Forget about the candy store — your kids will be begging for more time in your garden if you grow fruit!
Gardening in itself pays off since it provides you with a beautiful landscape to spend time in, but growing your own fruit takes that one step further, letting you taste your accomplishments! Plus, you can forget the candy store — your kids will be asking to spend more time in the yard picking their sweet treats! Even if you don’t have a large area to work with, you can still grow berries and other fruits in your backyard here in Bettendorf, Iowa.
Which Fruits Can Grow in Iowa?
Whether you eat berries straight from the plant or use them in jams, pies, or preserves, they are sure to be a welcoming addition to your garden.
Blueberries: Depending on the variety, blueberry bushes range in size and form — dwarf varieties can even be grown in containers. Blueberries can tolerate some shade, though produce best in full sun. They make beautiful landscape bushes since they offer something in every season: white flowers in spring, the bluest berries, and glossy green leaves in summer, colorful foliage in fall, and twiggy branches that add interest in winter. In addition to their slightly sweet taste, these juicy berries are called a superfood for their many health benefits, including being a source of vitamin C, fiber, and phytonutrients that function as antioxidants.
Raspberries: One of the first berries to ripen, raspberries can continue producing all summer long or provide a second harvest late in the season, depending on the variety. Some varieties have the classic red berries, while others produce yellow, purple, or black berries. Though raspberry bushes require pruning, they are overall low maintenance. Like blueberries, raspberries can handle a bit of shade. Every part of a raspberry has something to offer to you, besides their delicious taste. The berries are high in fiber and contain vitamin A, the juice has vitamin C, and the tiny seeds provide you with vitamin E.
Strawberries: In general, this sweet fruit can be put into one of two categories: June-bearing, which produce a ton of berries at once during the month of June, or ever-bearing, which provide smaller harvests throughout the summer. While you can create a small-scale strawberry field in your yard, the plants also do great in containers, like hanging baskets, which is perfect if you are tight on space. Strawberries need between six and 10 hours of direct sunlight. They are jam-packed with vitamin C, fiber, and antioxidants. For the perfect end to a summer meal, try making Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble!
Fruit Trees: Apples, pears, cherries, peaches and plums are all options for your Iowa fruit garden. For apples and pears to produce, you’ll need at least two varieties of each tree so they can be cross-pollinated. The same goes for some cherries, but some are self-fruitful, meaning a single tree will bear fruit. Though it can take a few years for fruit trees to produce, it is well worth it. They’ll provide beauty and tasty treats for years to come. If you’re worried about space, consider dwarf varieties of fruit trees. They are more compact, require less maintenance, and will bear fruit sooner than full-size trees. Most of Wallace’s fruit trees are dwarf or semi-dwarf trees.
Nothing says summertime like a handful of berries
or a bite from a freshly harvested apple!
Growing berries and fruit trees in your yard just keeps on giving back — you’ll have fresh fruit each year, you can make preserves all while adding beauty to your landscape. If you have questions about growing fruit in your backyard, contact us or stop by our garden center.