My Backyard Orchard in South Carolina

Howdy folks. I just wanted to say hello and thanks for the information. I have planted about 30 varieties of stone fruit in my backyard orchard this winter and last. I have used a lot of information in selecting fruits from Scott’s stone fruit journals and appreciate the head start. I am including a map of my orchard which shows the varieties and placement. I planted them all on land that I cleared late in 2019 on a 15 ft by 15 ft spacing. I basically am aiming to have fruit during the warm season. In the future, I plan on expanding into cane fruit and vines, but wanted to start the fruit trees now. I hand watered (using a golf cart and sprayer) during 2020, but will install micro irrigation in the next 6 weeks or so. I live less than ten miles from major peach country, so it shouldn’t be impossible to grow em, but understand I will have to get a spraying regiment. I think micro irrigation will help tremendously. Anyways, thanks for all the information and I look forward on reporting my findings, deep down in the south.

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Wow, Josh. Nice selections!

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I probably should say that the lighter brown on the chart was planted in 2020, the darker brown planted so far in 2021, and the yellow background are cherries that have been ordered but not arrived yet. There are ten rows of trees and the chart had to be cut horizontally to be uploaded here.


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@boatwrong, can you provide a bit more about your micro irrigation plans? I have about 50 trees, I’m close to a water source, but the rows are not fully mulched. (only mulched in a circle to the tree dripline, grass between trees and currently mow that space.) I’m wondering if I could employ what you are planning. I look forward to hearing more about your orchard!

Thanks!

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Quite an endeavor, congratulations and good luck. Sounds like you have thought out a sound plan for your new orchard. Great job!

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@Rosdonald I had a well punched last year while my house was being built on the farm. The well yields 20 Gallons Per Minute or when looking at output (1200 gallons per hour). I am looking at using either 3 gallon per hour emitters or 5 GPH emitters, which even with my number of trees ( I think 74 trees) will be less than half of the well’s output (74 trees X emitters that put out 5 gph = 370 gph). I will probably break my orchard into two zones to reduce pressure loss during irrigation because I have about a 7% slope in my orchard. I do not have the exact brand of emitters selected at this point.

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I wish you well with the cherries, but they don’t do very
well in SC. I hope you’re the exception.

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I don’t expect to not have some problems, but my goal is to find some varieties that can do well here. My goal is 50% success rate with all my fruit trees.

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Thanks @boatwrong for the detailed explanation. You certainly have planned ahead!!!

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Impressive. With such an endeavor, I hope you have been in touch with your local university extension service. Wish you success.

Lot of west coast fruits on the list. Keep us posted on their success rates for you. Good luck!!

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Thanks man. I figured somebody has got to try em here. Kinda running it like an experiment, which is why I planted two of each variety. If half of them do well, I will be pleased.

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I’m gonna follow along and see what works well for ya. I’m slowly starting to put in some fruit and nut trees on piece of property in Ehrhardt, SC. Good luck man!

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That’s a big undertaking for trying to grow what you have here in SC, I’m between Sumter and Florence and I will be very interested in seeing how it all turns out. I have cane berries growing on a rotating cross arm trellis I planted in 2019. I made my trellises after seeing pictures of a grower in MO using his homemade trellises and contacted him and he sent me the details of how he made his. He has 200 acres of blackberries growing on them. I also have 30 of the new thornless primocane blackberries, Freedom and Traveler, if you need any input about them. Traveler by far is the best so far and has huge blackberries. They started to ripen in late May and survived a few pretty good frost during their early bloom time. They had leaves and finished blooming before the other thornless blackberries started to put out leaves. Their second crop started ripening mid July on the new primocanes but didn’t produce a very big crop. I wish you luck and look forward to hearing more, especially about the Pluots Apriums and Pluerrys.

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Wow, that is an impressive list! What is your soil like? It looks sandy, but can’t tell for sure. It will be great to see updates on this huge orchard.

Pam in very cold NH

Hi Josh I live in Greenville SC and I planted over 40 fruit trees in my backyard about 4 years ago. I have 5 different type of plums and they are all doing great! Good luck to you!
Ben Ghorbani

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My soil is very sandy. All sand. All the way to China.

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I’m in SC too: no surprise all this sand was prehistoric coastline! I wish you the best with the cherries! I bit the bullet and am trying a Montmorency on the coolest sunny spot in my yard. What’s life without experimenting, eh?

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