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LH 103: Growing Uncommon Fruits in Your Backyard

How to grow unusual fruits in your own backyard

It doesn’t matter if you are looking for something new to add to your current garden or you’re just getting started with fruit growing – Today’s episode will give some inspiring ideas for growing fruit like a master gardener.

I brought back author Dr. Lee Reich to share tips for growing some of the more unusual fruits such as juneberries and pawpaws.

Lee was on episode #97 (How to Grow Blueberries) and this time, he tells us how to grow fruits that probably no one else in your neighborhood will have.


You will learn:

  • How Lee uses his backyard as his fruit laboratory
  • Which kiwi is hardy – even in New York
  • The benefits of growing juneberries
  • What is a lingonberry
  • Why only need a few pawpaws
  • How Asian pears ripen differently than European pears
  • Which American Persimmon has the best flavor
  • And so much more


Lee Reich:

Lee Reich, PhD dove into gardening over 40 years ago with one foot in academia (as an agricultural scientist with the USDA and Cornell University) and one foot in the field…the organic field.

He eventually expanded his field to a farmden (more than a garden, but less than than a farm) and left academia to lecture, consult, and and write.

He is the author a number of books (A Northeast Gardener’s Year, Uncommon Fruits for Every Garden, The Pruning Book, Weedless Gardening, Landscaping with Fruit, and Grow Fruit Naturally), and his syndicated column for Associated Press appears bimonthly in newspapers from coast to coast.

His farmden has been featured in Martha Stewart Living and The New York Times as well as our PBS television series, Growing A Greener World.

Besides providing a year ‘round supply of fruits and vegetables, Lee’s farmden has an educational mission. He considers it a test site for innovative techniques in soil care, pruning, and food production.

Science and an appreciation of natural systems underpin his work. His goal is to get more people, whether in backyards or small farms, to grow more food sustainably and organically.


Resources & Links Mentioned:

Lee’s Website

Grow Fruit Naturally by Lee Reich

Uncommon Fruits for Every Garden by Lee Reich

Landscaping with Fruit by Lee Reich



Click here for the full transcript for Episode #103

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About the Author:

Theresa Loe is the founder of Living Homegrown® and the Canning Academy®. For 9 years, Theresa was 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 sons and several disorderly but totally adorable chickens. Learn more about Living Homegrown here and about the Canning Academy here.