When my first child had an accident at home, I realised we hadn't childproofed the house as well as we could have. Thankfully, they were fine, but I learned my lesson and began a thorough inspection of my home and garden. I got to work addressing the various hazards we had overlooked, and I started this blog to help other parents think objectively about the hazards in their own homes. I post about a variety of topics, such as pool safety, choosing a safe garden fence, storing medication and cleaning products, window and door locks and kitchen safety for kids. I hope you find my blog useful and informative.
If you are considering adding ornamental trees to your garden, you might want to consider growing an apricot tree. This will provide an attractive and interesting addition to your garden that will also provide you with an abundant crop of tasty fruit. So what's involved?
Apricot trees are quick to grow and very hardy in most climates, usually reaching a height of around 3 metres. They are simple to grow and care for, making them an ideal choice for the novice gardener. As well as the fruit to enjoy, the trees produce a flush of pale pink blossoms during the spring.
Planting and growing your apricot tree
When you plant your tree, you'll need to cut back the main stem. This encourages side shoots to grow, encouraging the tree to bush-out into a more attractive shape and making it easier to harvest the fruit. During the first couple of years, prune out any vertically growing branches and any that are rubbing together. This helps to prevent disease from entering the tree and keeps it healthy.
You can plant your apricot tree in the autumn or winter into a free-draining soil. To give the tree a good start, add sand or fine gravel to the soil if it's heavy and fork in a good helping of organic matter such as mulch or farmyard manure.
As the tree becomes established, look out for suckers emerging from the roots. Suckers look like spindly twigs and should be pruned off as soon as they appear to prevent the tree being deprived of nutrients.
Apricot trees typically begin to bear fruit when they get to three years of age or older. The older your tree is, the more fruit it will produce. There's no need to thin the fruits; just leave them to form and develop naturally. Keep your tree well watered during the summer when the fruits begin to swell. As soon as the fruits turn pale orangey-pink in colour and easily come off the tree, they are ripe and ready to harvest. Apricots don't ripen well if picked too early, so try to resist the temptation!
Apricot trees make a lovely addition to any garden, providing a display of blossom during the spring and a crop of delicious fruit at the end of the summer. For more information and advice and to see what varieties of apricot trees are available, why not pay a visit to your local plant wholesaler?