Introducing myself to Scott's forum

I should probably say “hello”!

Hi! I’m Andrew and I’m based in the central/eastern part of Iowa (5a/5b-ish). I’m still relatively new to growing fruits so I’ve been listening and reading significantly more than posting.

We have a house in new development in a suburban area but with a fair amount of ground given the circumstance (.3 acre). We were planting shade trees, and my wife spent months convincing me to get a Cherry tree. So, we finally did. She sold me on fresh jams, jellies, pies, etc. So, 4 years ago we bought one from a local nursery, planted it, and killed it within 2 weeks. Thought it was a bad spot in the yard. Next year, we bought another, killed it within 3 weeks (or so we thought). It tried to come back in the fall, but it soon died for good this time. This was unusual because we’ve planted plenty of shade trees and never had problems.

Ended up doing a significant amount of reading online and learned how cherry trees don’t particularly like water. Changed how and where we planted it, and year 3, we got one to survive - which was especially impressive to us considering right after we planted it the temperatures went into the mid 90’s (unusual for the area at that time), it got ravaged by Japanese beetles, and it got assaulted by ~120mph straight-line winds.

It came back and produced cherries in 2021. From there, I went ‘all-in’ to growing fruit. Everything is still very young, but we have 3 apples, 4 euro pears, 2 sour cherry, 2 sweet cherry (not expecting much), 2 raspberry, 5 blueberry, and 1 blackberry. Looking forward to planting honeyberries, currants, an apricot, asian pear, 2 more apples, a peach, a multi-graft plum, and trying out some grafting on the current apple and pear trees in 2022.

This forum is an outstanding resource and a special and a huge thanks to all who created and are maintaining it!


You’ve gotten your feet wet it looks like…

Hopefully you found some good spots in the yard to plant…but if the soil or drainage is too bad…raised beds solve the problem. (And raised beds don’t have to be enclosed in edging, stones, or anything… a mound of good dirt is also a raised bed.)
Good luck in '22.

Putting the cherry in a raised bed was the trick that finally worked (and putting it in the notoriously driest section of the yard). All of the trees are in some sort of raised bed about 4-5" above the ground. Rain can be unpredictable in this part of Iowa, so this will (hopefully) help me control water levels a bit better, and as a plus, it makes other yard maintenance easier!

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Hi Mark, Don’t despair about your tomatoes. I live just west of you on the coast. Although not a place known for tomato growing, a bit of care selecting a good spot outdoors or use of a shelter with good sun will produce good crops. Being in the valley as you are provides ample tomato growing conditions. I start from seed indoors in late February, move into small greenhouse in April. Unheated except I use heat pads. Transplant 3 times. Replant deep into large containers. Some I plant outside depending on what variety. Good luck and keep us posted.


Howdy, Carl here, in the mountains of North Carolina. Often looking at less common things, but always looking to be able to just harvest things from my yard. About three yearsago I bought property and so “my yard” is actually now my yard. It’s an awkward shaped acre in zone 6B with assorted microclimes. Last year was mostly about putting in fruiting trees and bushes. This year will be more about grafting and trying out odd veggies. Former owners loved ornamentals, but they had puppy syndrome and didn’t thing about adult sizes of what they planted, nor invasiveness of some choices, so next year will probably see a lot of extraction. I’ve already removed some black walnut saplings the squirrel overlords obviously had no plan for when they placed them, and I’m removing a stunted Maple and at least downsizing an ancient pear that might be salvageable. I’m thinking about bark grafting assorted hardier fruit types on branch stumps that have gotten dangerous as they are.
Most of my fun so far has been assorted medlar, pawpaw, and kiwi, some of which may even give me first fruits this summer. Grafting onto black walnut was so far a fail, but everything else has been more cooperative so far.


Welcome to the forum Carl! I see you have pawpaw on your planting list I just wanted to mention they can be grown along with mullberries and a few others amongst your black walnuts.

Also, those walnuts can be grafted to better varieties so you’ll maybe want to consider keeping some!

Hi everyone,

I’ve been lurking on this forum for a few years and finally decided to make an account. This forum has a wealth of knowledge and I really appreciate its existence. Thanks to Scott and all of the contributors.

Growing up, I spent a lot of time helping my grandpa in his backyard and I loved it. He had cherries, pears, apples, grapes, mulberries and raspberries. I have my own backyard now and even though he’s gone, he still remains as my inspiration.

I’m Zone 5b in Ontario and am currently growing:
Haskap - Beauty/Beast/Blizzard/Aurora/Indigo Gem
Raspberry - Nova/Autumn Britten/Unknown
Cherry - Romeo/Juliet/Cupid/Carmine Jewel
Pear - Douglas/Concorde
Fig - Chicago Hardy/Jean Talon/Colasanti Dark
Strawberry - Seascape
Apple - Unknown but it’s old and unfortunately being attacked by sapsuckers.

I’m planting a few more trees this Spring and then I think I’m about out of space. Chestnut Crabapple, Dewdrop Pear, Sunrise Pear, IE Mulberry and Carman Mulberry. I tried finding Harrow Sweet after reading all sorts of favorable reviews on this forum however I couldn’t find a provider in Canada. I’m also going to be starting some Yellow Wonder Strawberries in a few days along with some pollinator friendly perennials.

I’m looking forward to learning and connecting with this community.


There are a couple I have been experimenting on, but mostly the squirrels’ plan seems to have been a monocrop that shades the entire yard. I’m sure they’ll provide a similar application to everything I’m growing. I intend to have a butternut, a red walnut, and a white walnut of some kind/s. I’d love to find the dwarf variety stateside, but it doesn’t appear to have made it here yet.

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Greetings good people!

I’m Geri, a mini-multi-hyphenate fruit loving native Angelina transplanted to Baltimore, MD nearly 35 years ago (but still blooming). Raised with a yard full of semi-tropical fruit trees, I hated garden chores but enjoyed the fruit and cried when we built an extension to our house sacrificing the mature lemon and apricot – that fresh lemonade, tho’!!. But we still had 2 pomegranates, a plantain, 2 plums, muscat grapes, and a huge fig.

I came to B’more in 1987 to grab a doctorate in public health with plans to move to Papua New Guinea, E. Africa or Brazil. Got tripped before I could make my exit (or even before I could finish my doctorate) by my hubby of 32 years, I didn’t escape to my planned ex-pat life and shocking everyone, I began backyard gardening in a tiny space.

Now I’ve been an urban organic food fanatic for at least 30-31 years with a focus on small space gardening, eventually getting certified as a Square Foot Garden instructor (although I rarely use that). I ventured into fruit with a locally purchased five in one cherry tree a couple years later and a few annual fruits like ground cherries. I tried my hand at – and lost – a handful of dwarf potted trees, but still have my Spanish Pink Lemon. My garden now consists of my whole front and back yards in a 21 ft wide, middle group townhouse-style home plot where I grow a variety of herbs, vegetables and fiber plants and maintain:

  • that cherry tree (with only 3 varieties left)
  • the potted Spanish Pink lemon (THRIVING!),
  • a grumpy-spiky useless (only 1 bloom, ever!) potted lime of unknown origin
  • 5 BLUE blueberries (3 bushel & berry varieties)
  • 4 PINK blueberries (POPCORN & LEMONADE)
  • Baby cakes Blackberries (suffered last year)
  • Raspberry shortcake and 1 creeping raspberry groundcover
  • Various regular, alpine and novelty strawberries, much declined

Google Photos

#Goals: replace strawberries, redo my borders replacing ubiquitous catmint with creeping raspberry and lowbush blueberry and maybe try again with the potted hardy micro-mini fruit trees.

and that’s just the fruit.


Welcome Geri! You have quite a lot of things going on in that yard, that’s great! For your cherry tree, you might look into grafting additional stone fruit if compatible.

Strawberries usually need the runners to be started every couple of years to get things producing again, while tearing out the original plants.

There are plenty of discussions about growing blueberries as well as their care and maintenance.

Your lime can probably be grafted to a different citrus variety but once again I’d confirm compatibility first!

Hi Geri. Welcome! This is a informative and fun bunch of fruit fans.

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Welcome Geri!

Thanks for the warm welcome.

@disc4tw : I think further discussion I will need to move elsewhere, but I’m interested in grafting more cherry varieties if I can revive the tree. :pray:t5: It’s been nearly over 25 years and I have no idea what it’s root stock is. I worry it will be spent soon, but the rainer limb is increasing. I believe in a hard prune – worked twice. I just killed my pole saw today tackling a limb too large pruning off dead stump-lettes and clearing out new growth. :rofl: (next step, learn to put it back together properly after cleaning).

This lime is a deadly razor bush ~ 4 years old. I’m not keeping it. The end. :laughing: Free to a good home. Look for it on nextdoor. :wink:


Do you live in Cincinnasti, Ohio Home of the 2022 super bowl winners.

Greeting Y’all! Great to see so many recognizable names, as its been a while since I’ve been in such fine kindred company. Been playing around with plants all my life, citrus, mangoes, tropicals. Then my parents moved to Holland, Mi. Got my feet wet with ornamentals working for a nursery in town and completed college. Ive been a teacher for almost 20 yrs. 10 yrs ago I started 2 acre asian/ euro pear and assorted hazelnuts, blueberry plants. Then salary was cut with little promise for raises and I moved my family, 8&12 yr olds back to Holland and took a job in international sales. After 2 years our sales force in Mexico sold 475,000,000 worth of German automated swine feeding systems to Swift, a newly Chinese firm, they eliminated my job in Holland and offered me one in Mexico. Back to education… and picked up a couple online jobs to double my pay, and after 5 years, and the flipping of a couple properties, in 2020 we bought 24 acres of farmland, a real dream with 3 ponds, elevated prarie, water management ditch and 12 acres of slightly sloping deep clayey loam. ph5
Ive been carefully considering various crops and after researching, the crowded fields of blueberries, apples, peaches and the challenges posed by Swd and reliance on sprays and bringing the products to market, I’ve decided on hazelnuts, specifically Rutger’s newly released european EFB immune/resistant varieties. I still plan on planting Asian/Euro pears, early peaches, apricots, plums and some apples, berries for my fruit and nut stand.
Currently I have 9 acres deer fenced, in the ground double density, 750 Raritan, 100 Hunterdon, 100 Monmouth, 100 The Beast hybrid pollinator, and 550 americana hybrids. And in the fenced in area I have a 15’ wide strip, 1000’ long Full full sun area where I’m going to high density the above fruit plants on dwf rootstock unless otherwise needed. like on the Asian pears. Just one strip… I guess it’s never too late to join the party!
Now I don’t have to search outdated posts on Houzz with Harvestman cross references…


Hi everyone,

I have been an occasional reader and recently made an account. I like gardening & farming. I currently have a small, but expanding garden in my back yard :slight_smile:

I like starting my own plants from seed and usually plant a little bit of everything (types of produce). This year I am attempting propagation of many types of hardwood cuttings, wish me luck :slight_smile:


Welcome Temporary! :grinning:

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Hi Oscar, I am based in Germany and would definitely be interested in joining.


Hi everyone, just wanted to introduce myself from northern Illinois. I’m Nicole, plant-obsessed for as long as I can remember and it’s a subject I never tire of! Although I have been gardening with perennials and ornamental trees for years, my husband and I have recently become really interested in growing food.

We currently have two Asian pears (Chojuro & Korean Giant), two apples (Liberty & William’s Pride), three pawpaws (Wabash, NC-1, Shenandoah) and a Prok persimmon. They’ve only been planted over the last two years so we have not yet gotten to taste any fruit. Can’t wait!

I’ve read a few threads here, and there sure a lot of knowledgeable folks in this group. I’m looking forward to learning and sharing!


Welcome Nicole! You’re among friends!