Pip Fruit


Apples & Pears


Growing your own fruit is becoming increasingly popular as the flavour of home grown edibles always tastes better plus you have satisfaction of knowing that your family is eating fresh and healthy produce.


Getting Started

Pip Fruit includes all your apples, pears, quinces and nashi and winter is the best time to plant as the trees are dormant.

  • Apples are all self-fertile and there are many different varieties for eating and cooking apples perfect for the home garden. Apples are harvested from February to April and most trees take a few years from planting till they bear fruit.
  • Pears. There are some pear varieties which are self-fertile but most are not and therefore require another variety for pollination. Pears ripen from mid-summer to early autumn and also take a few years from the time of planting till they fruit.
  • The Nashi or Japanese pear is similar to the pear and also requires another variety for pollination. Pears and Nashi can cross pollinate each other.
  • All Quince are self-fertile and is an excellent tree for the home garden. The fruit is most commonly used for marmalades and jellies.


Where to plant

Fruit trees are best planted in an open sunny area protected from strong winds. Fruit trees can be planted amongst other plants in your garden, in an orchard, in large pots or wine barrels or if you have a sunny fence or wall, espalier the tree.


How to plant

When planting, dig a hole that is big enough for all the roots, but make sure the graft is above the ground. Put a large handful of sheep pellets in the hole as you plant your fruit tree. Water the tree in well.

We recommend staking the tree when young.


Espalier training

Espalier is a form of training the fruit tree to grow along a wall or a fence.  This keeps the fruit tree small but still ensures great yields from your pip fruit. trees Pip fruit is espaliered horizontally.

  • To do this, cut the central leader off at the height of the first wire or fence railing in late autumn.
  • New growth will sprout from here and once the new stems are about 10cm in length, tie two of the strongest down horizontally using a fabric tie and allow one other to grow upwards.
  • Once the stem growing upwards reaches the next wire repeat the process.



Apples, pears, nashi and quinces should be pruned in late winter into a vase shape by cutting out the central leader as shown in the diagram. This allows light into the tree which enhances fruit production.



Apples, pears, nashi and quinces fruit on spurs. Spurs are short stubby growths attached to the main branches. Pip fruit can fruit on the same spurs for many years.



  • Trees will need to be watered during dry periods.
  • Use a compost as a mulch around the base of the tree. This will help water retention.
  • Apply Fruit Food in Autumn and Spring around the drip line and water in.


Plant protection

Preventing pests and diseases from attacking your fruit trees is always better than trying to cure them. Below  there is a spray guide for you to follow for pest and disease prevention.

  • The main pest which attacks pip-fruit is codling moth.  The grub feeds inside the apple and can be identified by the black frass. To determine when the moths are flying, hang pheromone traps in the tree. Note that the pheromone traps are only used to identify when the moths are around they will not destroy the population.
  • Success Naturalyte is great for dealing with this problem.
  • Mites and aphids are minor pests but can also feed on your fruit trees. Success will also deal to these pests.
  • Fugal diseases like black spot and powdery mildew can be a problem. Conqueror Oil, Champ Copper and Fungus Fighter are perfect for preventing and curing these problems.


Season Products

Autumn:    At leaf fall

Yates Champ Copper at double strength
Winter:       When Dormant Champ Copper with Conqueror Oil

Spring:       Green tip

            :        Fruit set

Champ Copper

Greenguard plus Success Naturalyte

Summer:  At 3 week intervals till harvest

Greenguard plus success. Alternate application of Fugus Fighter with Mavrik.




You may need to put bird netting over the trees as the fruit ripens, as birds love their apples and pears too.