I worked outside yesterday rearranging my raised beds and cleaning up the yard in anticipation for Spring planting. Last year I had my beds in a straight line, which worked fine but it was not very interesting. I bought another bed this year so in order to incorporate it into my garden scheme I needed to make some changes. I wanted a design that would be visually pleasing but also a design that would allow me to add more beds in the future. I settled on this design. That way I can walk around each bed and inspect the plants easily for pests and pick the vegetables rather easily. In the future when I have more beds to add this setup will allow me to add another three beds, which is fantastic. I will most likely go to the nursery this weekend and get my soil and amendments, I can’t wait.
The empty space along the fence in the picture is where I plan to put the kids pizza garden, the strawberry patch and the dwarf pear tree. The two cement pillars in the picture are about five feet apart and stand around 6 feet high. I will plant the pear tree between these pillars and use them as the espalier support.
In planning my garden this year I have decided I’m going to try my hand at Dwarf Fruit Bearing Plants. I recently purchased a Dwarf Fig Tree and a Dwarf Lemon Tree. Both of these can be grown and maintained in a vessel that is able to be moved when the weather turns cold. I also invested in a Dwarf Blueberry Bush. I’m really excited to learn how to maintain these plants. Upon searching for information on dwarf plants I came across the website Dwarf Fruit Trees For Beginners An Orchard In Your Back Garden. It appears to be a good resource and I plan to take full advantage of it.
Apparently you can train fruit trees to grow like this. It’s a technique called Espalier and you can actually buy Espalier Trained Fruit Trees if you’d rather not train them yourself. When you prune a fruit bearing tree this way it allows you to get to the fruit ontop. It also is a way to save space in your yard. And because the fruit is spread out in this fashion the sun is able to reach the fruit more effectively thus creating larger and juicier fruit. I find it fascinatingly beautiful and I’m excited to try my hand at this technique.