An important step toward creating an overall sustainable garden is adding native edible species of trees and shrubs in your landscape. One person, one family, and one street can make a difference toward restoring our environment. And when your overall landscape is in balance with nature you'll have a lot of success growing healthy organic vegetables. The best way to do that is to incorporate native plants in your yard.
Many edible plants that are native to North America are found in the wild so they require little to no maintenance once they are established and reach maturity. It takes most perennial edibles, native and non-native, about 2-3 years before they start fruiting and about 5 to 10 years before they produce hundreds of fruits per tree. Starting with resistant plant varieties is the best way to prevent diseases.
Berries are widely available at nurseries in the early spring, but get a jumpstart on next year by planting native berries in the fall like blackberries, blueberries and raspberries. There are hardy varieties that grow up to zone 3 and warmer climate varieties perfect for zone 9 for blackberries and raspberries and zone 10 for blueberries.
Fruit and nut Trees can also be planted in the fall. A standard size fruit tree grows to 25 feet tall and 20 feet wide when it's full grown. If you don't have enough room for a standard size tree, buy a dwarf variety that grows to be 8 to 10 feet tall and wide. A lot of the edibles native to North America are largely unknown because they thrive in the wild and so much of our native forests no longer exist. American Persimmons and Pawpaws are lesser know fruit trees that taste best when allowed to ripen on the tree and consumed shortly after harvesting. This makes them a little harder to transport to the grocery store. The best way to enjoy these is growing your own in the back yard. The compact American Hazelnut is a unique addition to your landscape. These prolific low maintenance native nut trees will make you the talk of the town.
These native edibles are available for sale at your local garden center or visit the following websites and buy the right varieties for your area.
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