August break, Day 28


Today’s prompt for the August Break 2014 is “something new” and these little apples fill the bill. The tree is new too. We planted it two years ago, but it’s not growing as you might imagine, as a stand-alone tree.  We are growing it “espalier-style” up the trellis beside our deck.

The term “espalier” refers to the ancient art of training fruit trees to grow against a wall or flat surface. You prune and tie branches to a frame, often in decorative patterns. This method was often used in traditional walled kitchen gardens and is perfectly suited to growing fruit in the smaller garden.

We had a very tiny city garden in Ottawa before we moved and we grew our first espaliered apple tree against a brick wall in our meditation garden there.

In a temperate climate, planting next to a wall can reflect more sunlight and retain heat overnight. This seems to allow the season to be extended so that fruit has more time to mature.

It was so successful that we decided to do it again at our new house. The young Cortland tree has filled in nicely against the trellis providing not only fruit this year, but the privacy of a nice green screen for our deck.

This summer we installed two more trellises in our backyard renovation project so next year we will be adding two more espaliered fruit trees — an apple and maybe a plum.

How to espalier fruit trees.


4 thoughts on “August break, Day 28

  1. Looks like you are going to have a nice harvest and many apple pies in your future! Love how you captured those beauties too with that lovely bokeh!

  2. It’s a lovely photo and the bokeh is very pretty. I found a Tulip tree that was done that way last year. I bet your apple tree will look gorgeous in bloom next year.

  3. One of my Dutch cousins runs a market garden enclosed in a large brick-walled courtyard. Espaliered fruit trees line all the walls to striking effect. How wonderful that you’re doing this, Sherry! And a beautiful composition, with the light glinting in the upper left side, suggesting the memory of apple blossoms. xo

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