We may be spending most of our time indoors at the moment, but there are still opportunities to enjoy spring unfolding its sequence of fruit tree blossom. Whether you’re looking at street trees from your window, in your garden, or in the park during your exercise walks, now is the time to relish beautiful blossom, just as our pollinators will be! Here’s our guide to which fruit trees blossom when.

February to May

One of the lovely things about fruit tree blossom is that different species, and different varieties, bloom at different times, creating a season that extends from February to May. The timings below will vary by several weeks depending on each year’s weather patterns, and what part of the country you live in, but hopefully this overview will help you start to identify your blossom (N.B. the timeframes below are for the south east, where the author, – our Project Manager, Stephanie, is based).

Cherry Plum (Prunus cerasifera) – February to March (there are 3 varieties, pink Nigra is the latest to flower)

Almond – February

Apricot – early March

Sloe (Blackthorn) – early March

Plum – March

Sweet Cherry (Prunus avium)- early April

Pear – April

Apple – April and May

Quince – mid May

Medlar – mid to late May

 

Vital for wildlife

These early flowering trees are particularly important for the queen bumble bees who have been hibernating (already pregnant) over the winter, and emerge in late winter and early spring. They need flower nectar to give them enough energy to look for a suitable nest site to lay their eggs. Early-flowering fruit trees (along with other early flowering shrubs and flowers) are just the ticket. (That said, the double flowering ornamental cherry trees are not suitable for the bees: too many petals blocking the bee’s path to the nectar!)

Join the Blossom Watchers! – Share your pictures

If you have any photos of blossom from your garden, orchard or neighbourhood walks, please do share them with us on social media! It all helps to boost the spirits of those who can’t go outside, and to stay connected to nature as much as possible. Use the hashtags #BlossomWatch, #WildlifeFromMyWindow or #VirtualSpring to join in, and @mention us on Twitter (@realcider).

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