hi, we are planting our lifestyle block with fruit trees, natives etc… Most of the soil is clay and the area can be quite windy. Can you recommend any fruit trees that might grow successfully on the land? I am heading to palmers Whangarei at the weekend so I hope to pick some trees up? thanks.sarah.

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Hi Sarah

Thanks for your question. It sounds lovely! Establishing wind protection around each plant will be vital for the first several years until shelter trees are grown.

Fruit Trees for Clay soil: Firstly each hole will have to be dug wide and deep (4 x root ball), the soil removed and backfilled with quality compost that you can purchase in store. Dust the hole with Gypsum (available in store) before filling with soil.

Plant plum, apple, apricot, peach, nectarine all at least 5 meters apart to allow wind flow. Any variety recommended in store will be suitable but each tree as mentioned must be surrounded with posts and wind break.

Shelter trees:

Planting shelter trees and hedging at the edge of the orchard area will be ideal to slow the wind down. Quick growing shrubs like Griselinia are ideal or planting Feijoa as a surrounding hedge will be an edible wind tolerant solution.

Happy gardening

Maria – Palmers national garden consultant

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