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Hi! I'm new to this forum, though I've been lurking a bit; I post a bit on the homeschooling forum though. Anyway, we bought a house with a large yard a few months ago, but the previous owners didn't tell us much about what they had planted. There are about seven trees, set in groups of two or three of the same one, all pretty small and spindly. There are also a few other things -- one a very "stick-ish" bush sort of thing (bad description, I know), and one that looks like a bush, though maybe it's just a really small tree (not much of a trunk). I know virtually nothing about plants/gardening. We live in south-central PA, so it's just started to get warm recently, and a couple of the trees are starting to bloom a bit. I took a couple of the blossoms to a local nursery, and one of the ladies there said she thought one was a cherry and one a peach.<br><br>
My question is this: how do I tell if they are ornamental or if they will bear fruit? I know it takes several years to bear fruit, so is there a way to tell in the meantime, or do we just have to wait 3-5 years and see? I asked a neighbor whose house has a good view of that part of the yard if she happened to recall when they put in the trees; she said she thought it was just a year or two ago, as there was a moratorium on fruit trees around here for a while due to an outbreak of plum pox.<br><br>
Also, once we determine what types of plants they are, what should we do to them? Someone told me fruit trees need to be sprayed -- what can we do that's safe and organic?<br><br>
Any other suggestions for me? Thank you in advance! I've learned a lot about gardening just from lurking (trying my hand at veggies and herbs this year).
 

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Once you know what type of trees they are, do some research on local afflictions for those species. Not all trees need to be sprayed, and a lot of diseases do have more organic methods of control if you're willing to be aggressive about it.<br><br>
As to taking care of them, I would start looking into tree trimming places and look for someone with experience trimming fruit trees. Most fruit trees should be trimmed annually, but only by someone who knows what they're doing. Letting someone who doesn't know what they're doing trim your tree can mean no fruit for years.<br><br>
I don't know any way of telling whether the trees are ornamental or fruit-bearing at this point, but honestly, them being planted in "sets" would make me think fruit-bearing, as they would be planted that way for cross-pollenization.<br><br>
HTH
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>cristeen</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7940775"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I don't know any way of telling whether the trees are ornamental or fruit-bearing at this point, but honestly, them being planted in "sets" would make me think fruit-bearing, as they would be planted that way for cross-pollenization.</div>
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And only female trees will bear fruit, so hopefully one in the set will be a male. If you get no fruit they could be immature, all the same sex or ornamental. Hopefully you'll get something nice out of them <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

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Discussion Starter #4
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>cristeen</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7940775"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Letting someone who doesn't know what they're doing trim your tree can mean no fruit for years.</div>
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Oh, that is a good point -- thanks for that tip! I'll look into finding someone.<br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">I don't know any way of telling whether the trees are ornamental or fruit-bearing at this point, but honestly, them being planted in "sets" would make me think fruit-bearing, as they would be planted that way for cross-pollenization.<br><br>
HTH</td>
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That's what I was thinking as well -- here's hoping that's the case! Googling for pictures suggests that cherry and peach are pretty good guesses, and buds on some of the others look like pears. I sure hope so!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>~MoonGypsy~</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7940832"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">And only female trees will bear fruit, so hopefully one in the set will be a male. If you get no fruit they could be immature, all the same sex or ornamental. Hopefully you'll get something nice out of them <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"></div>
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That's what I was afraid of -- we just won't know for a while. Well, in the meantime, at least they're pretty, and some local farmer's market will get our business for their fruit, so having to wait a few years isn't terribly bad. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
Thanks!
 
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