Best fruit trees for espalier

(Question)

Looking for suggestions on fruit tree espalier. I am redoing a garden which was a great rose garden for over 30 years. It runs the length of my garage facing south. The soil was clay base but has been upgraded with peat moss and manure of the period of 20 years. The spot gets 3-4 hour full sun because a royal crab apple tree partially covering the spot. Any suggestion on a fruit to fit this 2ft by 25ft garden.

Thank you

 

 

 

(Answer)

Hello,

Good for you to consider landscaping with fruit. Although apples, pears and to some extent, cherries, respond very well to espalier techniques, they will not be productive in the light conditions you have. Therefore, I recommend that you use soft fruit, specifically red and / or white currants and their close relatives, gooseberries. All will be fruitful in less sunlight, are easy to grow and can be trained as a fan, cordon (single canes) or candelabra style espalier. The following websites give excellent step by step instructions on how to create an espalier :

https://www.finegardening.com/how-to/articles/espalier.aspx

https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/mg273

https://apps.rhs.org.uk/advicesearch/Profile.aspx?pid=319

And you may find this article helpful, too. It was written by Lee Reich, noted author of The Pruning Book as well as Landscaping with Fruit:

Enjoy the beauty and bounty of your espaliers!