The Fruit Tree Handbook

By Ben Pike

The Fruit Tree Handbook
Paperback, 352 pages £16.95
Published: 13th October 2011
ISBN: 9781900322744
Format: 234mm x 168mm

Click here to see ebook versions available
Published: 12th November 2011
ISBN: 9780857840417
Published: 5th July 2012
ISBN: 9780857841001

AI Sheets: Fruit Tree Handbook AI.pdf
Author Information: Ben Pike Author Info.pdf
Resources: The_Fruit_Tree_Handbook_Blad_final.pdf

The Fruit Tree Handbook is a clear, practical guide for both amateur and expert. It explains all you need to know in order to grow delicious fruit, from designing your orchard and planting your trees to harvesting your produce.

Apples, pears, plums, cherries, apricots, peaches and nectarines, as well as less common fruits such as mulberries, medlars and figs, are covered in detail, with recommended varieties of each. The book describes all the pest and disease problems you may encounter and advises on how to deal with them. It explains about choosing rootstocks and suitable varieties for your needs, and illuminates the mysteries of pruning with step-by-step instructions and detailed diagrams. It features beautiful pictures throughout.

The Fruit Tree Handbook conveys a deep respect for the natural world, showing how to cultivate healthy trees through good management, and also includes chapters on restoring an old orchard and setting up a community orchard. Whether you are planting a few trees in your garden or 50 trees in a field, this book provides the expert guidance you need to look after your trees – and be rewarded with basketfuls of luscious fruit at harvest time.


 PART ONE: Preparation, planning and planting

1    The site of your orchard

2    Rootstocks

3    Pollination, flowering and fruit development

4    Choosing fruit trees

5    Planning your orchard

6    Buying and planting trees

 PART TWO: Fruit tree management

7    Caring for your trees

8    Pruning fruit trees

9    Problems of fruit trees


PART THREE: The fruits

10  Apples

11  Pears

12  Plums

13  Cherries

14  Peaches and nectarines

15  Apricots

16  Other fruits

 PART FOUR: Traditional orchards

17  Restoring a neglected orchard

18  Community orchards




 "You'll need an extra season to make best use of all the advice contained in this comprehensive, practical book. It will help you to choose your fruit trees and rootstocks, situate your orchard, prune your trees and keep them healthy. It is bursting with well-illustrated guidance, generously given from someone who knows orchards and cares about the wildlife that they can support.”   

- Sue Clifford & Angela King - Common Ground

" The Fruit Tree Handbook is a really well-organised, approachable yet thorough guide to sourcing, planting and caring for fruit trees. It's a must for anyone considering anything from a couple of trees to an orchard.”

- Mark Diacono - River Cottage Head Gardener

"If you’ve ever thought about turning an unproductive grassy area into an orchard and then quietly filed it away under 'wouldn't know where to start', it may be time for a rethink. The Fruit Tree Handbook is fairly hefty for a paperback but fruit growing is a big topic and deserves the space. All too often 'top fruit' [apples, pears, plums etc] is relegated to a couple of chapters in a general fruit book, losing out to the easy virtues of strawberries and other soft fruit. Given such cramped conditions, it's small wonder that people get confused about pollination so a well-written specialist book like this one is a welcome addition to my bookshelf."

- The Ecologist - October 2011

"No matter how small your garden, if you want to grow fruit, this guide will help you on your way with excellent photos and clear diagrams."

- Dobies of Devon

"Whether you are planting a few trees in your garden or 50 trees in a field, you will find all you need to know to design and manage your own orchard."

- Devon Country Gardener - October 2011

“At last! A book about growing fruit with an organic approach, written for British conditions and with home fruit growers rather than professionals in mind. To my knowledge it’s the first book that ticks all three boxes but, just as important, it’s very good.”

- Patrick Whitefield - Permaculture Magazine

"An excellent book. Full of all sorts of useful information for lovers of fruit trees, from, lovely pictures and clear illustrations. It is beautifully laid out, simple to follow and good and accurate to read. Congratulations to you, Ben Pike and Green Books for a first rate book."

- Dorset Cider Blog

"Brilliant work, beautifully presented."

- Allotment Blog

Ben Pike is an orchard consultant and writer, and is head gardener on the Sharpham Estate in Devon, where he looks after the walled fruit and vegetable garden as well as two orchards containing 150 fruit trees.  In his spare time he helps to run Orchard Link, an organisation that supports orchard owners and the preservation of old orchards.  There is nothing he loves more at weekends than to run old apple presses.

Publication Details:

Binding: Paperback, 352 pages
ISBN: 9781900322744
Format: 234mm x 168mm
Full colour

Binding: Electronic book text
ISBN: 9780857840417
Format: PDF

Binding: Electronic book text
ISBN: 9780857841001
Format: EPUB

BISAC Code:  GAR005000, GAR025000
Imprint: Green Books

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