With the cost of living rising dramatically around the globe, many households are finding it increasingly difficult to manage costs while putting healthy food in lunch boxes or on the table at mealtimes.
A home orchard, even a modest one, can help to ease some of the pain by providing seasonal fruit which can then be harvested and preserved or frozen to keep the family going over the winter months.
Winter is the best time to be planning and planting fruit trees. Most garden centres receive their fruit tree supplies in winter so that is when you will have the best chance of getting the varieties wanted. While it may take a few years, eventually you will be rewarded by fruit worth many times the cost of the original tree purchase. The key to wise investment in fruit trees is to do your homework and have a plan.
Visit waimeanurseries.co.nz for a full list of variety choices to suit your situation.
|Season / months||Fruit types||Highly productive home orchard varieties|
|December to February
Mid summer fruiting
|Stone fruit including dwarf varieties; blueberries; boysenberries||Apricot 'Tomcot', Cherry 'Lapins', Nectarine 'Goldmine', dwarf Peach 'Bonanza', and Peach 'Peacharine'.|
|March to May
|Apples, pears, nashi, quince, feijoa, figs.||Feijoa 'Kaiteri', dwarf Apple 'Blush Babe', Ballerina Apple 'Flamenco', Apple 'Initial', dwarf Pear 'Garden Belle'.|
|June to October
|Satsuma mandarins, Navel oranges, Valencia oranges, limes.||Mandarin 'Miho', Orange 'Powell Navel', Lime 'Tahitian'|
|November to December
Early summer fruiting
|Summer raspberries, early blueberries||Raspberry 'Waiau', Blueberries 'Misty' and 'Marimba'.|
Preserving by freezing is a healthy alternative to preserving in jars, as no added sugar is required.
Fruit trees grown by Waimea Nurseries are available from garden retailers nationwide.
Red currants, peaches, apricots, plums and cherries.
Pear 'Garden Belle'