Friday, August 27, 2010

fruit for the edible landscape

When talking edible landscapes, vegetables are often at the front of our minds, while fruits take the back seat. Maybe it's because there are just so many vegetables we can grow here, or that they're relatively easy to grow, or that they're low commitment because they're generally only around for one season. Fruits are generally perennial, and many are in the form of trees, shrubs or vines, which makes them great to use in the landscape for structure and a sense of permanence. Fruit plants can also provide stunning color. Did you know the foliage on blueberry bushes turns a deep crimson in autumn?

Photo courtesy of University of Minnesota Extension.
You might be thinking that it's just too cold here in Minnesota to grow fruit, and for some varieties that is very true. We won't be growing bananas or peaches here any time soon. (Well, I'm keeping my hopes up on the peaches.) But...did you know we can grow grapes, plums, cherries, and even a type of kiwi? There's a great range of fruit we can grow in Minnesota, and thanks to the trusty and talented plant breeders here at the U of M, many varieties have been developed just for us. How great is that? Check out these links to learn about the best fruit varieties to grow in Minnesota.

Selected fruit varieties for Minnesota gardens
Stone fruits
Currants and gooseberries
Hardy kiwifruit

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