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If you love the idea of growing your own fruit trees but don’t have too much space available, you can still opt for dwarf varieties that are ideal for urban courtyards or tiny gardens. There are many advantages to growing a dwarf fruit tree. Aside from saving a lot of space in your yard, this type of tree can produce quite a bountiful amount of fruits that are also within easy reach compared to regular fruit trees.
Most gardeners who choose dwarf fruit trees do so for practical reasons, mainly to enjoy a delicious harvest. These trees are also recommended purely for decorative purposes considering their gorgeous spring blossoms that can beautify any garden or patio. Nowadays, you can take your pick from a wide range of options in terms of dwarf fruit trees. This is possible thanks to the innovations in the fruit breeding industry.
Many plant nurseries have understood the importance of accommodating the needs of gardeners with smaller properties. Buying fruit from the market has become more and more expensive in recent years. It makes sense that lots of people consider the appealing idea of growing a dwarf fruit tree. You’ll be able to gather a tasty crop of fruits even if you’re not an experienced gardener. Here are the best dwarf fruit trees to consider for your mini orchard.
1. Black Tartarian Cherry
A sweet cherry cultivar, this dwarf fruit tree could be an excellent choice for many gardeners concerned about space. The Black Tartarian produces fragrant white blossoms in the spring that will be followed by clusters of smooth purplish fruits in the summer. It’s a great pick for anyone who enjoys plump cherries packed with rich flavor.
Although Black Tartarian cherries are best enjoyed fresh, you can also make use of them for preserves or canning. Growing this dwarf cultivar in your garden isn’t particularly difficult but you will need another cherry species considering that Black Tartarian trees are not self-fertile. The cherry tree can reach an average height of around 10-12 feet.
2. Celeste Fig
If you live in a warm climate area, you should consider growing a dwarf fig tree. It grows very easily outdoors while also showing off attractive foliage. The roots of fig trees thrive in tight spaces, which means that you can grow this plant in patio containers quite effortlessly.
One of the best dwarf picks for a fig tree is called Celeste. It’s recommended due to its exceptional hardiness. It can survive cooler temperatures that pose great issues to regular fig trees. Celeste figs are compact dwarf trees that can handle overwintering indoors with the help of a container. The small tree produces a bountiful harvest of fruit in the summer even though it doesn’t really have remarkable blossoms.
3. Elberta Peach
With its juicy flesh and fresh flavor, the peach is often regarded as a favorite summer fruit by many. Similar to cherries and apricots, peaches are “stone fruits”. They are naturally compact which means you can easily grow peaches in containers. As far as dwarf varieties grow, Elberta seems to be a great choice because it’s self-fertile and tolerates colder climate areas better than typical peach trees.
The Elberta dwarf peach tree produces yellow-orange peaches with the characteristic fuzzy texture on their skin. The fruits are particularly juicy and ideal for eating raw. However, it’s also a recommended variety if you prefer making jams and preserves. Peaches can be harvested from late July to early August. Keep in mind that annual pruning is pretty much essential to ensure that your Elberta peach tree remains productive.
4. Dwarf Cavendish Banana
Although bananas aren’t technically trees, but herbaceous plants, they can be grown similar to regular fruit trees. If you’re looking to add a tropical flavor to your small garden, consider including a dwarf Cavendish banana variety. It produces small bananas that are just as delicious as the ones made by larger banana trees.
The most notable downside of growing a banana tree in your yard is the fact that you need to live in a very warm region. Another important aspect to consider when growing a dwarf Cavendish tree is the requirement for a lot of rich organic material. Banana trees tend to be heavy drinkers so frequent watering is a must. The good news is that you can safely grow this stylish banana variety in a patio container as well, not just into the ground.
5. Washington Navel Orange
Those who prefer the zesty flavor of citrus trees should try out the Washington navel orange dwarf tree. As opposed to its bigger cousins, this type of orange tree can withstand cold more effectively. It produces tasty fruits without seeds and a simple-to-remove peel. The harvesting season begins in December and extends throughout the winter.
Dwarf Washington navel orange trees only reach around 7 feet in height. You can adjust its size to make it as compact as possible and fit it in any small yard without difficulties. Although the tree features decent cold tolerance, it’s required to only plant it outdoors in USDA hardiness zones 9 to 10 if you want to help it thrive.
6. Cameron Select Apple
When it comes to hardy fruit trees, few options can be more suitable than apples. There are countless dwarf apple species to choose from. We recommend the Cameron Select apple variety if you enjoy the classic crispy and juicy flavor of this fruit. It’s also a great pick because it boasts great resistance to fire blight disease.
Cameron Select apple trees produce gorgeous red fruits that will be ready for harvesting in the fall. The maximum height of the tree only reaches around 9 feet. It’s a solid dwarf variety if you live in USDA climate zones 3 to 6. Keep in mind that apple trees don’t self-pollinate which means that another tree of a different variety will be required to enjoy fruits. You need to find a compatible variety and achieve successful cross-pollination.
7. Santa Rosa Plum
There are lots of great dwarf plum tree types that are capable of producing edible fruits. Santa Rosa is one of the best examples because it’s fairly easy to grow even if your compact garden doesn’t get full sun. This type of plum tree thrives in well-drained soils in climate hardiness areas 5 to 9.
When it comes to fruit production, Santa Rosa dwarf varieties won’t disappoint. The plums of the tree are excellent for eating fresh or incorporating in baked goods. You can get a fairly generous harvest from this type of plum tree. However, it’s important to keep its growth in check through careful pruning that encourages the production of new fruits.
8. Ice Cream Mango
A stunning tropical option, the Ice Cream mango is highly recommended if you’re looking for a dwarf fruit tree suitable for warm climates. Regular mango trees are usually impractical for small home gardens considering how some specimens reach taller heights than 100 feet. The Ice Cream dwarf variety doesn’t grow beyond 8 feet in height and 4 feet in width.
This tree is capable of producing creamy fruits with a rich flavor in the hot months of the summer. Even if you don’t live in an ideal climate for this dwarf tree, the Ice Cream mango can be grown in containers for easy overwintering. It allows for pruning to reach a manageable size. Another great advantage of this dwarf fruit tree is the fact that it’s self-fertile.
9. Bartlett Pear
Whereas some dwarf fruit trees can have fussy growing requirements, the Bartlett pear seems like the best match for complete beginners. It takes minimal effort to grow one considering how the tree is able to tolerate a wider range of conditions. After proper establishment, it’s safe to say that you can easily get your Bartlett pear tree to produce many flavorful fruits.
This dwarf tree is self-fertile, which means there’s no need to get an additional pear tree from a different variety for cross-pollination. Bartlett pear trees grow best in USDA hardiness areas 5 to 8. Left unchecked, the fruit tree can reach a maximum height of twenty feet. It has a fairly compact form that makes it an ideal choice for small spaces.
10. Black Mulberry
Black mulberry trees tend to grow tall with a dense canopy. However, you can easily turn this classic tree into a dwarf version through regular pruning. The characteristic black berries can keep growing on old wood without issues after a season has ended. That means you can enjoy the tasty fruits while preventing the tree from growing too much.
When grown as a dwarf, the Black mulberry tree starts to more closely resemble the appearance of a shrub. Green catkins appear in the spring followed by fruits with a similar look to blackberries in the summer. Black mulberries are very juicy and sweet enough to work great for jams and syrups. You will find it easy to grow this fruit tree in USDA hardiness zones 5 to 9.
11. Aprigold Apricot
The Aprigold is a dwarf apricot tree variety that’s practical for a wide range of applications seeing how you can grow this specimen on the patio as well as in the ground. Although the main attraction of the plant is fruit production, apricot trees also feature lovely pink blossoms to decorate your small garden.
Thanks to its compact growing habit, an Aprigold dwarf tree works wonders for areas limited in terms of space. It’s recommended to find a sunny spot for your apricot tree to maximize fruit production. Growing this variety is a breeze considering that it’s a self-fertile tree. The harvesting period is around the summertime when you can enjoy juicy yellow apricots.
12. Meyer Dwarf Lemon
Known to produce round lemons with a balanced tart flavor, the Meyer dwarf tree variety could be a solid pick for any gardener who enjoys citrus fruits. These trees won’t grow taller than six feet in terms of height, making them suitable for compact areas. Similar to other citrus trees, Meyer lemon dwarfs can’t really handle the cold.
If you don’t live within hardiness zones 9 to 10, your best bet is to keep this tiny lemon tree as a container plant. Just make sure you keep it indoors when the temperature outside drops. This dwarf fruit tree is highly appreciated for its prolific abilities. You can expect a bountiful harvest of vibrant yellow lemons with a pleasant fragrance.