Growing Fruit In The UK
Despite the UK’s reputation for changeable weather, it is possible to grow a wide variety of fruit.
Apples and pears are some of the most widely grown fruit trees in the UK and for good reason. They can cope with the cold, wind and rain better than most trees with stone fruits (cherries, peaches etc), although their tolerance varies with variety. If you live in southern and central England, you will have a wider choice of varieties to pick from than if you live further north. Even within a garden, different micro-climates can be found and enable fruit that would otherwise not be suitable to survive. A south facing wall will maximise sun and shelter.
Plums, along with Gage and Damson, are the most resilient of the stone-fruiting trees followed by cherry trees. They require a site that is sunny, sheltered from wind and not waterlogged.
A number of varieties of peach, nectarine and apricot have been bred for their suitability across much of the UK. Whilst they require shelter, sun and warmth, the flavoursome fruits they produce are incomparable to those available in the supermarket. The beautiful pink blossom of peach and nectarine trees in spring gives them great ornamental value too.
Avalon Pride Peach is one of the best varieties for the UK climate, with resistance to peach leaf curl and reduced susceptibility to frost damage.
Berries are also extremely popular, with several species native to the UK including Blackberry and Elderberry. They both fare well in partial shade. Gooseberry, raspberry and currants are also popular choices for growing in allotments and gardens, doing well throughout most of the UK if given a sunny position. Blueberry can cope with partial shade but does like an acidic soil and is best watered with rain water.