The Q&A Archives: Help With New Yard

Question: We have just bought a home in Maple Falls, Wa. 98266. I want to
1. Plant a few fruit trees (apple, plum, pear and peach)

2. I could send pictures, ...we have 1/3 acre, the front has beautiful rocked borders..(loose rock, not rock walls), bordering the front and down the driveway. Would love to know what to pull, what to keep, what to plant. I am new to the Pacific N.W. and have no idea how to go about doing this. We are seniors, on a fixed income (low!) so I can't go

Answer: It sounds as though you have an existing garden so I'd recommend simply observing what is there for the first gardening season. That way you can decide what you like and do not like and can remove those plants you're not especially fond of and replace them with something more suitable. Maple Falls is in Whatcom County where fruit trees and small fruits grow well. Some suggested fruit trees include:
Apple - Gravenstein, Akane, Chehalis, Liberty, Jonagold

Pear - Clapp Favorite, Bartlett, Orcas, Comice

Plum/Prune - Methley, Beauty, Shiro, Early Italian, Seneca

Cherry - Van, Angela, Hardy Giant, Emperor Francis

Peach - Early Redhaven, Harken, Frost

As for ornamental shrubs and flowers, you'll find a wealth of information on the following Washington State University Home Horticulture web pages. Simply scroll down to the subject of your choice and you'll find tons of information and suggested varieties:

If you click on the calendar on the above Whatcom county cooperative extension site you'll find that the Master Gardener program holds an annual plant sale. This is an excellent place to find plants that do well locally and the best part is, they're relatively inexpensive.

Hope this information is helpful. Good luck with your new garden!

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