You don’t need a big garden to grow your own fruit, just a pot on a sunny patio or balcony. Choose the right plants, follow a few simple steps, and you’ll soon be enjoying delicious harvests of your own fresh-picked fruit.
Growing strawberries in pots
Strawberries grow well in pots and even in hanging baskets, with pretty white or pink flowers in spring and delicious red fruits in summer. Planting them in hanging baskets also means they’re safe from slugs and snails, although not necessarily from other hungry garden wildlife such as squirrels and birds!
- Choose a pot or basket with good drainage, place in a sunny position and fill it with multi-purpose compost.
- Space the plants around 25-30cm (10-12in) apart.
- Water regularly and feed fortnightly with a high potash feed once the flowers appear.
- Cut off the runners in autumn.
Growing blueberries in pots
Because blueberries will only grow well in acidic soils, it’s often easiest to grow them in containers. Choose a compact variety like ‘Bluecrop’ or ‘Bluegold’, and, if you have space, plant two different varieties, as cross-pollination will produce bigger fruit.
- Start plants out in a 30cm diameter pot filled with ericaceous compost, then repot into a larger container when necessary.
- Water with rainwater whenever possible, as tap water will make the compost more alkaline, especially in areas with hard water.
- Feed monthly with a liquid fertiliser suitable for ericaceous plants.
- Net the bushes once the fruit starts to ripen to protect it from birds.
Growing apple trees in pots
Yes, it is possible to grow an apple tree on your patio or balcony. Look for trees grown on dwarf rootstocks (the M9 and M26 rootstocks are best for pots) and choose self-fertile varieties that can produce fruit without needing another apple tree nearby for pollination.
- Choose a pot around 45-50cm in diameter and fill it with loam-based compost like John Innes No. 3. Add a slow-release fertiliser to the compost mix before planting.
- Water your apple tree regularly.
- Replace the top 5cm (2in) of compost every year.
Growing fig trees in pots
Fig trees grow well in large pots, and with their attractive lobed leaves, they make excellent specimen plants and provide delicious fruit. Varieties like ‘Brunswick’ and ‘Brown Turkey’ are hardy and well suited to our temperate climate, fruiting reliably even in poor summers.
- Start small plants off in 30cm (12in) pots filled with a loam-based compost like John Innes No. 3 and re-pot into a slightly larger pot every two years. Place the pot in a sunny, sheltered spot.
- Water weekly during the growing season and feed fortnightly with a liquid high potash fertiliser such as tomato feed. Tiny fruitlets appear in late summer and will ripen the following year.
- Cover the tree with fleece in winter to protect it from frosts, or move the container into a frost-free greenhouse.
We have a fantastic range of fruit trees and bushes in the centre, so visit us today and get set for a delicious harvest!