Square Foot Orchard

Whilst digging over the front of the plot I was coming upon loads of shattered glass.  There was far too much to dig out and clear so, after several trug fulls of shards and splinters, I decided that the only way of dealing with it was to plant up the area with perennial plants so that I wouldn’t have to dig in the area again.

When I was in London one of the plots near mine was known as “The Orchard” – it had 52 fruit trees as well as a lawn, pond seating area, sheds – despite that number of trees they were trained so that there was plenty of space.

Remembering this plot inspired me to experiment and plant out the square foot orchard.  I bought a number of cheap fruit trees from various budget stores.  In the end I bought 12 trees of different varieties:-

  • Elstar Apple
  • Jonagold Apple
  • Granny Smiths Apple
  • Coxs’ Orange Pipin Apple
  • Concorde Pear
  • Doyenne du Comice Pear
  • Victoria Plumb
  • Another Plumb
  • A Cherry

I planted these out VERY close together – they are 18 inches apart in the rows with the rows being 2 foot apart – hence the phase square foot orchard.

This was an experiment – having the trees so close together should help to curb their vigor and hopefully convince them that they need to fruit to survive.

mini orchard

So far they are growing healthily – Ive summer pruned them so that they develop into vertical cordons and will be looking to keep them 6 foot high.  One of the Jonagold had 3 fruit on it – I know, I should have removed them so that it could have concentrate on building it’s strength and structure but they were my first fruit.

mini orchard 2

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