Sew a FRUIT FENCE Bag for your fruiting plant.

Fruit Fence planters clip on to city fences. These bags have been designed to support larger fruiting plants, about the size of a small bush. An internal water reservoir helps to extend the amount of time between watering. Depending on the plant, weather and construction, the water reservoir can hydrate the plant for 1-3 weeks. 

* Makes a bag that is equivalent to a 3 gallon container and is supposed to last for 1-2 years. The bag materials are recyclable.
* Full bag weighs about 30 pounds when watered.
* Bag dimensions can be altered for smaller or larger plants.

Suitable for blueberries, espaliered lemon trees and other dwarf varieties of 3-6 year old trees. Fruit bushes will require fertilization and pruning care, of branches and roots as appropriate for the plant. Small bags can support strawberries as well as many other plants.

Because these plants can clip on to fences, or railings, it makes it possible to use underutilized urban space, and to help plants access more sunshine.

There is a twitter-based communication service for your planters, you are welcome to create a hashtag for your planter and put it on your bag and use the service to log tweets related to the care of your plant, which you can share with a number of volunteer care-givers. Visit http://www.fruitfence.us to register your planter. Code is on Github and is build with nodejs, mongo and googledocs if you are interested in hosting your own service.

Learn more: www.fruitfence.us  @FRUITFENCE

Step 1: Planning

You will want to figure out where you will put the planter, and learn about the plants before you adopt them.

Choose plants that can do well in 3 gallon containers for several years. Learn about the fertilizing needs, and soil type. Identify where you would like to put your planter, and select plants that will do well in that space.

For public spaces in California, ever-bearing strawberries are particularly good as public fruit, since they fruit for most of the year. Lemons fruit year round, and some blueberry varieties will maintain green foliage all year.

Dwarf trees and bushes are good options to look into. 

It is true that the plant will not grow to full size or produce large quantities of fruit (though you might be able to get several pounds of lemons and a pint or so of blueberries from one plant if well-cared for.)

Productivity is not really the point of the Fruit Fence planters. The point is to grow more fruit in public view, and provide a way for people with less access to soil a way to care for a fruiting plant. Living with a plant for an extended period of time, at home or in your neighborhood, will allow those who get to know the plant to become more attuned with the cycles and seasons of fruit plants. This helps with general appreciation of fruit production. 

The plants themselves are almost a form of bonsai plant, you can maintain them at a smaller size and they can fruit. For example, according to internet legend, there was once a 1-foot tall Ponderosa lemon that produced a single 1-pound lemon. The book Pruning & Training will teach you what you need to know.

In urban environments, you need to pay special attention to places that are windy, or are blocked from sun for part of the day because of buildings.

A roll of 10 yards Tyvek is about $80 shipped from Pennsylvania. We were not able to find other suppliers, but you can contact local printers who use Tyvek, or look on Craigslist and Ebay for extra rolls that people are not using. This will allow you to make about 10 bags.

You'll also want soil, fertilizers, and high quality plants.


If you can, share rides to go to a good nursery and pick up plants. A large bag of soil weights about 50 pounds but can be hauled with a bike if necessary. 

For moving the planters around, it is helpful to put them in a reusable grocery bag. If the water reservoir is damp, you might want to bring a towel with you if your bag art is a little delicate. (As is the case if you print onto Tyvek with an inkjet printer.)

I didn't think to weigh my ponderosa lemon when I harvested it (the tree was maybe 16&quot; tall at most) but it was larger than any navel orange I've seen-theoretically they're a lemon crossed with a grapefruit so they are naturally really large. It made a tasty lemon meringue pie.<br> <br> The slightly dehydrated navel orange that's been sitting on my counter for a couple weeks weighs 3/4 of a pound so a one pound ponderosa lemon definitely is realistic rather than an urban legend. I would have gotten fruit even earlier if the @#$%*&amp;! squirrels didn't keep trying to eat them.&nbsp; The problem with urban gardening is that the abundant urban wildlife is even more likely to make off with your harvest...and don't discount the two legged kind if you aren't planning an &quot;open&quot; garden.&nbsp; When I lived in my last apartment I rarely was able to harvest any tomatoes as the other tenant and the landlord kept taking them before I could.&nbsp; I don't mind sharing but please ask or at least let me know before raiding my garden.<br> <br> I love this 'ible and will be playing with it.&nbsp; I don't have much of a chain link fence for hanging and it's too quiet an area and not laid out well for an &quot;open&quot; garden but this would be a great idea for a community garden, especially one in a busier area.&nbsp; It would definitely catch people's eyes as they went by and hopefully spark a bit of interest.
That's a great idea! I'd love to plant fruit!

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