Our Yard: Edible Tree and Shrub Catalogue

by - December 27, 2016

We are entering 2017 with a yard full of new trees. It's time I made a list of exactly what we have out there in our vast landscape (just kidding, it's 1/3 an acre). We took down the hairless peach because the brown rot has been out of control for years. We had tried sprays and pruning, but in the end I made the impulse decision to pick up two $7 trees and needed a good, sunny space. I was sad because of it's history, but we planted two pears to replace it. Another tree we bid farewell to was an old dogwood that was dropping branches and appeared to have been through major trauma.

Our ongoing dilemma is finding the best location to plant new trees. We are still maintaining some lawn space for the kids to run around and pass a football, so our trees are mostly along the property lines. I would love to plant them along the street, but the neighborhoods power, gas and telecom lines all run through our front yard. I still have to find a spot for the two elderberries. I could plant them on either side of a new Jane Magnolia in the front yard where they would get full sun or I may plant them in front of the shed next to where we are planning a treehouse/chicken coop combination under the big magnolia.

Punica granatum 'Nana' or 'Salavastski' (Pomegranate)
Malus 'Winesap' Semi-Dwarf  (Apple)*
Malus domestica 'Yellow Delicious' (Apple)
Pyrus communis 'Keiffer' Semi-Dwarf (Pear)*
Pyrus communis 'Ayers' Semi-Dwarf (Pear)*
Sambucus canadensis 'Nova' (Elderberry)*
Pecan - 'Elliot'
Cherry - 'Stella' maybe?

3 or 4 varieties of blueberries
Elaeagnus multiflora (Goumi berry)
Hansen's Bush Cherry **
Hops Vine 'Columbus'**
Thornless Blackberries


* New since Fall 2016
** Waiting for shipment in the Spring

Not every tree in our yard has sentimental value like the one peach we cut down. Some trees were gifts, some bushes were from weekend visits to the Farmer's Market. But the yellow delicious apple tree belongs to my youngest son. We had a date to a garden center, and that was the tree he selected. I will always remember his determination to select the apple tree and not the pear tree that I was pushing for. Sometimes changing a child's mind is as simple as making a suggestion, but he knew exactly what he wanted, and there was no chance I was going to be able to talk up that pear tree and bring him over to my side. We initially planted it in the back of the yard but had to move it once we started building the shed. It's now by the mailbox, so he sees it every time we come home. I love his joy for gardening!

The cherry tree is Joe's tree, and that poor tree makes the sourest, nastiest cherries I've ever tried and has been moved two to three times to make room for other plants and the firepit. Joe loves cherries, so we are waiting patiently for it to mature and hopefully give us something good.

My oldest son doesn't have a tree and isn't really into gardening. However, he LOVES climbing trees. Who knows... maybe there is still time to win him over.

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