Friday, 18 July 2014

Growing fruit in small gardens [7]

7] Fruit with the flowers…..
Many years ago of course it was commonplace in Cottagers gardens to simply muddle everything in together. Fruit, vegetables, herbs and flowers for cutting all mingled happily together. Then tastes changed to a more segregated approach to gardening, yet now it is proved once again that everything has a cycle. The constraints of modern urbanized gardening mean that once again the fruit must muck in with the flowers.
Happily it’s actually quite a practical method of growing. So many of our fruiting plants and trees have their own innate beauty, that they don’t look out of place in the flower border at all. There are even benefits because the surrounding flowers attract pollinating insects which will in turn increase the productivy and quality of your harvest.
Small fruit trees are, as discussed previously, easily accommodated in a flower border. They don’t cast a lot of shade and can be underplanted with smaller, shallow rooted subjects. Or you could try the columnar system, these elegant upright trees cast little or no shade and have small root systems. I think they look quite elegant and the value of the vertical accent can never be underestimated in a border.
More fruits that are attractive anyway that are particularly suitable include Blueberries, Cranberry, Strawberries, Kiwi and grape vines up the pergola, Quince and Medlar trees and Japanese Wineberries.
Strawberries can be simply allowed to meander beneath shrubs and small trees.
Photo: The Japanese Wineberry

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