Growing fruits in your home garden yields plenty of benefits. Apart from cutting down your trips to the grocery store, fruit trees contribute to a healthy environment; they purify the air, prevent soil erosion, and encourage wildlife to flourish. Some also provide a good amount of shade to cool your home during summer.
But to reap these benefits, you must select varieties that grow well in your area. The best fruit trees for Tucson are those that can cope with the harsh environmental conditions of a desert climate. In general, these should be varieties that have good pollination characteristics and a low chill requirement. We have listed a few below to get you started.
5 Fruit Trees For Tucson That Will Grow Anywhere
We all do love peaches, don’t we? The good news? There is quite a number of peach varieties available for gardeners in Tucson, and depending on the variety and level of maintenance, a peach tree can serve you for more than 15 years.
The most popular fruit trees in Tucson for good peaches are Babcock, Bonanza Miniature, May Pride, and Flordaprince. These require less than 500 chill hours (amount of time trees must spend in 45° weather or less; chill hours need not be continuous, they can be cumulative), well-drained soils, regular pruning, and regular fertilizing.
Working with a tree service Tucson expert can help you determine which varieties will grow best in your garden. You may also want to talk to other gardeners in your area to find out what their experiences have been with various varieties.
Arizona is generally not known for big, juicy apples but if you pick the right varieties, you can enjoy healthy, delicious apples. And as with all Tucson trees grown for fruit, when it comes to planting apples, it all boils down to how many hours the tree needs to chill.
Ideally, you should select a variety that has low chill hours, that is self-pollinating, and whose fruit matures early. The Anna, Ein Shemer, and Dorsett Golden varieties would be a great place to start. If you have the space, plant as many as you can to promote cross-pollination. This will increase fruit yield.
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Blueberries are relatively cold-climate fruits, often requiring moist, well-draining acidic soils. There are some varieties, however, that have been found to do pretty well in Tucson, with little maintenance. Good examples are the O’Neal, Misty, Sharpblue, and Sunshine Blue.
To get the most out of your blueberries, pair them with different varieties. You can start with a few plants planted next to each other. And since these are fairly small trees, you can even have them in containers if you don’t have the space. Just make sure to site them in a partially shaded spot.
Another fruit tree you don’t want to exclude from your list is the blackberry tree. Many varieties are available for the Tucson climate including Brison, Brazos, Womack, and Rosborough. The best thing about these trees? They do not require any special soils or modifications; as long as you plant them in full sun, you can expect to start harvesting fruit within the first two years.
Just make sure you are pruning them as often as you can. Left unattended, blueberry trees can grow into a huge trailing bush. Any professional tree trimming Arizona service can help you with the pruning, but if you are like most gardeners, you may want to do this simple task yourself.
Almonds come from Prunus Dulcis, a tree that loves hot, dry desert weather. The recommended variety for Tucson is the semi-dwarf ‘all in one’ that is self-pollinating and grows best in fast-draining soils. Nonpareil and Ne Plus Ultra have also been found to thrive in this area. Plant these two species next to each other or next to an ‘all in one’ variety to promote cross-pollination.
The almond tree is one of the most popular small trees for Arizona, perhaps because it requires very little maintenance compared to other fruit trees of the same size. They produce large fruits that look like clusters of green peaches. In the summer, the outer coat of the fruit peels off, revealing the almonds inside.
Plant in full to partial sun, in well-draining, modified soil. Mulch the roots and apply balanced, organic fertilizer regularly. To harvest the almonds, set up a tarp underneath the tree canopy, and shake the tree.
The Local Tree Experts Overview
Many people may not think of Tucson as having the right environment for fruit growing, but in reality, there are many fruit varieties that thrive here. If you are looking for the best fruit trees for Tucson, hopefully, this list will give you something to think about. Make sure to consult with your tree expert so you can choose the most appropriate fruit for your soil type and the available space.