Fruit – Espaliering

Q: I’m learning about growing fruit and I see that in England they are grown against walls in a fan shape. Is there a reason we don’t do this in the Southeast?

A: Training fruit trees to grow in a narrow space is called espaliering. One big reason this practice is common in European home gardens is their space is more limited than ours. There’s no reason it can’t be done here. All you need is a south- or west-facing wall, stiff wire and fence staples. Semi-dwarf trees are best for espaliering. You’ll learn a lot about pruning as you shape the tree. You can train them to grow in a fan, candelabra, or serpentine shape. I have details at xrl.us/espalier