With many gardeners forced to integrate their fruiting plants into the mixed border, amongst other ornamentals and salads, here is a useful list of the most good-looking fruitful additions for your garden.
Belonging to the ericaceous family of Vaccinium, these have on occasion been planted purely for their looks alone. The drooping Lily-of-the-valley like pearlescent bell flowers are a picture. But the main attraction is the fantastic autumn foliage finery – all burning reds, flame orange, coral pink and gold. Handily sized bushes reach around 4-6’ in height, quite slowly, and usually yield within 2 seasons. Make sure they get an acid soil or grow them in pots on the patio. Also ideal for growing amongst Rhododendrons & Azaleas.
2] Japanese Wineberry
A most beautiful wall shrub in the Blackberry family, but you would hardly guess it. The deeply veined lime green leaves are nice enough and turn to gold in the Autumn; but it is the stems - densely fuzzy with brilliant red bristles – that really set it apart, shining in the sunlight, come summer or winter. The vermillion berries ripen in late July and it has been recommended that they be served with a sprinkling of red wine for a decadent tea-time treat! Also makes fine jellies; this is a climbing plant best with the support of a wall [any aspect, this is an easy to grow treat] or a post.
3] Apples – Red Falstaff/Arthur Turner.
Apple blossom is a quintessentially lovely and romantic springtime vision of softly scented romance. We couldn’t choose between these two varieties because both have exagerated rose-pink colouring to the the flowers, which also appear larger than normal. So if you want apple-blossom in your garden, Red Flastaff and Arthur Turner are the ones for you. Red Falstaff also has very bright red fruits too – rather nice hanging from the tree!
4] Pear Sensation
A Pear tree distinguished not only by it’s fantastic ruby red skin finish, the leaves too are typically a coppery red, making this a very fine looking tree. If you haven’t the space for a full grown Pear tree grow it as a column, or against a wall as a fan or espalier.
5] Grape Vine ‘Brandt’
Grapes are nice-enough to look at anyway and are a first-choice climbing plant for arbour, sunny fence, or archway. What sets ‘Brandt’ apart is the reliable brilliance of it’s shining claret and purple Autumn foliage finery. It’s bunches of purple grapes are reliably set and tasty too. Any sunny spot suffices; Did you know Grapes can also be grown in large tubs and kept pruned.