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Blue Skies and Blossom

Spring has finally arrived - new growth and blossom heralds the start of the fruit growing season.

However, in early spring, the new growth and blossom can be easily damaged by frost. Not only are plants in full flower vulnerable, but buds and even fertilised flowers can be damaged, so protection should be maintained for two weeks after flowering if severe frosts threaten. Most potential fruit damage can be avoided by choosing a site where spring frosts are least likely - if you can plant fruit in a sunny, sheltered position such as a south-facing wall – this is especially appropriate for early flowering crops such as apricots, peaches and nectarines, and avoid frost pockets. If this is not possible consider using cloches and fleeces for smaller crops and keep the grass mown around fruit trees so that warm air from the ground, that naturally radiates up, will displace the cold air.

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