If you are home gardener growing or thinking about growing fruit, you might fantasize about having an expert like horticulturist and garden writer Lee Reich out in your garden with you, dispensing advice. In the real world, the next best thing to a personal visit is to read Reich's new book, Grow Fruit Naturally: A Hands-On Guide to Luscious, Homegrown Fruit (The Taunton Press, 2012, $24.95).
Reich certainly knows his subject. A former researcher at the USDA and Cornell University, with a Ph.D. in fruit science, he is also a long-time home gardener at his ″farmden″ in New York State and an excellent garden writer to boot. So the information he provides on selecting, planting, growing, pruning, and propagating fruits is clear, accurate, appropriate for home gardeners, and engagingly written.
The first section of the book provides extensive information on the basics of fruit growing throughout the country, from planning a fruit garden, planting, growing, and pruning, to controlling pests and diseases using environmentally sound practices. You'll also find advice on growing fruits in containers and how to harvest and store your bounty.
The second part of the book covers thirty-one fruits individually, from favorites like apples, blueberry, pear, citrus, and strawberry to unusual choices like jujube, medlar, quince, and shipova, including advice on variety selection. Lots of clear diagrams and many photos enhance and expand on the information in the text.
In short, whether you are planting an entire orchard or growing only a few fruit plants, Grow Fruit Naturally will be an invaluable resource.
For more information on Grow Fruit Naturally, go to: The Taunton Store.
Article published on May 30, 2012.