Fruit Trees For Boston

marc00(6 Boston)September 27, 2008

Hi All,

I'm looking for opinions on the best fruit trees to plant in the Boston area. I'm new to fruit trees and I would like to plant one for each of my two kids. Fruit production and hardiness are the primary considerations. I live close to the coast, probably a warm zone 6 give or take a few micro climates! Any thoughts?

Thanks!

Marc

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turtleman49(AZ)

Theres hundereds of types you can have there.. so let me ask you this..

What type of fruit do you and your kids like?

I'll make you a list with the rootstocks that are best for your area

    Bookmark   September 28, 2008 at 8:49AM
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theaceofspades(7 Long Island)

marc, Asian Pears are the easiest best fruit tree to grow for kids. You can grow Asians WITHOUT SPRAY whereas you would need 5 sprays for peaches, plums, apricots, cherries. Pears don't get borers or Japanese beatles. Squirels and birds don't bother my Asians but totally ruin the apricots, plums and peaches. Asians pears store for months while plums apricots peaches just a week or two. Unlike european pears and most apples, asian pears don't need storage to obtain full flavor, you just pick asians off the tree to enjoy. I have Fuji apples that are among the best variety in the world but I prefer asian pears. Fuji's are delicious complex tangy sweet orangey flesh and store for months. Asians pears are crisp juicy sweet mild butterscotch non filling refreshing so I eat three at a time.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2008 at 10:19AM
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glenn_russell(6b RI)

Hi Marc-
Welcome to the Fruit and Orchard forum. I like the idea of Asian Pears enough that Im planting one myself this year.

If you do decide to go with apples, I really would recommend going with a "Disease Resistant" variety. If you want to make fruit growing one of your main hobbies, then yes, you can grow well known varieties, but be prepared that you will spend a lot of time spraying serious fungicides which are very difficult for the homeowner to obtain legally.

I think I may preach this a bit louder than the others, but, in my mind, DR apples are 50% easier to grow. IÂm just south of you in RI, and around here, youÂll need to deal with Apple Scab and Cedar Apple Rust as well as quite a few other diseases. If you just go to your local nursery, and pick up a Red Delicious, or some other well known apple, you will need to spray it almost constantly (with homeowner-available fungicides) around here to avoid the those diseases. For me, in RI, that meant 7-10 days... and even that, only solved the scab, while the rust reeked havoc with my trees.

HereÂs what I recommended to a friend of mine last year: He wanted 2 apple trees. I recommended Liberty and a Williams Pride which are both disease resistant. I have both, though the WP has not fruited yet.

When I went to a local orchard last week, I tried 9 varieties of apples. The Liberty tasted really great to me. For both my father and I, it was in 1st place until the end of the tour when we tried an Empire. I took me 4 apples (2 Liberty, 2 Empire) to determine that I liked the Empire just slightly more, but only slightly. But, the big thing here is Liberty is DR and Empire isnÂt. So, IÂm still glad I have the Liberty. Liberty is still at harvest time now for another 2 days (possible a little longer since youÂre north of me). If you act fast, you might be able to try one at your local orchard.

I still havenÂt tried my Williams Pride, but it has a couple of nice qualities: 1.) ItÂs extremely DR (I havenÂt sprayed my tree at all zero, zilch, nada, and it probably looks better than any of my other trees). 2.) It is a very early variety (ripening in mid July around here I believe), so you will spread your harvest out which I like to do. 3.) Some might argue that early apples in general donÂt taste as good, but if you search this forum, youÂll find many accounts of it tasting better than many of the fall apples.

Then thereÂs the issue of insects. You will need to deal with Plum Curculio and Apple Maggot fly. Unfortunately, DR canÂt really help with that. But, with just two trees, you can "bag" your apples. Do a search on this forum about bagging your apples, and youÂll find a lot of great info.

If you were to decided to go with just 1 apple tree, make sure you have something to pollinate it nearby, or you wonÂt get any fruit. Either a neighbor with another apple tree, or a crab apple nearby.

Finally, If your looking for a source, Google "Adams County Nursery" and "Cummins Nursery". The tree will come as "bare root", and it will probably take you 3 years or so to get your first couple apples. Or, if you decide that you would like a mature espaliered Liberty, then there is a place down here in RI that has one.

Good luck!
-Glenn

    Bookmark   September 28, 2008 at 1:10PM
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