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Day 1: Resources for Growing Fruit Trees

31 Days of Living Homegrown

This post is part of the 31 Days of Living Homegrown. Sign up for my newsletter (weekly or monthly) so you don’t miss any of the inspiration and resources I will be sharing for living local, fresh and homegrown!

Day 1:

As I write this post, I am sitting by the fire in the log cabin next to my family’s farmstead in Northern California. I have been spending a lot of weekends here over the last few months working on the heirloom fruit orchard. It is cold and crisp outside (snow is on the way) and I am mapping out where we will be placing some new fruit trees in the orchard.

Oh, I know what you are thinking, “What? MORE fruit trees?”

Well, yes. More fruit trees. We are going to be making cider and numerous canned goods in the upcoming years and we needed a few things to balance out what we already have here. But I will give more details on all of that in an upcoming post.

In the meantime, I wanted to share several great resources I have been using for my mini-orchard adventure.

Resources for backyard fruit growing

If you have fruit trees or are thinking of adding some to your backyard, these organizations are a great place to go for information and help. Although some are listed as California resources, they also have general growing information that would be useful no matter where you live.

And if you are needing to order any fruit trees (especially heirloom trees) the companies below are also extremely knowledgeable, reliable and helpful.

Other Resources for fruit tree growing:

Do you have any backyard orchard resources or information to share? Is so, please share in the comments. We can all learn from each other!

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About the Author:

Theresa Loe is the founder of Living Homegrown® and the Canning Academy® and is the Co-Executive Producer & Canning Expert on the national PBS gardening series, Growing A Greener World®. Theresa homesteads on just 1/10th of an acre in Los Angeles with her husband, two teenage boys and several disorderly but totally adorable chickens. Learn more about Living Homegrown here and about the Canning Academy here.


  • TeresaR says:

    My guys (hubby and kids) are eager to plant more trees this year. Hubby had repopulated our property, which was mostly farmland, with a lot of trees, but we’re always interested in fruit trees which haven’t done as well here. We think it’s partly due to the abundance of black walnut trees on our land. My older son, too, has gotten into trees obsessively since this past summer and is into propagating native (to this area) and/or rare (but still native to North America) trees.

    I’ll pass along this post to them to consult with. Thank!

    And Happy New Year to you and your family!

  • We are doing the same thing! (Fireside, plotting, planning, planting). Last year we had to scrap our old, scraggly orchard in favor of a new pond for secondary irrigation (and now have great wood for smoking/grilling). This week we have planted peaches, plums, figs, blackberries, blueberries…and I can finally enjoy them in the ground instead of in acres of pots on the nursery! 🙂

    • theresa says:

      Fantastic Mary Beth. You have been busy! There is something about planning in winter that is so satisfying. I have never been able to do it before. I live in Los Angeles and really never get “winter”. But when I visit the farmstead up north, it is very wintery and I love planning by the fire!

  • Robin says:

    I just found your blog and had to smile at this post. We’ve been thinking and planning for more fruit, too. We finally planted a few cherry trees this year. Hopefully they’ll take off and we can plant a few other things. I look forward to going through your archives to see what I can learn.

  • Lily says:

    Like Teresa I have never been able to grow fruit trees. I do have lots of black walnut trees on my property, but I never thought that could be the reason. Very interesting! You have inspired me to try again. This time I will try to plant trees that are native to this area.Thanks for all the info!

  • PL C says:

    A local resource for me in Nevada County is the Western Nevada County Growing Guide, (All About Gardening in the Sierra Foothills) revised in 2010, by our Master Gardeners. It has specific local recommendations of what thrives best at our elevations and soils, and timetables for planting, pest control and harvesting. Beyond vegetables, it teaches about orchards, raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, grapes and roses. Perhaps Placer County has a similar guide. It’s been both inspiring and helpful to me. And, though we lost our Master Preserver years ago, we now have a new, young Master giving back to our community.

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