Skip to main content

Want to make your neighbors jealous? Here are the best spring fruits to grow

Plant these fruits this spring for a tasty harvest

Spring is a favorite season for many gardeners, and for good reason! The plants begin to wake up, the ground thaws, and you can begin planning and planting your next garden. There are plenty of plants to choose from, but there’s nothing quite like fruit fresh from your own garden. If a ripe, juicy berry or piece of fruit sounds perfect to you, then keep reading! Here are what we believe are the best spring fruits to plant this season, complete with care tips so you can tell at a glance which ones are right for your garden.

Blackberries ripening on the bush
adonyig/Pixabay

Blackberries

Ripe, juicy blackberries are a delicious treat, and they’re easy to grow. Plant these fruits in early spring and make sure they’re in full sun. Blackberries do best in rich, well-draining soil. Mixing compost into your soil can help significantly. Blackberries need roughly an inch of water each week, and they thrive in soil that is consistently moist but not soaking wet. Most blackberry varieties are ready for harvest in mid to late summer.

There are three types of blackberry: erect (bush-like), trailing (vine-like), and semi-erect (halfway between erect and trailing). Trailing and semi-erect varieties benefit from being trellised. Trailing varieties tend to produce larger harvests, larger berries, and more flavorful berries. However, they’re also more vulnerable to damage and disease. Erect varieties tend to produce smaller harvests, with smaller, less flavorful berries, but are much sturdier. Semi-erect varieties are somewhat sturdy, with large harvests of berries that may not be as flavorful as trailing varieties.

Figs ripening on a tree
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Figs

Fig trees take a little longer to grow, but they’re well worth the wait. Start by planting them in early spring. You can find fig saplings in nurseries or online; it’s easier to start from a sapling than from seeds. Plant them in full sun in an area with well-draining soil. Figs are less picky about soil types than other fruit trees, but they do best in soil with plenty of organic matter. Adding compost can help with that. Be sure to plant them away from any buildings, as they can grow fairly large.

During winter, protect young fig trees from the cold with mulch, plant covers, or windbreaks. You can also grow young fig trees in containers and bring them inside during winter. In summer, feed them nitrogen-rich fertilizer to speed their growth. Fig trees typically take three or four years before they’re ready to harvest. Before this, they may produce some fruit, but it typically will not ripen.

A row of honeydew melons growing on vines
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Honeydew melons

Honeydews need warm weather to grow, so they’re typically planted in mid to late spring. However, if you live in an area with warmer winters and less frost, then you may be able to plant them in early spring alongside your blackberries and figs! Whether early, mid, or late spring, plant them in full sun.

In addition to heat, honeydews need moisture. Setting up a drip irrigation system and applying a layer of mulch under them can help tremendously with this. Make sure your honeydews have room to spread out or trellis them. Most honeydew varieties are ready to harvest after two and a half to three months.

Mulberries ripening on the bush
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Mulberries

Mulberries aren’t available commercially as much as other berries due to their fragility, so there’s a good chance you’ve never tasted one. They’re sweet, a little tart, and incredibly juicy. Mulberries grow on medium-sized trees, so they need 10 to 20 feet of space. They can grow in full or partial sun and are tolerant of most soil types, including poor soil.

Keep your soil evenly moist while your mulberry tree grows. Adding a layer of mulch around it can increase your soil’s water retention, as well as suppressing weeds. It can take two or three years for a mulberry tree to begin producing fruit, but some varieties can fruit earlier. Mulberries are usually ready for harvest in mid to late summer, and they produce quite a bit of fruit.

A tree growing pawpaw fruit
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Pawpaw

Pawpaw trees are native to North Carolina, and their incredibly soft texture means you won’t see them on grocery store shelves. They’re sweet and creamy, with a distinctly tropical taste. Before planting, be sure you have the right plant! A few different fruits are referred to as pawpaws, so make sure you have Asimina triloba. Although it looks and tastes tropical, pawpaw trees are hardy in zones 5 through 9.

Choose a location with full sun and protection from any harsh or strong winds. Pawpaw trees grow best in rich, well-draining soil. Mix compost or leaf mulch into your soil before planting if your soil is poor. Pawpaw trees can grow fairly large but you can keep them in check through pruning. Pawpaws are not self-pollinating, so two or three trees are necessary to ensure your tree fruits. Harvest time for pawpaws is typically in late summer or early fall.

Plant these five fruits this spring for a varied and delicious harvest! Spring is a perfect time to plant many different plants, so why not mix things up? Plant some of your favorites right alongside a few new ones. Whether you plant everything on this list, just a few of them, or even none at all, enjoy your spring garden and the harvest that comes along with it. After all, there are few things sweeter than the fruits of your own labor.

Editors' Recommendations

Cayla Leonard
Cayla Leonard is a writer from North Carolina who is passionate about plants.  She enjoys reading and writing fiction and…
Make sure your hydrangeas have the best blooms by pruning them properly
The right way to prune hydrangeas
Purple and blue hydrangeas

Hydrangeas are beautiful and interesting flowers. They change color based on the pH of the soil, making them a unique and fascinating addition to most gardens. They’re easy to grow and propagate, make wonderful cut flowers, and can even be grown in containers. If you want to add them to your garden, then you'll need to know how to prune hydrangeas. Although cutting a plant can be intimidating, it's surprisingly simple once you know what to do. This comprehensive guide will help you get started.

Why would you want to prune hydrangeas?
To keep your garden space looking beautiful, it's a good idea to stay on top of pruning your hydrangeas. Hydrangeas can grow fairly quickly, averaging a growth rate of 2 feet per year. Pruning your hydrangeas helps you shape your bush and remove dead or crossing stems.

Read more
Are avocados vegetables or fruits? We have your answers
The answer is more complicated than you think
Avocados growing on a tree

Avocados are delicious and versatile plants used for all sorts of things, from food to skin care. The question of the day isn’t how to use avocados, though. Instead, it’s what they are: Are avocados vegetables or fruits? We eat them on sandwiches and as sides, like vegetables, but they also grow on trees, like fruit. If you’re not sure of the answer, or aren’t sure why it matters, then you’re in the right place! We’ll give you a rundown on the difference between fruits and vegetables, what category avocados fall into, and why it should matter to you.

What's the difference between fruits and vegetables?
The distinction between fruits and vegetables actually comes down to a difference in botanical and culinary classifications. Fruits are a certain part of a plant, which means that no matter what plant you’re looking at, if it grows fruit, the fruit will form in the same place and way. Fruits are produced by a plant to carry its seeds, and they form at the base of the flower after it's been pollinated.

Read more
Why mulching might be the best option for your old Christmas tree
Turn your Christmas tree into eco-friendly mulch
Person carrying old Christmas tree

The gifts have been exchanged, the parties have ended, and you're ushering your relatives out the door so you can enjoy the last of the holiday season in peace. There's just one lingering loose end to tie up: What in the world are you going to do with that huge, old Christmas tree?

If you have an artificial tree that’s still in good shape, the answer is simple — just pack it back into the box and put it into the attic or garage for another year. What about a natural tree, though? With environmental sustainability an ever-growing consideration for consumers, it’s no longer as simple as tossing the tree into the next available garbage truck.

Read more