Stella Otto: The Backyard Fruit Gardener

Today's Tip: Mow vegetation short around the base of fruit trees and bushes to reduce winter habitat for rodents.

Category Archives: Soil

Soil Testing

Before apply­ing nutri­ents to your plant­ing site it is wise to know what nutri­ents are already present and avail­able in your soil. By test­ing the soil you can avoid spend­ing money on unneeded or incor­rect fer­til­iz­ers. Also, by avoid­ing over-application, you avoid min­eral leach­ing that con­tributes to ground water pol­lu­tion Soil test­ing is quite sim­ple. Samples […]

Soil Texture: a Quick Hands-on Test

The arti­cle on soils gives in-depth infor­ma­tion on soil prop­er­ties and soils best suited for the fruit gar­den. Here is a quick, handy, in the field “dirty thumbs” test to make an esti­ma­tion of your soil tex­ture. Take a wal­nut size scoop (a rough table­spoon) of soil. Mix with just enough water to hold together with­out leaving […]

Fruit Gardening — Is Your Soil Right for it?

Once you have made an assess­ment of the cli­matic con­di­tions your fruit trees and bushes may encounter in your loca­tion, another vital fac­tor to con­sider is the soil. Sev­eral char­ac­ter­is­tics of  your soil will have an influ­ence on the pro­duc­tive capac­ity of your fruit gar­den. They include soil type or tex­ture and pH: Tex­ture First, a […]