Fruits and BerriesDuring 2011, we added the first of our fruit trees to the Radio Park garden: 2 apple trees and 2 Asian pears. The apples were gone within a year due to sledding accidents, but the pears are still growing. They are located between the school and the garden, so they won't cast shadows on the garden as they mature. We'll be adding more fruiting vines and shrubs during 2012 and 2013. Here's what we have so far:Asian Pear (3-on-1 Combo)Asian Pears need two varieties to pollinate, so we chose a combination grafted tree for pollination. Unfortunately, the first tree had broken grafts, but the nursery replaced it with another tree, which also had a broken graft. Between the two trees, we should have sufficient pollination. Asian pears ripen late in the season, and and very crunchy and refreshing. This year we saw our first blossoms, but a late freeze kept any fruit from forming. It is just as well, since the tree will grow more strongly and should set a good crop in 2014. Chojuro is pictured above, which ripens late in the season.Clove Currant:This is an American Black Currant, one of the plants sent to Thomas Jefferson from the Lewis and Clark expedition into the upper midwest. A small shrub, this plant boasts numerous bright yellow flowers in the spring with a strong clove scent, followed by shiny black berries in late summer sweet enough to eat right off the plant. This is a great plant to plant at home next to your patio where you can enjoy the scent and the fruit. Radio park as two plants just to the right of the main gate.Himrod GrapeA beautiful green native grape; the vine is to the right of the compost bins. We hope our young vine produces like the one in the picture someday..Hardy KiwiWe've got a few unusual vines in the garden - hardy kiwi! With tiny, sweet fruit and often bi-colored leaves, hardy kiwi is a beautiful vine with tasty fruit. Soem varieties are hardy down to -50F as well! Still we struggle to grow them at Radio Park. Hardy though they are, they are vulnerable to cold just as the leaves begin to emerge, and for the past two Spring seasons, we got cold snaps right at bud break which severely damaged the plants. We are hopeful this year's deep freeze will keep the vines dormant longer - stay tuned!Strawberries!Who doesn't love strawberries, with beautiful white flowers and sweet, fragrant fruit? We certainly can't resist them, so the 4th grade students planted some last year in the garden. We have no idea what variety they are, but they are sweet and productive. Look for them in the perennial fruit border of the garden!
Last Modified on February 17, 2014