Planting and Growing Fruit Trees in Colorado
Most fruit trees are hardy and able to withstand the extremes of Colorado’s Front Range climate. They have attractive foliage, interesting shapes, and beautiful flowers in early spring. But that tendency to bloom early is also a source of frustration for Colorado residents and growers because our warm spring days can be followed with blossom-killing late frosts, greatly reducing or entirely eliminating fruit bearing.
You may not be able to fool Mother Nature, but you can be ready for her tricks by following the hints below.
- Choose cultivars that are bred for our climate extremes.
- Avoid planting fruit trees in low spots. Cold air sinks and settles, increasing the likelihood of frost damage.
- Plant in well ventilated areas. Fences, structures, and other vegetation impede the flow of air, letting frosty weather linger longer.
- Plant in full sun in well-drained soil. Fruit trees need plenty of sun and water to do their work. Amend heavy soil to a depth of at least 12 inches with organic material to open up the soil so the roots have good access to air and water.
- Dig the planting hole extra wide to encourage root development and backfill it with well-amended soil.
- Avoid planting near hot spots like buildings with southern and western exposure. The radiated heat can encourage the tree to bloom early, before frost danger is past.
- Mulch heavily in the fall after the ground is frozen to keep the roots cool during the spring warmup and delay blossoming.
For more information and to find out how Donovan Arborists can help prepare your landscape for spring, call us at 303-623-8733 for a free estimate. We’re ready to help you plant, transplant, fertilize, deep root water and consult on the best practices for your trees and lawn care needs.