Grow Your Own Miniature Fruit Trees
Growing tropical fruit trees is a rewarding experience for any aspiring gardener. They provide delicious, succulent fruits every year with minimal upkeep, and look great at the same time! As transportation prices rise, it becomes more and more economically sensible to grow our own fruits and vegetables. But, if you do not have the space to plant an orchard, you may have dismissed the idea of fruit trees out of hand.
The good news is that horticulture is a marvelous field, and there's almost nothing it can't do with plants. Which is why a growing number of people are purchasing dwarf fruit trees- plants that can fit on your patio or in your home while still producing copious amounts of fruit. Even during the off-season, their lush foliage makes for an attractive house or patio plant- they keep their leaves year round! These trees make wonderful gifts and are also valuable to those in colder climes; by keeping the trees inside, they remain within the temperature range tropical plants require to thrive. As a general rule, they get to be no more than 3' in height, although some varieties will grow up to 4' if planted outdoors and given plenty of nutrients.
The trees need a light soil with good drainage to grow well. This means avoiding heavy soils meant for indoor use, or soils heavy in substances like peat moss. Fertilize gently so as to avoid burning the roots, and keep the soil moist but not wet. It's very important not to overwater citrus plants. You will wind up watering it heavily about once a week, and spraying it with water every few days to feed its love for humidity. Room temperature should be sufficient for growth. This website has good, detailed advice about keeping potted citrus trees happy, should you decide to purchase some.
The biggest challenge, as with most plants, is providing enough light. Most fruit trees require at least eight hours of full sunlight to bear fruit. This can be difficult in the winter months, but grow light systems are available to boost your plants' intake.
Make sure to buy from a reputable dealer every time you purchase plants online. There is nothing more disappointing than receiving a beautiful young tree in the mail, only to have it wither away in a week from shock. Most nurseries know how to ship a plant safely, but there may be an initial period where your plant dies off a bit before bouncing back. It's normal!
Dwarf trees of good stock and with sufficient light will produce anywhere from 1/2 to 2/3 the output of a full-sized tree. Fruit may be slightly smaller, but is often just as large as the kind in the supermarket. To determine ripeness, simply pick a fruit and check.
If you're looking for an elegant plant with the added benefit of fruit production every year, but have property restrictions preventing a fully grown tree, then dwarf fruit trees may be the way to go. There are many types available. Oranges, lemons, and limes are the most common, but you can also purchase bananas, pineapples, blueberries, figs, pomegranates, and avocados. With such a wide variety available, there's something to appeal to all tastes!
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