Fruit Trees For a Temperate Climate

As I watch the fruits ripen on the trees in our own forest garden, I thought this would be a good time to explore the various fruit tree options for a temperate climate garden. Of course, the best trees for your own specific garden will depend on:

  • Your climate zone and the micro-climate in your garden.
  • The soil type, pH and conditions.
  • The space available.
  • You and your household’s preferences (which fruits you actually like to eat).
  • Whether you will see fruits (or products made from them). And if you are, the market in your area for different produce.

Typical fruit trees for a temperate climate garden include:

  • apples
  • pears
  • quince
  • plums, damsons, gages
  • cherries
  • fig
  • medlars
  • mulberries
  • elderberry

And a few more unusual options are:

  • Amelanchier ssp.
  • Arbutus unedo (strawberry tree)
  • Hawthorns
  • Sea buckthorns

Where it is a little warmer (or potentially under cover):

  • peach
  • apricot
  • nectarine
  • citrus trees
  • persimmons
  • pomegranate
  • Chilean guava.
  • Pineapple guava.
  • Chinese loquats.

Of course, there are also plenty of other fruits that can be grown on canes, shrubs or bushes… and this is by no means an exhaustive list. But this list might help you identify different options to explore.

It is also important to remember that the type of fruit you would like to grow is not the only decision you will have to make. When choosing which fruit trees to grow in your garden, you will also have to choose varieties/ cultivars. And in many cases, you will have to decide on which rootstock they should be grown. The rootstock determines how large and vigorous a tree will be.

I would highly recommend thinking holistically when it comes to choosing any plants for your garden. So whenever a new fruit tree is being considered, it is also a good idea to consider up front the guild plants that will support it as it grows.

Here you can read more about the process I went through when choosing and planting a new plum tree in my forest garden: How to Plant a Plum Tree Step-By-Step. The plum tree is now surrounded by plenty of guild plants and you can see it in the image above. This year, there is only a single plum, but I hope it will establish and provide plenty more fruit over the coming years.

If you would like help choosing the right fruit trees for where you live, please do get in touch.

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