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Free fruit Trees in Public Places

    72 responses

Correy starts with ...
I believe that local councils should be planting fruit trees rather then flowers, shade trees etc. If you know of a council where:

1) Town Planning Incorporates Public Fruit Trees.

2) You or friends have lobbied councils to plant fruit trees.

3) You planted fruit trees in public places yourself assuming it would be ok.

4) You tried to get a council to plant fruit trees but was rejected.

I would love to hear your experience below.

Video: Motivation from River Cottage Autumn on the topic.


* You can watch the full episode on abc iview here:
http://www.abc.net.au/iview/#/view/455675
Urban Tree Change
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Brisbane
30th October 2009 1:14am
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Original Post was last edited: 30th October 2009 12:29pm
Ellen says...
yeah, I think it is such a waste of spaces to plant those useless gum trees, during the hot summer heat waves months it only causes those bush fires, such a hazard.

I wish my council would permit me to plant fruit trees beside those foot paths instead of making us put on turfs.
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Ellen
Smithfield
30th October 2009 4:31am
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Polly says...
Maybe I'm being negative but when I drive along the roads of NSW and see untended fruit trees such as apples I wonder if this is just a reservoir for fruit fly. I agree with your proposition BUT only if they will not be a pest reservoir. It's hard enough now managing pests with the untended garden fruiting trees that remain in suburban backyards.
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Polly
Newcastle
30th October 2009 9:05am
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HappyEarth says...
Urban food production is essential for a sustainable future.

Hey Correy, just saw this clip on abc news regarding urban food growing in Chippendale, Sydney:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/video/2009/10/29/2727866.htm

Down here in Wollongong we hoping to implement a fruit street tree planting with Wollongong city council. Ill let you know how it all goes :)

Rich
www.happyearth.com.au
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HappyEarth
Wollongong
30th October 2009 11:00am
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Kath says...
Ellen,
I love my fruit trees but please don't under value the importance of our native species. Gum trees provide hollows for homes and are rich in nectar also providing food for entire ecosystems of native species not to mention our iconic koala. What we need is a balanced approach so we have food for all, ourselves and our native birds and animals.

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Kath
Cawongla
30th October 2009 11:38am
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Ellen says...
don't get me wrong Kath, I do understand the balance and the importance of it, but there is no need for the front of my house to have 4 of them, and I am in the middle of a highway, yet 50 yards away is a little park.

Do you know what it's like with all those branches broken off when big winds come?, last time when we have one of those mini storm one got uprooted and fell on top of my car, my insurance refuse to cover for it, even though it was an act of nature.
We were not allow to trim off dead branches, and it it had overgrown into our overhead electrical wirings supplying into our house. Every time it is windy, it dangling wavy with the winds, our electricals appliances in the house flickering on and off as it goes with it. we'd call the council, and it would take 9months to a year before those folks would come down and trim some off.
I use to enjoy those morning sunlight rays piercing through my windows in the morning it warm up the house, now I don't get that any more b/c those overgrown gum trees on the foot path planted by the council had blocked it off completely .
After each rainy session we have, my front yard are covered with dead small branches, I cannot see the grass any more.
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Ellen
Smithfield
30th October 2009 12:06pm
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Correy says...
Happy Earth:
Fantastic I added it to our newsletter

Which should get emailed out soon.
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Brisbane
30th October 2009 12:30pm
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CJ says...
Hi Kath, I completely agree with you. Unfortunately our native species are quite undervalued by developers. There are a lot of trees that aren't suitable for urban areas (such as Ellen's pesky gums!) but there are many more choices that are.

The public fruit trees is an interesting concept but I would worry about maintenance. Councils (in WA at least) like as little maintenance as possible.
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3
Mandurah WA
30th October 2009 12:54pm
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Itdepends says...
Maintenance = money. How many ratepayers don't want there rates to be as little as possible?

My concerns would be the fallen fruit, diseases etc- and you'd have to be careful what you did plant. A lot of them wouldn't fruit well without irrigation during the summer (at least over here they wouldn't).
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30th October 2009 3:29pm
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J R says...
Shahtoot Mulberry is a delicious fruit-fly free fruit tree for nature strips,but it has huge long roots,so would a Daley's dwarf mulberry be better?
I planted a Shahtoot,then the council pulled it up a few weeks later.

Wicked.
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30th October 2009 3:36pm
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Diana says...
I have seen mulberries, edible lillypillies, and rosemary planted in public spaces (uni campus and local school). There are macadamias as street trees at Mt Glorious. I have heard of wine palms, date palms, and ice cream bean as park and street trees. None of those need much maintenance or water when established, or get pests. I think arrowroot, lemongrass, bay tree, and other tough, large herbs would be OK.

Diana.
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30th October 2009 10:36pm
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Gus says...
We are trying to start an edible demonstration garden on campus he at uni. (La Trobe, Bendigo).

It's slowly getting there.

That's not quite the question asked, but similar.
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Gus1
Bendigo
30th October 2009 10:43pm
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paula says...
I think it is a great idea - maintenence, pests, litigation notwithstanding. :)

Byron Shire council is doing something along these lines, and so is manchester.

http://www.byron.nsw.gov.au/food-production

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1172446/The-city-thats-turning-giant-allotment-free-produce-all.html
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paula2
Australia
31st October 2009 8:19am
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Manda says...
I think this is an awesome concept... I loved the river cottage eposide about it it made me feel very inspired.
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Perth, WA
31st October 2009 5:27pm
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amanda says...
I try to have a balance in my garden - I have food plants for the birds, bees, lizards etc and food plants for us.

This is possible everywhere and I feel the biodiversity of my garden results in very few serious pest problems.
EG: I have quite a lot of bob-tails (blue tongues/stumpy tails) in my garden and they clean up most of the fallen fruit. OK - a mulberry is not native - but me and my bob-tails don't mind! :)
Nature seems to adapt and find it's own way of filling every niche, man made or not.
I would like to see more "habitats" for our fauna - which is losing precious ground every day. This can co-exist with the needs of people surely?
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amanda19
Geraldton. WA
1st November 2009 10:40am
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Elf says...
Great idea, I'm a strong supporter of that concept.
Straggly bottlebrush street trees look super unsightly and humungous gums street trees can be dangerous. I know native trees are important and all, but koalas don't dwell in street trees, though Magpies and I'm sure other things do.
I like the idea of fruit fly resistant fruit trees, no need to make that problem worse - it's such a shame for pomes and stonefruit :(

Bushtucker trees get my vote too. I think we are tragically undereducated about our native foods. I know next to nothing.

Love the Byron plan. I stumbled on a blog from Norfolk Island recently and they are pretty much self sufficient food wise because they have very strict quarantine laws. It would be great if you could buy most of your fruit and veg from mostly local sources and learn to live with seasonal foods. It's more normal, isn't it?

I went to the local farmer's market for the first time on the weekend hoping for wads of local fruit and veg, but apart from $6 a kg apples and pears and very expensive strawberries there was hardly any f & v :( I will keep going, it might change over the seasons.

blah blah :)
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Elf
Albury
1st November 2009 5:36pm
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Wayne says...
I'm sorry, but I'm going to be the odd one out here, I don't think fruit trees have any place in the public arena. Do you think that the fruit would ever get to ripen before the people had it stripped from the tree.

It is a shame but that's the way some people are
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Wayne
Mackay QLD
1st November 2009 7:00pm
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Original Post was last edited: 1st November 2009 7:04pm
anonymous says...
Yes, you are definitely.
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Mackay
1st November 2009 8:17pm
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Julie says...
My concern is that people start off really keen, water them, feed them etc.

Then they move, or get too old, or die, and the next person isn't interested.

I see this often where I live - not in street trees, but backyards. Someone plants fruit trees, later sells the house, and the next person can't be bothered, or knows nothing about gardening. Fruit fly-infested fruit lies on the ground - you can imagine what the local orchardists think of that!

So while I think it's a lovely idea, I don't think it's practical. As it is on council land, who does the fruit belong to?

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Roleystone WA
1st November 2009 10:08pm
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Albert Einstein says...
FRUIT CITY: a living growing map of the fruit trees in public spaces in London

http://www.fruitcity.co.uk/

http://www.fruitcity.co.uk/map/

http://www.fruitcity.co.uk/species/

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Fruit Forest Lane,Fruitville
1st November 2009 10:45pm
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Simon says...
I believe that public fruit trees will cretae a fruit fly nightmare. My experience has been that nut trees and herb plantings are more productive in a public space.
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Simon9
Fountaindale
2nd November 2009 9:00am
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Wayne says...
It would be nice to have some native trees to encourage some Koalas to come visit, see how relaxed this guy is.
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Wayne
Mackay QLD
2nd November 2009 11:26am
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Kath says...
Kyogle has a little pecan plantation on the outskirts of town and during nut season it always has visitors picking up the nuts for free.
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Kath
Cawongla
2nd November 2009 3:17pm
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Jimmy says...
Most shires in Perth specifically will not allow Macadamias as street trees due to the possibility that people will slip over on the round nuts...

Told to me by Peter Coppin.
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Jimmy
Perth
2nd November 2009 4:05pm
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Wayne says...
By memory there are a lot of nut trees in Canberra
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Wayne
Mackay QLD
2nd November 2009 4:08pm
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Jane says...
Macadamias need to be planted along the edges of bush parks so the nuts don't drop on the footpaths, and yet people can se them and access them if they wish. All street trees need to be planted so they are not dropping fruit, seeds, nuts, leaves onto cars or houses or making footpaths slippery: if sensible consideration for situational differences is the norm then practical solutions for everybody, could be negotiable. Forums such as this provide valuable conversations for establishing guidelines for consideration when putting forth proposals or simply planting yourself. well done folks.
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2nd November 2009 9:47pm
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Itdepends says...
Jane- do you work for a local council or govt organisation?
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Jessica says...
I have always suggested this to my husband & we tried to think as to why the councils were NOT doing this, our reasoning was potential poisoning if passerby's ate sprayed fruit & a loss of income for growers if the street scaping became large scale. I would like to see the the 'ideal' of people picking free fruit as the walked the streets, but there are potential drawbacks.
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5th November 2009 10:22am
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M Nash says...
I'm sorry (also) to be a negative voice.
But you are living in la la land.
Growing fruit trees is not going to "Save the future" Nor is it going to feed the community. Nor are the "Community Gardens"
Fruit trees need methodical care, If they are in in public domain they will become wild or infested. I dont want my rates to be hyked up to make the local dooms sayers and greenies feel all googy inside.
What we need is productive farmers IN AUSTRALIA growing our fruit and a community (Government) backing them up.
I don't have a problem for growing your own fruit trees in your own backyard, However, This comes with responsibility to ensure your lemons don't infect My lemons. Get my drift.
It is feral thinking and the cost of it should not be thrust upon the wider community to satisfy a Minority.
End rant, All good



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MNash1
Terranora
5th November 2009 11:02pm
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Tropicdude says...
I have to agree with Nash, no one loves fruits and fruit trees as much as me, but its not practical to have fruit trees planted all over the city and or the "burbs", city planners usually select trees for low maintenance, and for other attributes, like how the roots grow, can they handle drought, even whether they drop leaves all at once or over a long period of time, do they tolerate pollution etc. fruit trees need pruning, fertilizers and cleaning up after.

Now on community gardens, I do like these, I do not think they will save the planet but, these gardens will only attract those that like gardening anyway, it brings people together, they can make "eye sore" areas into beautiful places. and of course the added benefit of fresh veggies and greens. I also like the idea of Urban farms ( hydroponics Aeroponics etc.) I know that not everything can be grown in the city but many things can, when you think of all the fuel used to transport veggies into the cities, it makes sense to grow these on roof tops of buildings. of course these would be commercial and profitable projects.

Who knows maybe someday we will have vertical city farms like this one:


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6th November 2009 6:13am
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Original Post was last edited: 6th November 2009 6:19am
Vicki says...
I like the idea in theory, but dont think it will work in the long run. It is 40 degrees C here today, and I have been flat out this week keeping my own trees and veg alive. Our government is allowing thousands of mature street trees to die due to water restrictions, so I cant see local councils putting in the money and effort to properly look after fruit trees, when they dont even look after the natives very well. The long lead time between planting and harvesting will also discourage authorities from investing in fruit trees. Of course citizens could make an effort to look after them, but people move, or dont want to use their water on public trees, or vandals (and possums) strip the trees before the fruit is ripe. Its a shame, but I dont think it's a realistic idea in this climate.
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vickib
Adelaide
15th November 2009 10:59am
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Rev says...
ok
so up here in NQ theres mango trees bloody everywhere
now the diffrence is between the south and the north is that theres still heaps of wildlife here
Fruitbats and parrots get the lions she or - everything
great if you want to eat fruitbats and parrots, you coul just sit on your deck with a blowgun an harvest the bounty

anyway interestingly the fruitfly isnt that bad here! noweher as bad as when i was in nthn NSW

i like the idea. but there are suitable trees and unsuitable trees for streets, and that list'll change with the areas

for example theres issues like disease, mess, spines, blah blah

if were going to have rules, they need to say who is responsible for what, and what happen if they dont maintain it

with education to give guidlines on the bst species

but not hard rules. i mean for heavens sake, councils arent even a lawful form of govt under the constitution! we cant hav them telling us what to do anymore.

ok so suggestions that ive seen work very well to follow
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Rev
North qld
25th November 2009 11:22pm
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Rev says...
Trees that look good, are productive
and dont cause much mess or harbour major diseases

( a major bias here for tropical plants as thats where i am, these are ones ive seen used already - except pimento and clove )

A grade

Bay trees
Pimento
Jaboticaba
Pommelo
Moringa
Santol
Agathi
Clove
Tamarind
Wine palm
Otaheite gooseberry
Jackfruit
breadfruit
Peanut tree (sterculia quadrifida)

B grade - single faults
Carry fruit fly- but are a minimal reservoir

curry leaf
Pawpaw

make a mess-

Olive
neem

or are hosts for disease for backyarders if not cared for-

Kaffir lime
Banana

IME
Mulberries def carry qld fruit fly
not seen them in shahtoot yet but M alba and M nigra definitely get struck somtimes severely

lets not forget edible landscping with perennial veggies

groundcovers
Lalot pepper - see the big ol fig at the sthn end of the esplanade, cairns with a big patch of lalot pepper - looks great
or lebanese cress
or Cuban oregano
or vegetable fern
in a wet spot i often see gotu kola and brahmi, they seem to be native up here
or just plain old taro

also
i have a bone to pick with the
pictures chosen above

the Poinciana (delonix regia) is one of the worlds mos stunning flowering trees,
it also, is a legume.
I think there is scope to not necessarily use the streets to grow food , but maybe to grow ferility.
I regularly bag up leaf fall from street trees
Ficus, neem, Acacia, Albizzia, Hibiscus etc
and they make the bulk of my bedding for a worm farm, to this i can add kitchen scraps
it makes great compost

as much as we need food garden, we also need the organic matter and nitrogen to sustain them, produced close as possible

i do like that many many street trees her are Ficus and tree legumes. Its gives us lots of good leaf litter to use

so dont bag non-fruit street trees, rater let look constructivley at how to reintegrate street trees into our urban ecology
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Rev
North qld
25th November 2009 11:52pm
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Sarah says...
I only have a little story to share. On 12.10.09 I and some friends parked our cars on Broughton Road, Artarmon to catch the train to the city. When returning I stopped, quite surprised to see a mulberry tree growing on the curb side (I assume this is council land?) It was about 1.5 metres high, healthy and full of green mulberries. I exclaimed to my friends what it was and how exciting it was to see it there. Interestingly, my friends said they had seen these massive trees near where they live at Marayong (near Breakfast creek) but didn't know what they were. They felt confident then to pick them once the berries were ready.
I think it is a brillant idea to plant food. I'm looking forward to reading and learning more. Sarah
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Sarah10
Baulkham Hills
26th November 2009 10:43pm
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Irena says...
I have planted an apple tree in the nature strip, as well as other trees.The Council has not objected and one opasser-by even came with equipment to prune it! The apples are enjoyed by many, even by the dogs being walked.
I have forwarded your newsletter to our council member in charge of Parks and Recreation.
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Irena
Lunceston,Tamania
27th November 2009 11:10am
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Itdepends says...
Mind you- isn't the apple isle free of fruit fly and codling moth?- two of the pests that might otherwise breed in an un treated fruiting street tree?
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29th November 2009 11:09pm
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clare says...
I am very interested in this - after seeing the River Cottage episode - its a great idea. The only trouble is - the fruit will get taken by the birds unless netted - so is it then a waste of effort?
Clare
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clare4
wa
2nd December 2009 12:34pm
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PeterC says...
There have been some good comments so far on both sides. What we need is a blend of suitable trees, both those that help our native environment and those that we can use.
High maintenance fruit trees or those that harbour exotic pests or diseases should be avoided (& that varies from state to state). In WA there are many useable tree species - macadamia, pecan, mulberry, Eureka lemon, etc.
There is one council in Perth who have banned macadamias from verges, but who are still planting Queensland box (Lophostemon confertus) - how silly is that? So Box seeds are OK but macadamias aren't? What about all Eucalyt seeds (gumnuts)?
I think the answer is for all local government bodies to foster community food gardens that include fruit trees.
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PeterC
Perth
2nd December 2009 6:35pm
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Wayne says...
Peter, our local council has Tamrind trees on some public areas, I don't know if they would suit everywhere and I don't know if most people know what they are
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Wayne
Mackay QLD
2nd December 2009 8:52pm
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Roger says...
Hi all, some - mostly all good comments.Most of the fruit from my 2 to 3 thousand tropical fruit trees is eaten by the flying foxes and my few cows eat what falls, not such a big loss as the return is pretty minimal all things taken into account. My biggest campaign has been to slow up the killing of coconut trees in public places and even encouraging the planting of more - see one of my letter's to the editor attached- in between tripping around the pacific and Cape York Peninsula encouraging locals to plant and maintain more fruit trees. Probably the biggest issue is to select the best tree/plant for the location or modify the location to suit the plant. Best done by small groups of like minded people with access to good decision making information.
It is mango season up here and public place-mango trees are carpeted with fallen half eaten fruit - birds and flying foxes again. Good shade trees for the rest of the year.Our local council has been very active in planting various edible fruit trees but unfortunately when the cyclones come and damage them it is easier to chop them out. I could go on but a last point for today was the great crops of roadside guava during the papaya fruit fly eradication years up here in coastal Far north Queensland.
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RogerG1
Innisfail
7th December 2009 8:15pm
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hilary says...
Public fruit trees will be unpopular with the way-too-powerful business "community". They like it when you buy your fruit instead. What they don't understand is that public fruit trees will help poor people the most and poor people currently don't buy fruit because it's too expensive. It would be smart to get local nurseries on the fruit tree bandwagon.
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hilary1
USA
22nd March 2010 5:05pm
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CJ says...
I would question how much public fruit trees will help the truly impoverished. The most likely place for such a program to work is "the suburbs", and these are not the sort of places that welcome the poor.
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WA
23rd March 2010 1:28pm
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Mick says...
Yes, I agree with the concept of planting fruit trees. I am always talking to the local council gardeners to put in Indigenous plants also.

Mick
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South Lismore
19th August 2010 9:02am
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rev says...
Hey Roger
you prob know this already but cocos nucefera is native to australia
not only was it present when europeans arrived,
but there are fossil remains of this plant in chinchilla qld dating to 2 million years ago (Digby 1995)
www-public.jcu.edu.au/idc/groups/public/documents/.../jcuprd_048609.pdf

i understand why they arent planted over public walkways
but its a mindnumbing consequence of the second most litigious society on the planet that we are chopping them

i encourage more plantings too
esp dwarf varieties, so i can reach them! im far too european built to shimmy up a trunk lol
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Rev
north qld
26th August 2010 5:25pm
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rev says...
on the buses every day i see so many fruit, spice and nut trees here in public access
i depend on it - where else can i get my seed from!

Moringa, cinnamon, Citrus, Phyllanthus acidus, coconut, Saba nut, curry tree, kaffir lime, Guava, Macadamia, coconut, Jelly palm, Breadfruit, Noni, Lemon myrtle, Szyzygium cumini, pomegranate, Jackfruit and many more

i really think its hsould be official policy, its just needs a properly funded research project to gather data from arborists and horticultralist to reccomend a suit of species deemed suitable and in the public interest

not sure if i mentione dit earlier but id so love to see a few people buy some allspice trees for their front verge. An act of giving to the community - you need several male and female to get pimentos
and one female tree would supply a suburb! but its going to create i think, potentially a closer knit suburb

i love private property. But the question is how do we make that a benefit and not a prison? how shall we manage the commons?
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Rev
north qld
26th August 2010 5:33pm
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Roger says...
Hi rev. Yes you are correct about the Australian native coconuts. Attached are two photos one of a common cultivated nut and the other, more elongated nut, is from descendants of palms growing and fruiting in Australia in pre european times. Big pity the National parks and other ill-informed people have cut so many of these historic palms out.Any way I have a few planted in my collection.
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RogerG1
Innisfail
9th September 2010 2:55pm
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Marksman says...
Hi all,

Lots of great suggestions with pros and cons for fruit trees, I have always thought that many street spaces could be used to plant fruit trees!

What does everyone think of the suitability of planting an avocado as a street tree???
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Marksman
Brisbane
31st October 2010 3:57pm
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BJ says...
There are a few street avocados in new farm, near the burger urge. Seems to do okay. A friend who lives just nearby gets a few fruit from it every now and then.
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Theposterformerlyknownas
Brisbane
31st October 2010 10:59pm
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Hayden says...
People who dislike flowering trees on the street have a look at the beautiful magnolias in kings langley sydney. Beautiful flowers!!! I think fruit trees on the street would not work even though I love the idea. Rotting fruit would stink! Flys maggots and fruit fly would swarm and they would grow wild. If a person wants one outside their house I think they should be allowed to if they keep them in bonsai bags in the ground so if they decide to move they can be taken as well so that only people who want them have them.
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Hayden1
Central coast nsw
1st November 2010 12:21am
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Reba says...
I think the thing that is over looked here, is that the trees featured in the river cottage ep are ESTABLISHED trees, these trees ARE sitting unattended with rotting fruit, if these people were not picking this fruit it would be currently causing some of the harm listed here.

I think before 'planting of new trees' there needs to be an investigation into what is already there! I also saw the feature on River Cottage, and the first thing I thought was i should go LOOKING for the trees in my area, not that i should campaign to get some planted.

Do this first, and you might be surprised as to what is already in your area. for example i saw people picking peaches on my way home from a tree on the road side. This is what they were getting at i think, not planting new trees that could take any number of years to mature and fruit but seeking out what is already available to us and using it, rather than letting it rot on the ground.
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Reba
 
27th February 2011 3:11pm
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Mmatch says...
I hope you don't mind an impromptu suggestion (that I could not find discussed anywhere above).

This is for any negative voters or similar naysayers (e.g. civic leaders, etc.) who object because how tree roots CAN lift sidewalks, driveways, etc.

I have had excellent results using what I call "root shields". These are simply any variety of materials that can be inserted at an angle (+/- 45 degrees) near the soil surface, then down and out, away from the tree and several inches below the pathway in question.

This shield will deflect young roots to develop their most necessary, fullest length and thickness, many inches below the lower edge of the "paving" (This is the only reason walkways are lifted).

I have found that roofing "tar" paper is very affordable and easy to work with. (I also like non-woven, fiberglass roof cloth, because it allows water and air to pass through, but not roots.)
Avoid sheet metal, even if free, since it makes it hard to work with later in time, not to mention might induce problems of metallic, phyto-toxicity. Scraps of vinyl house siding are a decent compromise.
Just slope the shield material enough to guide future roots where they ARE welcome. [Leave no gaps or holes that growing roots WILL find and force to open wider.]

Research has shown that over the years, a few roots might re-surface at some remote distance (3 to 6 meters, depending on species, location, etc). This is never a problem in most situations.

Easiest to install at time of planting, but shields can still be dug in afterward, even established trees. These root deflectors will not just spare the sidewalks, but also spare us from this reasonable concern becoming the routine refuge for shortsighted naysayers.

I avoid commercial, vertical "barriers" and specialized ground fabrics (esp. those impregnated with herbicide).
These seem no better than a common-sense root deflector (not barrier), wisely installed as an angled guide ... not vertical restriction).
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Mmatch
Florida
29th June 2011 11:56pm
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snottiegobble says...
In a perfect world it would be a wonderful idea to have fruit trees as street trees, but of course we dont live in a perfect world! There are greedy people, destructive birds & possums, trees that grow too tall to harvest, then the inevitable complaints of squashed & messy fruit making the sidewalks dangerous. We would have to be very selective indeed if it was ever going to work!
I remember orange trees in the streets of Malaga, Spain that were ignored & when I sampled a fruit I found out why, so bitter! Also in England almond street trees that exuded gum from their fruit onto the pavements, parked cars & people!
The only fruit I bring to mind that may be feasable are olives! At least they wont be eaten straight off the tree, Yuckkkkk!


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snottiegobble
Bunbury/Busso (smackin the middle)
30th June 2011 1:58pm
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Ellen says...
It is best to keep the size of the fruit trees manageable, don''t let it grow out of control and feasting for the fruit flies.
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Fairfield
30th June 2011 2:25pm
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Mmatch says...
I suspect two things: either those orange trees in Malaga were intentionally bitter for a few possible reasons:

1) to be ornamental only, without attracting lower class people ("lazy", expecting free food/fruit, etc.)

2) many cultures love bitter orange for cooking, like lemons, limes, tamarinds [Worcester sauce] or for marinades and sauces, marmalade (never sweet oranges), etc.

3) "Sour Orange" is a common rootstock.
They might have had some upper tree stress (extreme drought one summer or extreme cold one winter) and only the roots survived to re-grow and fruit.

Sadly, you might have to be selective on the olives, too. People in California pay to have their sprayed with hormones each year to PREVENT fruiting and the unwelcome fruit drop that follows.
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Mmatch
Florida
1st July 2011 9:56am
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Steven says...
I agree. Ive always wondered why the council plants ornamental fruit/nut trees instead of fruiting varieties. surely you could develop a variety that has the best of both worlds. plus in my opinion the mess a fruit tree leaves isnt really an issue. it only lasts at most a month and provides food for people/wild animals birds etc. street sweepers frequent every street anyway so any mess on the roads would quickly be cleaned.
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Steven
Eastern Melbourne
1st July 2011 12:21pm
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snottiegobble says...
There are always some miseries that would complain & you know the story, councils act on the minority specially if its in writing!
Yes I believe you are right about the oranges!
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snottiegobble
Bunbury/Busso (smackin the middle)
1st July 2011 7:13pm
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amanda says...
Gee - there is no way I could get my fruit trees to survive and produce decent fruit without water and fertiliser - how would that be done in a public place to start with?

I would love to see more community gardens around the place though - rather than vast expanses of lawn (that is reticulated) with the token (tiny) kids playground in the suburbs...?
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amanda19
Geraldton. Mide West WA.
2nd July 2011 10:35am
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Jason says...
If you plant fruit trees in streets you will end up with one person (old scammer) taking all the fruit off all the trees and making jam from them to sell at the markets. This is what already happens with fruit and nut trees along the road side. Plus most fruit trees are not wild trees and wont produce properly or even survive in most places in Australia without lots of additional food and water. Might be ok in Southern QLD and Northern NSW where the soil is abnormally rich and easy to grow stuff in. But I know most of my trees would die within 5 years if I wasn't around
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Jason
Portland
2nd July 2011 10:44am
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Mike says...
Rev I am a sceptic about coconuts being native or here in recent millenia inspite of that jcu paper.I know one of the early explorers claims to have found a grove of young ones on an island.
Councils respond to grower and fruit seller pressure with fruit trees and maintenance/mess/toughness are also issues.I reckon disease and pest concerns are not big motives for not planting fruit trees in public spaces.Some trees pose minimal risk and fruit well enough without fertliser to be considered more.Free fruit for the public would not be warmly supported in some circles.
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Cairns
2nd July 2011 10:52am
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reville Saw says...
@ Jason Im all for the 'scammer' taking all the fruit and making jam. Thats called enterprise. the value of the resulting jam is in the effort to collect it and process it not in the fruit itself.
Also i see wild fruits everywhere i go in Australia. Esp old homesteads and roadsides. Figs, Peaches, Apricots, Plums, Mulberries and even apples and citrus i see frequently volunteering and doing well. If you think your trees will be dead maybe you havent created the habitat they need, like water harvesting and shelter. They are all still wild plants, barely domesticated.

@Mike
Well the species is native in the longer term thats for sure. Perhaps it died out almost completely during cold, dry or fiery periods in an evolutionary ebb, but its certainly flowing back again, recolonizing lost ground.
Theres always plenty of room for fruit growers. Peaches and lychee are just a pain to grow yourself. they can be better by a proffessional. but its stupid to have to buy a lemon, a lime, passionfruit, or a jackfruit. I have a few balinese mangosteen from fruits of exceptional quality..if i was in the we tropics id love to see them planted in a park or public land
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Rev
north qld
8th July 2011 3:11pm
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reville Saw says...
@Amanda yes i know your climate is especially tough. But i used to enjoy the pomegranates, the kaffir plums in geraldton, (Harpephyllum caffrum), the Dovyalis caffra, the Kei apples and the Carissa macrocarpa.
Prickly pears also always reliable
Itd be nice to test out quandongs and desert limes
still other trees are possible - Khat for Tea, Bay, Myrtle, Mastic, sumac, tamarind, capers for spice

Take a look in Kalgoorlie. Theres many Carob trees as street trees
I bet pistachio and pine nuts are worth a go in WA too - esp if you can get the American pinyons
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Rev
north qld
8th July 2011 3:28pm
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reville Saw says...
oops forgot jujube :) i always forget that

and Argan. lovely tree. lovely oil

Henna, not a spice, but a useful ammenity shrub
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Rev
north qld
8th July 2011 3:29pm
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amanda says...
That's true Rev...(nice to hear from u again - how was Bali?)
There are many other useful trees that don't necessarily have to have fruit either...
Trees that could be coppiced and made into Biochar, for example, can make fertiliser and help to sequester carbon.
Trees and bushes that provide habitat to encourage biodiversity.
The only limit is our imagination :)
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amanda19
Geraldton. Mide West WA.
10th July 2011 11:25am
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Julie says...
Welcome back Rev! We've missed you.
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Julie
Roleystone WA
10th July 2011 9:39pm
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Roger says...
The native coconut palms are tough growing but tall and will have some restrictions on suitable planting sites. Dwarf and super dwarf selections of coconut can extend the suitability of coconut in public areas, especially in wet tropical places. This 20 year old Village Dwarf a super dwarf, is unlikely to cause any problem in a public area.
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RogerG1
Innisfail
27th July 2011 8:42am
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BJ says...
Hi Roger,
Do you know where to get Dwarf and Super Dwarf Coconuts from?
Also, how long does a Village Dwarf like that one take to fruit?
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Theposterformerlyknownas
Brisbane
27th July 2011 9:32am
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ringelstrumpf says...
I like the idea of fruit trees on the footpath, and maybe on the playground. I myself planted a (grafted!) macadamia and a mulberry tree. Kids learn quickly to open the macadamia with a stone and that entertains them very well.
Aren't diseases around everywhere? When I was a kid there were plenty of apple orchards, for juicing half of them were not tended at all and no one complainded about diseases. Isn't it with the trees like with the children, if you keep them in a sterile environment they are sick all the time?
And given the economic situation, yes we must plant fruit trees in our neighbourhoods.
IMO i would concentrate on trees not everyone can fit in the garden like walnut or chestnut. Ot trees you don't need that much like kaffir lime. In Brisbane there were many tamarind trees but hardly anone used them, maybe it was not the best variety. And there were guavas I harvested them.
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ringelstrumpf
Mountains
27th July 2011 1:23pm
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John Mc says...
@ reville Saw re Kei Apples:
Can they be eaten out of hand or are they strictly for jams?
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JohnMc1
 
27th July 2011 3:15pm
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Roger says...
Hi BJ,
Daleys may have some Malay Dwarf in stock or contact me rggoebel@bigpond.com
I have a village Dwarf planted at Point Lookout on Stradbroke Island and am waiting to see how it handles the winter. I also have some Malay gold and some talls planted there. Palm leaf beetle has recently arrived and caused some damage to coconut palms there. The palm in the photo with tony and the dog took 10 years up here but had a lot of stress. I expect 10 to 15 years in Brisbane under reasonable conditions. Dwarf palms are more self pollinating than talls but you can get over that by planting talls in clumps. Talls grow down there about the same rate as Malay Dwarfs grow up here but are likely to take around 10 years to flower. Anyone else have experience in coconut growing around Brisbane.
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RogerG1
Innisfail
27th July 2011 3:35pm
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BJ says...
Thanks for the reply Roger. I've been considering trying a dwarf since re-reading the article in the Rare Fruit Review. Thinking about the site I have again, it might be better suited for a palm with a bit of ground clearance (as much as I love the growth habit of the Village Dwarf), so a Malay Dwarf would probably be best. I see a few fantastic looking palms on my way to work, 4m high, covered in golden nuts. I eat lots of coconuts, so figured why not take my best shot at growing it myself?

Daley's typically list them quickly (on my off pay week) then by the time I am able to buy one (they are never a cheap plant) they are long gone. There is also one Brisbane nursery that stocks them, but again, its just as hard to get those ones. Come the start of spring I'm going to try the locals once more, and if there's no luck there, I'll send you an email. Thanks.
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Theposterformerlyknownas
Brisbane
27th July 2011 4:18pm
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ringelstrumpf says...
An answer to what nash said way up (to leave the fruit trees to the esperts)
1. the experts only offer either sprayed fruit, which I don't like of apples for $7 a kilo which is ridiculous.
2. As a kid we had heaps of fruit and the only methodical tending the trees got was pruning.
3. I am by no means an expert, but I cannot believe the story that infested fruit trees really are a danger for orchards, mostly hundreds of km away. Isn't it far more likely that diseases spread from orchard to orchard, especially when thousands of the same trees are planted?
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ringelstrumpf
Mountains
27th July 2011 5:29pm
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Jane says...
hi from cool melbourne I'm so glad to have found this blog am researching the potential of bush food trees as street trees and have become truly respectful of your average street tree given they are often surviving in the harshest conditions - and realising that you cant even assume that an indigenous tree will thrive given the potential for compacted/contaminated soil, irregular watering or inundation. I'm coming to the conclusion that rather than engaging in a street tree debate, it might be better to create a front yard foraging movement so that you can see stuff growing that you can share but the maintenance must come back to the grubby & gorgeous domestic gardener.
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Jane12
 
18th October 2011 4:23am
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Pathi says...
Hey Correy,

We´re trying to set up a network including an existing fruit and nut map, resources and a way of creating new spaces which may involve direct planting or the creation or use of community garden spaces for fruit trees. All this said, we´ve just started here in Sydney and are trying to connect with anybody here or elsewhere who has given it a shot and has any constructive advice.

We are aware that there are issues with unused fruit, pests, education, public hazards and maintenance but there seems a lot of scope for using low maintenance trees, skill sharing and education and special areas to get around this.

If any of you wish to get in contact with us send us an email. Cheers!
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Pathi
Sydney
21st October 2012 8:07pm
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