What are the native fruit trees of UK

BalaBala Posts: 77
edited March 2018 in Fruit & veg
I have a narrow back garden on which I am interested in growing some fruit trees (around 5 or 8) to help Birds, Bees and myself.  Can some body provide insight into what are the native fruit trees of UK (I live in Birmingham). 

The reason for native trees are that they don't need much effort to grow because they are native. 

Also a good place to buy them and spacing required between them.  I heard that Plum - Victoria grows well in the UK.



  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 16,194
    Hello Bala,

    Not many trees are truly native. Here is a list of thise that the Woodland Trust considers to be native.


    As you can see, few of them have very enticing and juicy fruits.

    If fruit trees for consumption are your thing, but you want an old established variety that has been geown in this country for a long time, I would visit Bernwode nursery’s website and have a look at their historical collection.

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • FireFire LondonPosts: 5,882
    edited March 2018
    Native crab apple might be good.

    Malus Sylvestris

    I'm not sure natives grow easier than others. Moderns can be more productive, floriferous and disease resistant etc
  • BalaBala Posts: 77
    Probably I have over used the term Native. In fact, what I meant to say was, Fruit trees (any variety including Hybrid) that grow well in UK weather.  Having done a bit of reading, looks like I have to ensure the plants I buy should be self-fertile.
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 19,371
    The RHS has done studies and wildlife is just as happy in non-native plantings as so-called native plants.  Indeed, introduced plants extend the season and food sources thus enabling many birds and insects to thrive.

    You need to concentrate more on plants suited to your garden's conditions - soil, exposure, micro-climate, neighbouring plants for cross-pollination purposes.

    Plums were introduced centuries ago from eastern Europe and the Middle East.  Apples came from the middle east and beyond.  Pears are originally from China and Asia...................
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 23,660
    I seem to remember , back in the day, at college being told there are only about 5 plants "native" to UK. i.e. here since the ice age.
    I might well be wrong.
  • FireFire LondonPosts: 5,882
    edited March 2018
    I was surprised to learn (from Chris Packham) that a full half of wild British mammals are not indigenous, including the hare.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 58,523
    The bullace ... a sort of tart cherry/plum cross, is a tree which grows in country gardens and wild in hedgerows all over Great Britain ... it's a marvellous fruit for pies and crumbles and makes wonderful hedgerow wine ... and the trees are great for wildlife.  

    Damsons and cherryplums are very similar and a bit sweeter.

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 19,371
    It's not complicated.  Before the Ice Age Britain was part of the European continent.  As the ice melted, not only did the land rise as the weight reduced but water levels rose and flooded the lowland which now makes the English Channel and North Sea.  This happened fast enough to mean there was a very limited number of creatures and plants that made it across before the water stopped them in their tracks.

    Rabbits, lavender, apples, garlic etc were all introduced by the Romans so a mere 2 millennia ago.    Here is what the RHS has discovered in researching plants for pollinators and comparing native species to introductions - https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?PID=970
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 16,194
    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • steephillsteephill Posts: 1,046
    Do any of your neighbours have fruit trees in their gardens? That might help with pollination depending on varieties nearby and reduce the emphasis on self fertile varieties. If there aren't any then think about planting two or three mutually compatible varieties of each type of fruit you want. Most decent nursery websites will list compatible types. That would also give you the chance to have cookers and eaters for apples for example.
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