Where to Plant Fruit Trees

Once you’ve chosen the types of fruit you’d like to grow, it’s time to figure out where to plant fruit trees.

where to plant fruit trees
Fruit trees need full sun.

Where to Plant Fruit Trees

You can grow fruit trees in the ground or in containers. The containers have to be big, and the trees have to be small (dwarf) sized. I’ll tell you more about the types of fruit tree sizes another day, but don’t worry if you have a small backyard. You can still add a fruit tree.

Fruit trees need full sunlight. Full sunlight is defined as six or more hours per day of bright, direct sunshine. You can’t skimp on this. Anything less than six hours a day of direct sunlight won’t help your tree produce fruit. The tree may live, but you won’t get fruit from it.

Sunlight is needed by fruit trees both for photosynthesis (energy production) and fruit production and ripening. So be sure that wherever you wish to plant your fruit tree, it gets plenty of direct sunshine. That’s the one thing you can’t skimp on!

So where to plant fruit trees depends first on the light conditions in your yard. Unfortunately, if a big building, a neighbor’s shed or a big old pine tree blocks the light, you won’t be able to grow a fruit tree.

All fruit trees like this pear tree need plenty of bright, direct sunlight.

Type of Soil for Fruit Trees

Where to plant fruit trees also depends on the soil you have to work with. Most fruit trees can grow just fine in any soil as long as it is amended with plenty of organic materials. A loam soil or a sandy loam is perfect for fruit trees, but I have mostly clay and as you can see from the photos accompanying these articles, I’ve been able to grow fruit just fine!

I recommend getting a soil test done before planting fruit trees in your backyard. A soil test will reveal the pH of the soil as well as its composition. You can get your soil tested at your local Cooperative Extension office. 

orchard early spring 2016
My orchard is planted on a slope. I am standing at the top of the slope among the apple trees looking towards the peaches and others.

Location: Slopes and Drainage

If you’re planting fruit trees in the ground, look for an area on your property that has a gentle slope. Plant the fruit trees near the top of the slope. Cold air sinks to the bottom of a slope. Water drains to the bottom, too. You want both warmer temperatures and well-drained soil, which you will find at the top of the slope.

What if you don’t have a slope? Don’t worry about it. Sure, it’s ideal. But fruit trees have been grown in many places that aren’t ideal. You can plant one in a container or simply plant a fruit tree wherever you have full sunshine and plenty of room for it to grow.

starting a home orchard
Starting a home orchard, the series at Home Garden Joy.

More to Learn! Read the Series

There’s lots more to learn and know about successfully growing fruit trees in your backyard. I’ve shared a series of articles here on Home Garden Joy with more to come.  I will be adding more articles to the series, so check back often for new information.

17 Replies to “Where to Plant Fruit Trees”

  1. Living in the mountains, a lot of trees don’t do very well. I would love to plant an apple and cherry tree here, though – thank you for the tips! #HomeMattersParty

    1. Thanks Sahana! I grew up in an urban area and we grew veggies in a tiny backyard. Then I had an apartment with shade and grew them in pots on a deck. I am blessed now with plenty of room, but I do know what it is like to struggle to find space…you can do it!!!

  2. We had peach trees in our backyard when I was growing up that were there when we moved it. It was always nice to have them there. Before I left Ohio, my step-father had apple trees. Now, they were my favorite to own!

    It’s nice learning more about how to plant them too.

    Thank you for sharing on the #HomeMattersParty. I am glad we co-host together.

  3. We have a peach tree in our backyard that was already there when we moved in. It hadn’t been maintained, so it overproduced fruit and all the peaches were bad. Then one of the branches snapped off because it was too heavy, so my husband pruned it a few months ago and now it’s doing very well. Thanks for the tips! #HomeMattersParty

  4. Oh my goodness, how I would love a peach tree! I think I would be happy with any kind of tree. Last night I had a dream that my zucchini was overflowing. I was excited! Then, I woke up and remembered that my plant died 🙁 At least my green peppers are still going strong!

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