FRUIT TREES and BUSHES

Besides the fun of growing your own fruit, and the saving in cost, there are two other reasons for devoting at least part of your garden to fruit bushes, and these should be taken into account when selecting varieties. First, the fruit sold in shops is from a few commercial varieties, where flavour is irrelevant. We all know those red apples and huge strawberries that look nice and taste of nothing. Secondly, many fruits need to be ripened on the tree, and eaten immediately (e.g., Worcester Pearmain, peaches and cherries and most plums), and this is not possible unless grown at home.

POLLINATION

Apples, pears, cherries and plums, unless stated to be self-fertile in the text, need another variety or varieties planted close to them to act as a pollinator. If you live in a big fruit growing area, or if your neighbours have fruit trees, you probably will not need them, but the better your pollination system, the bigger the yield will be. We have provided pollination information for your guidance when making your selection. Crab apples, the varieties John Downie and Golden Hornet, also make good pollinators for apples.

SPRAYING

Although this may sometimes seem rather a nuisance, it is necessary to do some spraying, at least in order to get top quality fruit. There is a wide range of very effective sprays to deal with the troubles to which fruit trees are subject and sprayers have been so improved that it is now comparatively easy to apply them. We carry good stocks of both sprays and sprayers, and our sales staff will be happy to advise and demonstrate as required.

PRUNING

Stakes and plastic ties (buckle type ties) are available on the Garden Centres. All half-standard trees should be securely staked at the time of planting.

APPLES

We now offer apple trees and bushes in the following forms.

1. As traditional bushes and cordons on MM 106; these are available from November through to March while stocks last. A limited range of container grown trees will be available throughout the year.

2. As half-standard trees also on MM 1 06, these are available from November as well. These are used where a stem is required, so that the grass below can be mown or grazed by animals. You will need a ladder to pick the fruit.

3. As espaliers. A limited range of trained apples are available from November until March. These are suitable for growing on walls or on post and wire supports, when they can make an attractive and useful barrier between the lawn, flower beds and the vegetable garden.

N.B. We no longer grow standard apples.

The importance of buying virus free bushes. We cannot over emphasise how important it is to buy apples that are on virus free stocks, and have been grafted with virus free scion wood. We take particular care to use virus-tested propagation wood whenever it is available, and all our stocks are now virus free.

Rootstocks. The following rootstocks are used in the propagation of our top fruit. Bush apples on M 26 and MM 1 06. M 26 is a dwarfing rootstock but is more vigorous than M 9, which we no longer use, and we feel it is more suitable for garden use. Trees grown on M 26 need not be staked though we consider it desirable to stake all trees when first planted. M 26 is a very good stock for growing cordon apples it is also relatively free from canker. MM 1 06 is a semi-vigorous rootstock, all our apple varieties are available on MM 106. Half-standard apples are also worked on MM 106 which produces a tree of medium vigour, suitable for orchard cultivation.

Pears are propagated on the vigorous Quince ‘A’ rootstock.

Plums are grown on St Julien ‘A’ which produces a semi-vigorous tree.

Cherries. We are at present changing over our cherry production on to Colt which is the first dwarfing rootstock for fruiting cherries.

Selection of varieties. We believe our range of apples includes the best of the old favourites and of the modern varieties.

Pollination information. Each variety is numbered, and the numbers after each variety denotes suitable pollinators.

Planting distances. Varieties on M 26 rootstock: cordons 2-3 ft, bushes 8-1 2 ft.

Varieties on MM 106: cordons 2-3 ft, bushes 16-18 ft, half-standards 25 ft, espaliers 16-18 ft

1 BRAMLEY’S SEEDLING (Culinary). A big green apple with a red flush. The most popular

and reliable culinary apple for most districts. It is a tip bearer, and so it should not be grown as an espalier or as a cordon. Growth is vigorous and spreading and it requires more room than most varieties. Vitamin content is higher than any other apple. Best with two pollinators. Season November-March. 2, 3, 10, 11, 13, 17.

2 CHARLES ROSS (Dessert or Culinary). One of the most handsome apples in existence.

Very large, of regular shape and with plenty of colour, it is the fruit exhibitor’s dream-come-true. The flavour is pleasant and crisp, though apt to vanish if kept too long. It makes a small bush, and crops heavily when young. Season October-December. 3, 5, 9, 10, 11. 13, 15, 17,

3 COX’S ORANGE PIPPIN (Dessert). The aristocrat of dessert apples. The flavour is unique

and most delicious, whilst the texture is crisp and juicy. Easily the favourite in eating apples, yet it does not do with everybody. Requires a well-drained not-too-heavy soil to thrive. Season November-March. Espalier. 4, 9, 10, 11, 17.

4 DISCOVERY (Dessert). The best new apple for a long time. Medium sized fruit, of

excellent colour, and ripening in August or September. Moreover, it is resistant to spring frost damage, and will grow in exposed places. Needs little spraying against disease, and does not need careful pruning. 3,7, 11, 17.

5 EARLY VICTORIA (Culinary). The first apple to pick for cooking. Smallish green apples

ripen in August (but not keeping long). Very hardy everywhere, and crops when young. 2, 9, 1 1, 13, 15.

6 EGREMONT RUSSET (Dessert). The best of this group, golden-yellow and covered with

russet. Easy to grow everywhere, and needs little pruning or spraying. Season October-December. 7,14,1 6.

7 FORTUNE (Dessert). Juicy, sweet and of good flavour. A good and regular cropper,

keeping very free from any disease. A variety we recommend very strongly. Season late September-October. Espalier. 3, 4, 6, 9, 14, 16.

8 GOLDEN DELICIOUS (Dessert). A yellow apple, of excellent flavour and firm, juicy

texture, and which keeps late. Flowers resistant to spring frost damage. A regular cropper. Season November-January. 9, 13.

9 GREENSLEEVES (Dessert). A new introduction and probably one of the easiest varieties to

grow. An English version of Golden Delicious. Produces heavy crops, even when young, of quality fruit with a delicious flavour. It is self-fertile and is an excellent pollinator for other varieties. A foolproof variety we highly recommend. Self-fertile. 3,7, 10, 11, 17.

10 GRENADIER (Culinary). A good quality early Cooking apple. A regular cropper, bearing large distinctive green apples even when young. A trouble free variety, hardy every­where. Season September. 3, 9, 11, 17.

1 1 JAMES GRIEVE (Dessert or Culinary). A heavy cropper, with conical crisp and juicy fruit, pale yellow with an orange flush and red stripes. Flowers somewhat resistant to spring frost damage. Season September-October. 3, 9, 11, 17.

1 2 JUPTER (Dessert). An exceptional crop of high quality fruit similar in flavour to Cox. Its ability to produce good crops of quality fruit with a superb flavour over a wide range of soil conditions will soon establish this apple as a favourite garden variety. Jupiter is recommended where Cox’s Orange Pippin does not flourish. Stores well. Requires two pollinators for the best crop. 4,8.9, 11.

1 3 LAXTON’S SUPERB (Dessert). An excellent variety, which is being widely grown where Cox does not do so well. The apples are well coloured, sweet and juicy and of low acid content. Prolific in fruiting, but with a tendency to be biennial. A good dessert apple for winter use. Season November-February. Self-fertile, but better with any of the following. 3, 8, 10, 1 1, 17.

1 4 LORD LAMBOURNE (Dessert). A cross between James Grieve and Worcester. A distinct flavour, and a fairly large apple for dessert. Season September-November. Self-fertile. 3, 6, 10, 11, 17.

15 NEWTON WONDER (Culinary or Dessert). Medium size and of regular, even shape. Very firm flesh, which keeps until late spring, when it can make quite a useful fruit for dessert use. A vigorous apple, cropping heavily, but with a tendency to be biennial. 3, 1 3.

1 6 REV. WILKES (Culinary). Very large handsome apples cover the small trees in August. Dwarf growth, and an easy variety for the amateur. 6, 7, 14.

1 7 WORCESTER PEARMAlN (Dessert). A sweet, colourful apple which is delicious (with a unique aroma and taste) when allowed to ripen on the tree, but is too often spoilt by being picked too early. A regular and prolific cropper, and it makes a good pollinator for Cox. Moreover, the flowers are resistant to spring frost damage, and it is a comparatively trouble free variety for the amateur anywhere. Season September. 3,4,9, 10, 11.

PEARS

Pears ripened on the tree are delicious. However, it may be necessary sometimes to ripen them by putting the fruit in artificial heat.

They are easy to grow, appreciate a deep soil, but tolerate moister conditions than apples.

We grow our bush pears on Quince A rootstock. Half-standards are budded onto pear seedling stocks for extra vigour.

Planting distances: Standards and half-standards 25-30 ft, bushes 18-24 ft, cordons 2-3 ft, trained 1 6-24 ft.

1 CONFERENCE. The best known and most popular pear. It is self-fertile, though it will

benefit if it has a pollinator. Sweet and juicy of good quality. Season October-March. Self-fertile. 4.

2 DOYENNE DU COMICE. Like Cox in apples. Cornice is the aristocrat in pears, having an

outstanding delicious flavour. But in the same way it does not thrive everywhere and needs a warm well drained soil to do well. Then it is superb. Best planted with both Conference and Louise Bonne as pollinators. Season November. 1,3.

3 LOUISE BONNE DE JERSEY. A medium sized conical pear of very high quality. Very

fertile and highly recommended. Season October. 2.

4 WILLIAMS’ BON CHRETIEN. One of our most popular pears, large, of good flavour, and

very juicy. This sort has been grown for nearly 200 years, and is still probably the best of the early varieties. Season late August-September. 1,2.

PLUMS and DAMSONS

Plums are one of the easiest fruits to grow and will give a good crop a few summers after planting. They need little pruning apart from removing unwanted branches during the summer. Some varieties are shown as self-fertile – others need pollinators as indicated by numbers before and after the names.

Plums are available as young trees from September onwards (container grown) or as 2 year bushes or half-standards from late October onwards. Standards with 5-6 ft stems are useful for planting where grazing will take place, and are also available from late October.

Planting distances: Standards and half-standards 20 ft, bushes 15 ft, fan-trained 20 ft.

1 CZAR (Culinary). Good crops of medium sized plums, purple in colour. An excellent

variety for cooking and preserving. Season August. Self-fertile.

2 DENNISTON’S SUPERB (Dessert). A large yellow plum with rich gage flavour. Reliable

cropper and one of the best for flavour. Season August. Self-fertile.

3 EARLY PROLIFIC (RIVER’S) (Culinary). A small dark purple plum, always in good

demand. An excellent variety for cooking and bottling. Season end of July. 8, 10.

4 GREENGAGE (Dessert). Green with red dots. Very rich flavour, but an irregular cropper.

Season late August. 8, 10.

5 MARJORIES SEEDLING (Dessert and Culinary). Bluish-black, large and a heavy cropper.

An excellent variety which has taken a foremost position among plums. Season late September. Self-fertile.

6 MERRYWEATHER (DAMSON). The largest damson, like a small black plum, but with the

real damson flavour. Free cropping and self-fertile. Season September-October.

7 OULLINS GOLDEN GAGE (Dessert). Large fruits, round and yellow with a fairly sweet

flavour. Robust grower. Season August. Self-fertile.

8 PERSHORE (YELLOW EGG PLUM) (Culinary). A tremendous cropper and a plum which is

excellent for bottling and jam-making. Season late August. Self-fertile.

9 SHROPSHIRE PRUNE (DAMSON). Very old established variety producing good crops of

large fruit. Season September. Self-fertile. 10 VICTORIA (Dessert and Culinary). Red and yellow. Easily the best general purpose plum being good for dessert and cooking, bottling and jam-making. Season late August. Self-fertile.

CHERRIES

Cherries are best grown as fan-trained trees against a wall, where they can be more easily protected against birds. Available as bushes, half-standards and fan-trained, from late October onwards.

Morello and limited stocks of Stella will be available as container-grown Maidens from September onwards.

1 EARLY RIVERS. Large black fruit of excellent quality if left to ripen on the trees. Vigorous.

Early June. 2,3.

2 MERTON HEART. Very large, dark red fruit. Season mid-June. 1,

3 MORELLO. Dark red, and black when fully ripe. It has an acid flavour and is excellent for

bottling and jam-making. It is self-fertile and an abundant cropper. Fan-trained trees can be grown on a north wall with success. August-September. Self-fertile and will pollinate. 1. 2.

4 STELLA. A new self-fertile, sweet cherry. Dark red fruit.

PEACHES, NECTARINES and APRICOTS

Peaches, nectarines and apricots are one of our specialities, and each year we supply large quantities of top quality trees. We have many satisfied customers who tell us they have picked superb quality fruit two years after planting.

If you have had difficulty in establishing any of these in the past, try our container-grown Maiden plants available from September, which are suitable for you to train against a wall, or grow into bushes. Otherwise, bushes and fan-trained trees will be available from late October.

All peaches should be sprayed each year with Bordeaux mixture or lime sulphur to control peach leaf curl. Two sprays should be given at fourteen-day intervals starting in mid-February. Failure to spray every year can otherwise cause considerable disfigurement of the foliage which can lead to poor growth and non-fruiting of the trees.

When grown outside, peaches, nectarines and apricots are self-fertile.

Planting distances: Bushes 15 ft, fan-trained 15-20 ft.

PEACHES

DUKE OF YORK. A large, juicy peach of excellent colour and taste. Early August. PEREGRINE. White flesh with red flushes. Exceptionally good flavour (far better than the

imported peaches) especially when allowed to ripen on the bush. Very prolific, and

probably the best peach to grow in Britain. August.

NECTARINES

LORD NAPIER. Pale yellow with deep crimson flush. Rich flavour. Early August. PINEAPPLE. Large, deep orange with crimson cheek. The richest flavoured nectarine with melting golden fJesh. Early September.

APRICOTS

MOOR PARK. The best-known variety with large round orange fruit of good flavour. Vigorous. Early August.

FIGS

These must have a warm sheltered position to fruit well. A south or west wall is ideal. To encourage fruiting the root growth should be restricted, a paving slab placed at the base of the planting hole will prevent the formation of a tap root. Do not add manure when planting as this encourages strong lush growth at the expense of fruiting.

Figs fruit well in tubs or when grown indoors. Our young pot grown plants are suitable for training.

BROWN TURKEY. The best outdoor variety, producing large, red-fleshed fruit which is very sweet. Pot-grown plants supplied.

GRAPE VINES

Vines can be grown out of doors in England, and will give a good crop of fruit in a normal season, especially if grown on a south facing wall. They are quite hardy when established and are available as strong pot-grown canes all the year round. An ideal time to plant is September-October.

Varieties suitable for wine-making if grown outdoors, or for dessert if grown in cold glasshouse. These are all grafted onto a disease-resistant rootstock.

MULLER-THURGAU. Muller-Thurgau is the most widely planted vine in Germany and England.

It ripens early to mid-October and produces a good quality muscat flavoured wine in

England that may be said to resemble the German hocks from Rheinhessen. Long cane

pruning is to be recommended. REICHENSTEINER. A new variety that is particularly resistant to botrytis. It yields well, giving

a full bodied harmonious wine of good quality.

N.B. All the above varieties are suitable for growing in greenhouses, etc., to produce excellent fruit for dessert purposes.

Varieties which should be grown in a cold glasshouse to ripen properly, except in very favoured sites.

BLACK HAMBURG. A well-known black grape of superb flavour.

MUSCAT OF ALEXANDRIA. Pale green to amber, rich muscat flavour.

ROYAL MUSCADINE. Early ripening medium sized berries, amber-coloured, juicy, of muscat

flavour. STRAWBERRY GRAPE. Medium sized rose coloured berries of sweet ‘strawberry’ flavour.

MEDLARS

NOTTINGHAM. The unusual fruit, produced after a few years, should be picked in November and stored in a cool airy place for 3-4 weeks. Use it for a different dessert, or for a jelly with game (it is not unlike guava in flavour). Apart from its fruit, it is also a pretty little tree, in flower and in the autumn. Trees available from late October.

MULBERRIES

We offer the genuine fruiting Black Mulberry, which starts producing its fruit in quantity after about 10 years. Ideal for jam, tarts, pies, etc.

BLACK (Morus Nigra). It is a most attractive long-lived tree, round headed eventually, with spreading branches. The large raspberry-like fruits are ready for picking in August and September when they have turned almost purple in colour. The fruit can be used for jams and tarts and making wine. Slow growing. Available as pot grown plants.

NUTS

KENTISH COB. Large nuts of delicious sweet taste. Prolific.

FILBERTS. Large husks holding smaller nuts of excellent flavour.

WALNUTS (Juglans nigra) (Black Walnut). Large nuts of good quality after about 1 0 years.

Bushes and trees available from early November.

The common walnut, Juglans regia, will produce fruit after about 15 years.

QUINCE

PORTUGAL. Large golden fruit ripening in October-November. Useful for flavouring, jelly and jam making. It makes a small tree about 20 ft high; bushes and half-standards available from late October.

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