions.