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Fruit tree under spruce?  RSS feed

Posts: 43
Location: Pennsylvania, Zone 5B
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Hello everyone,

I'm trying to plan my first forest garden and I have a quick question. First, here's what I'm looking at:

There's a map of things in that album. This is all happening in central Pennsylvania, zone 5b. The street you can see in the pictures runs just north of east. In the map/diagram thing, the rings you see represent the sun in winter, fall/spring and summer, to give you an idea of where it's coming from. The area in the pictures is the bottom triangle of that map, and that's where I'm starting my projects at. The tree that looks like it's blocking all the sun is a maple. It does block some sun but it's not really as bad as it looks. The house doesn't block as much as you'd think either, because the part running along this area is one story. This is actually by far the sunniest part of the yard right now due to neighboring trees and such, which is why i'm starting here. I'm pretty sure that the dead grass area used to be a driveway, and is very compacted. This is the only grass in the yard that is having trouble. Hopefully sheet mulching this area will fix it.

Anyway, my big question is really just this: Can I plant about a semi-standard fruit tree a bit under the canopy of this big spruce tree? The small pile of pine cones marks the approximate location  I'm trying to maximize space, and because I'm trying to make a bit of a sun trap this little point is the only real place I want a larger tree in the top canopy layer. It's base will be about 4 feet lower in elevation than the spruce, plus i'm not afraid to cut back the spruce a bit on this side. This is why I think it could work, but it seems unusual so I thought I should ask here before doing heavy planning around this. Will the coniferness of the tree cause any problems?

Any other tips at all would be fine, but that's my main question.
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