I was just talking to my brother and realized I should share good internet sources for edible landscaping plants. He has a lot to do with his 10 acres and is able to explore some areas of farming that I can’t so it’s interesting to bounce ideas off one another. He expressed a concern to me that he wants to plant 50 fruit trees in bioswales and the cost is prohibitive at $20 per plant. There are many good sources of edible trees and shrubs out there online some with considerably better prices than that. I recommended Sandusky Valley for what he is planning to do at $3-5 per plant it would be a much more reasonable endeavor.
This is my main standby. Basically you get a rooted cutting from these people, but they are healthy and good plants. You have to be patient though. With plants this small it will be a few years at least until you see fruit or nuts. The cost can’t be beat though. If I were to open a retail location for edibles, I would probably order my stock here to pot up for the nursery. One of the main advantages of this site is they occasionally have the super dwarf cherries and they have hazelnuts in two varieties. Both of these plants are good choices for limited space. The hazelnuts do take up some space, but if you want nuts in a limited space, they are the way to go. Most nuts are giant trees. Other neat plants I’ve picked up here and are doing well in my yard are guomi, aronia berry, prinsepia berry, and lycopene berry.
If you are looking to increase the output of your yard, edible landscaping is the way to go. One of my favorite and most attractive hedges is made up of black currant bushes. They are very attractive. Many others can provide an aesthetically appealing look for your yard as well. There are some Korean sour cherries that only get about three feet high and yield heavily. Vines can provide kiwi, grapes, hops, chocolate fruit, and any number of other things. The possibilities are limitless. With the prices that Sandusky Valley offers, it doesn’t cost much at all to experiment. You can start with just a few plants put in here and there for around $20.
This may be cheaper or the second cheapest source depending upon what you
want to buy. I never think of the Arbor Day Foundation as a plant source and forget about it a lot. If you join you get some free trees and I like the organization. The fruit trees are about half the cost of normal trees on the market and the money goes for a good cause. I have planted other trees from this source, but never any fruit trees so I’m not sure what their quality is.
I can’t say enough good things about Stark Bros. They are local to St. Louis. Customer service is one of their specialties. They replace plants promptly and are not terribly particular about why the plant died. These are the best quality plants I’ve ever gotten and they have a decent selection. If you have never had a Candycrisp apple, you are missing out. Candycrisp are AMAZING and better than any candy honestly. I could eat them UP! I got 6 or 8 off my tree last year and it was the second year I had it in the ground. Crossing my fingers for a better harvest this year. I can also recommend the Sweetheart Apricot from here. Delicious and heavy yielding. I lost mine last year to some crazy beetle that ate through the trunk, so I’m going to wait a few years and replant it. Very fair pricing. Quality healthy stock.
I like this company. They have some random odds and ends of the possible fruit world. I picked up my medlar trees from them. They have an excellent catalog. It is a beautiful thing and I love getting it in the mail. Their customer service is not so good. When I have dealt with them, they have been terse and unwilling to replace dead plants. Because they offer what they offer, I’m willing to deal with that on the rare occasion that it is needed. Prices are a little higher than most, but they have rare plants. This is one of the sites I used to plan the landscaping in my yard.
The mecca of edible landscaping has to be One Green World. These people have the oddest and most amazing things. They also have an amazing catalog that is well worth getting. It will get you in trouble though. Lingonberries, low growing raspberries, medlars, and all sorts of berries I’m sure you’ve never heard of. I think I got my honey berries from this source. This is a fantasy wonderland of landscaping ideas for me. Again the prices are higher, but the plants are very healthy and the selection is unmatched anywhere else.