We have already covered our guide to conservatory plants and as wonderful as they are, sometimes the relationship can seem a bit one-sided.
All that care and those plants don’t give a lot back! Occasionally, we want to reap the rewards of our labours.
We can’t promise you overflowing fruit bowls and enough berries to start your own preserve company. But we can say with some certainty that even the smallest harvest tastes the sweetest when it has been grown by yourself and is definitely worth it! You can check out bestselling fruits for your conservatory here
So, what fruit can I grow in a conservatory you ask? It is more than you think!
You may be wondering, can you grow oranges in the UK? Surely lemons won’t survive the British weather? We certainly don’t have the ideal climate for them. Luckily, the creation of conservatories has changed that! Citrus trees are incredibly gratifying, not only do they provide us with delicious fruit, they are also evergreen and their flowers give a divine scent!
But how do you care for a citrus tree? Unfortunately, they are not the easiest of plants. Citrus trees require a special citrus compost as they require far more than the basic nutrients. They require a south or west-facing area, avoid high dry heat near heaters as this can cause leaf shedding.
You can also place them outside during summer, just make sure you bring them inside before the first frost hits!
When it comes to watering, this can vary all year round. The compost should always be damp so use your better judgement depending on the heat.
If you are using tap water, stand in an open container for 24 hours to allow the chlorine to evaporate.
The fruit itself can take up to a year to grow so citrus fruits are definitely a long-term investment. It will all be worth it when you’re sipping sangria with home-grown oranges in the summer!
You read that right! Yes – strawberries can be grown in a conservatory. I battled for years growing strawberries outside, only for them to inevitably succumb to frost or nibbled away at by a gardener’s mortal enemy – the slug.
If, like me, you have struggled for your berries, then planting strawberries in your conservatory may be the answer. Growing strawberries indoors can give a berry yield up to a month early.
They key is to remember to pollinate them and this really isn’t as hard as it sounds. Just get a soft paint brush and brush lightly from flower to flower, you’re the bee!
Strawberries are quite resistant to a lower temperature but be wary of sudden drops as they don’t like this at all. They do love the sun and being in direct sunlight is perfect for them.
Choose the right strawberry for you, the best variety to grow indoors is the Alpine variety but really you can grow any kind! You can get started with a range of fruit seeds here
When your plants are bearing fruit, they need to be watered daily, this will give you a juicy, plump fruit. Throughout the rest of the year twice a week should do.
Perhaps we may not be able to grow a vineyard in our conservatory but we can always dream.
Grapes are not just a great plant to eat but they can completely transform the look of a conservatory. One vine is enough for each room and be prepared for them to take a lot of space.
Your vine should be potted in a large container, they don’t enjoy standard soil, use a light potting mixture that drains well.
If you have one, a south-facing window is best for sunlight. Grapevines need at least 7 hours of sunlight a day.
If your vine is not producing grapes, it most likely isn’t getting enough sunlight.
Like strawberries, grapevines will need water daily while they are producing fruit, try and do this in the morning so the soil can dry throughout the day and avoid root rot.
A personal favourite! Not only are they scrumptious but they are also stunning trees. Many people are put off by fig trees as they can be pricey but if you have a little patience and choose seeds or saplings then they can be very cheap.
You can also easily control the size of your tree by pruning it to your specification, you don’t need to worry about it outgrowing the room.
If you are feeling really adventurous, you can also shape them. But be careful, the sap can be an irritant so make sure you have those gardening gloves on!
Unfortunately, figs have a preferred temperature and they will certainly let you know when they are not happy.
Cold drafts can harm the tree and they need to be above 16 degrees, so if you don’t have heating in your conservatory you may need to move them to another room in winter.
Consider planting your tree in a pot with wheels, fig-trees can become very heavy so having this extra help with mobility will really pay off in the long-run.
It can also prevent damage to your floor by eradicating the dragging of planters.
When figs begin to appear, use a liquid tomato fertilizer, they love this. But don’t over-do it, every 2-3 weeks should be enough.
Many people are shocked when I say you can grow apricots indoors. The trick is selecting the right variety.
Always choose a dwarf tree, unless your conservatory resembles Kew Gardens , you won’t have the space for a full-sized tree.
They will require a large pot, at least 20 inches in diameter but by starting with this, it means there will be no need to re-pot later. They also prefer a rich loamy potting soil.
They can survive with little sunlight, only 6-8 hours a day but they also flourish in as much sunlight as possible.
Apricot trees are fairly low maintenance when it comes to watering, they just need the top inch to be kept moist. Every 1-2 weeks should suffice, in warmer temperatures raise this to once a week.
Here we go down the mulberry bush! The least amount of effort with the best result.
Just like a fig tree, these can be easily pruned to bit whatever size you choose. There are even bonsai varieties and even those product a lot of berries.
Mulberries can adapt easily and will be happy growing in most kinds of soil but they prosper in loamy potting soil.
The more direct sunlight, the more berries they will produce but can do well on a minimum of 6 hours sunlight, so if you are running out of room and have only a shadier spot left then they won’t protest!
They do like a lot of water, how else would they get such juicy berries? Give them a top-up when the top two inches of soil have become dry.
They do not require a fertilizer but it can give a bigger crop, choose a diluted liquid seaweed fertilizer once a week.
Mulberry trees produce both male and female flowers so you only need one for pollination. Although mulberries often don’t need human help with this, some varieties may need a helping hand.
Follow the same technique mentioned for pollinating strawberries.Explore a range of fruit seeds ideal for your conservatoryehere
Supposedly the easiest fruit to grow indoors, so really there is no excuse not to do so. But considering the trees can grow to 30 feet, probably best to stick to the dwarf variety.
They do require as much sunlight as possible, so they need a prime location in your conservatory.
The trick is terracotta, pomegranates prefer this as their home. They are happy with any compost you have and need a basic fertilizer every 2 weeks or so throughout the warmer months.
They require a slightly moist soil, so do not allow them to become bone dry. In winter they can easily go a few weeks without water, depending on the temperature of your conservatory.
The fruit will be ready to pick between 3 and 6 months after flowers have made an appearance, which may seem like a long wait but considering they can live for 200 years, they clearly see no rush!
All this being said, you can really grow anything in your conservatory. If you are able to commit fully and financially you can grow almost all your meals! But for now, let’s stick to the simple stuff.
This has been a quick overview of what most common choices, their popularity is highly likely down to their convenience.
If you are a novice, best to read further into which plant would be best for you. Room temperature and light is something to always factor in.
Your hard work will pay off when you can feast on your hard, even if it does end up in a minimal amount!