Home Forums Miscellaneous General Banter Starting Small Orchard???

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  • livetofish
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    I’m going to be starting a small orchard, apples, pears, peaches, apricots, cherries… and was wondering the best place to get the trees? I was thinking Arbor Day Foundation as they’re the best priced, and supporting a good cause. I will be planting the trees south of Norwalk on an acreage.

    I also would like to get a bunch of asparagus and berry type plants going(any suggestions on where to get them)?

    oldstylelight
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    gurneys has everything, but might be expensive. sounds like it’ll be a lot of work. you will have an abundance of fruit unless you plan on taking a lot of time to can, etc or sell ?

    take time and do your research on plants…. soil conditions…. etc will pay in the end.

    good luck , sounds like fun.

    bowmaker
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    If you want a lot of trees and good production with in a reasonable time, I would steer you away from the Arbor Day Foundation. Every thing you get from them will be bare root and 10 to 12 inches tall and will take a very long time to mature and bear fruit and the survival rate is kind of low. I have about 30 apple trees that I have purchased over the years from places like Menard’s, Walmart, K-Mart and such. They are usually on sale for around $20 a piece and are potted and 5 or 6 ft tall. Even with these and a fair amount of fertilizer it usually takes 4 or 5 years before they produce fruit. I have a variety of trees that produce from late July clear through freeze up in November. Buy a good variety with at least 2 or 3 of each variety for proper pollination, and spread them out so you aren’t over whelmed all at once. There is also a commercial orchard in Oregon, I think, called Bear Creek that sells all varieties including many of the older varieties. You should be able to find on the internet or you might visit some of the local orchards because they many times bud and start their own trees.

    TeamAsgrow
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    I just got the Gurneys catalog last month and they had a bunch of specials on berry bushes and asparagus I think, something like buy some get some free. Worth looking into

    mothernatureson
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    I have a small backyard orchard of dwarf fruit trees. For best success , I would stay away from the big box garden centers for trees. I do buy vegetable plants from local lots however. Stark Brothers Nursery located in Mo. is a good place for quality trees. They have all sizes, dwarf, semi-dwarf and standard. Depending of how much area you have available. Their quality is good, and have competitive prices, and always have many varieties on sale. I dont have their number, but they have a website. they have a good catalog. Its a big investment in time and money, the deer and rabbits will wreak havoc, beware! Use tree wrap or guards on the trunks of the smaller tender plantings. Good luck!
    mothernatureson

    phaffy12
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    Finally a question where my horticulture degree is actually useful! Peaches are notorious for not producing well in Iowa. They are marginally cold tolerant in Iowa, meaning that the tree will generally survive the winter, but the flower buds will not. If you really want peaches, look for highly cold tolerant varieties (look at independent sources, not the tag that the person selling it put on the tree). With apricots, you should look for cold tolerant varieties as well, but their flower buds tend to be a little hardier than peaches. Apple trees of a certain variety generally cannot pollinate themselves. Pick out the varieties that you would like and then use a pollination chart like this one to make sure they will pollinate each other http://www.fruit-tree.com/applepollen.html. I have a more detailed/better pollination chart somewhere. If I can find it, I’ll scan it and post it up. As far as sources for material, generally local nurseries have higher quality material than mail order or big box stores, but you will pay a premium for it.

    ducktug
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    Try Nature Hills in Omaha here’s the web page http://www.naturehills.com/catalog/fruit_trees.aspx

    vettefanatic
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    Well I’m jelouse! We moved out to an acrege a year ago and I also plan putting an orchard in with the fruits, berries and grapes and nuts. But I have to wait another year or 2. Any way I planned on putting up a fence around all of it for the deer(.6 acres). I’ve done a lot of research and also like Stark Bros. I’ve gotten blue berries from Miller nurseries out of Michigan and their stock seems good. You can plant your peach trees in the middle of evergreens to help protect them. I’ve bought a book called Growing Fruit in the Upper Midwest that is very helpful. It tells of the different varieties and where to grow them. Even more broken down than the 4 or 5 zones. You can find it on amazon. Lastly don’t start out with too much, as it will take a bunch of time to start out your investment right. Good Luck!

    Backlash
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    I planted 2 pear trees last year and can’t wait till they start to produce. there is a guy a couple blocks from my house that has 2 dwarf pear trees that are loaded every year. They even end up with broken branches because of the fruit load.

    cyclones30
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    I’ll throw my vote in for Sherman Nursery out of Charles City. Always had good luck with them in the past and you can see what they have in stock or call them for other questions. http://www.shermannursery.com/

    sonar83
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    I ordered two trees from gurneys and am going to plant them this spring. i hope they make it…….. Ihave the cyclone fence to put around them to keep the deer off of them.

    IowaDuckHunter
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    I buy a lot of trees every year for my place of business and if you can get trees from Shermans in Charles City they are some of the best root stock available.

    IowaDuckHunter

    Ackley
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    Good thread. I just bought two apple trees last week, honeycrisp & Jonathon, at Earl May. They may be higher priced than other places but I heard good things about their stock. I also plan on buying 2 pear trees. Does anyone have any idea on good varieties to get?

    My main concern for my trees are the old walnut trees. Last week I cut down 10 junk trees to make room for my future orchard. They were trees that grew up wild in an old hedge. Several were walnut trees. I plan on planting my fruit trees 10 to 15 foot away from the old stumps but I heard that walnut trees are bad on apple trees even after they have been cut. Any expertise out there.

    Anonymous
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    Hey Whats a cyclone fence? I have a ton of deer here and they mow down just about all plants. Not sure if apple trees would survive. I think I might plant a few just to try it. I have about an acre. Any advise would be welcome.

    Dmac

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