THE LOUISIANA HOME ORCHARD
Louisiana home fruit production appeals to many urban homeowners with limited space as well as to rural residents. Home-grown vine or tree-ripened fruit is higher in quality than that bought at the grocery store. Growing your own fruit can be profitable and satisfying, and most fruit trees add to your landscape. You cannot expect to grow quality fruit without caring for the plants. Success will depend largely on variety selection, soil management, pruning, fertilization, irrigation, pest control and other cultural practices. The size of your planting should be determined by the space available, site, size of your family and the time you can devote to orchard maintenance.
Select a Good Location
The success of the home fruit planting is influenced greatly by the site selected. This cannot be overemphasized. Remember: cold air, like water, flows downhill, so avoid low frost pockets. A deep, well-drained soil with good surface and subsurface drainage is important. Fruit plants will not grow well in water-logged soil. Also, the site should provide ample sunlight for proper growth and development of the plants.
Choose the Right Kind of Fruit
The decision to plant fruit should involve careful variety selection. Not all fruit species are adapted to all areas of Louisiana. To plant a given type or variety without considering its adaptation can lead to disappointment. We are often led to believe that many of the older, well-publicized varieties will do well in Louisiana home gardens. For example, the Bartlett pear and Elberta peach are two fruit varieties that have little place in a Louisiana fruit planting. The Elberta peach has been replaced by superior peach varieties, and the Bartlett pear is not adapted to our climate. Many factors ultimately determine the adaptation of a given fruit species to an area. Some of these conditions are discussed here. FOR A COMPLETE GUIDE TO LOUISIANA FRUIT TREES CLICK HERE!