At the Allotment, Grow Your Own

Fruit Bushes for a Small Garden

Fruit bushes are a great addition to any garden or allotment. They produce tasty crops that even the fussiest of children will enjoy, look great, and don’t take up a lot of space. Most of them are also really easy to care for as well which means they suit people who aren’t great at gardening or have little time as well. I have a variety of fruit bushes in my garden and on my allotment. In my garden, all of the bushes are in containers, and they still give me a good crop so this proves that you don’t need a lot of space.

What fruit bushes should you get?

A lot of this comes down to personal choice. There is no point in buying a bush that grows fruit you don’t eat. Think about what you like and enjoy eating. This is what we have in our garden and allotment:

  • Blueberry – These are my daughters favourite fruit and it was our first ever venture into growing our own food. We brought the bushes when she was a little girl and over a decade later she will still eat them straight from the bush if the birds don’t beat her to them! Blueberry bushes are fairly easy to grow but they do like acidic soil. You can buy special compost for them and a feeder as well. This is all I have done and we’ve never had any problem.
  • Fig – I LOVE figs but they are so expensive. When I discovered that you could buy bushes that grow in this country it was a bit of a game-changer for me! I brought three of them. Two are at the allotment but I do have one in my garden at home and now I can enjoy fresh figs! They taste AMAZING compared to the ones you buy in the supermarket! The bushes have the advantage of being quite pretty as well.
  • Blackcurrant – I wasn’t sure about getting blackcurrant bushes but they were reduced to clear so I thought I would give them a go. I am really glad that I did. We don’t really eat the fruits as they are but we do use them a lot in recipes. We make a lovely blackcurrant jam and blackcurrant wine is pretty tasty as well.
  • Raspberry – Raspberries are another delicious fruit that is expensive to buy so it is worth having the canes for. They do take up a lot of space compared to other fruits, and they spread as well. Mine are at the allotment because they don’t do particularly well in containers. However, it has definitely been worth giving up some space on my plot for them.
  • Goji Berry – This is a bit of a weird one. I grow this because I was given the bush as a gift. I am undecided about whether I like the taste of the berry even if they are considered a superfood! Instead, I must admit I have used them to make facemasks and to feed the birds!
  • Kiwi – Kiwi fruits are another firm favourite in this house. We brought two bushes and now have one in the garden and one at the allotment. It is really important that you buy self- fertilising bushes else you need a male and a female plant to get any fruit at all! They’re easy to grow, low maintenance and will happily grow to the size of the container that you put them in. Like everything else, the freshness of the fruit means they are delicious!
  • Cranberry – I must admit I started growing cranberries purely because I tried a cranberry wine and loved it. We did have homemade cranberry sauce with our Christmas dinner as well which was nice but I don’t think I’ll make it again (mostly because we don’t have turkey on the big day!). However, I will be making copious amounts of cranberry wine that probably won’t last very long!
  • Gooseberry – I grow gooseberries for my Nan. She told me that as a little girl she had them in her garden. It was one of the last times she shared memories with me before dementia stole them from her so I brought a gooseberry bush in honour of her. I have made jam and wine using them and gave a lot away.
  • Strawberries – I have saved the best for last! There is nothing that compare to a freshly picked, home grown strawberry. The taste is out of this world! Strawberries are the quintessential taste of the English summer and homegrown ones are the very best! Strawberries are really easy to grow as well! I have mine in a special strawberry planter that I brought from Primrose. It wasn’t cheap but it’s a few years old now and still going strong! And it protects my plants from slugs and other nasties that might want to eat them!