Net Fruit Picker





Introduction: Net Fruit Picker

About: I'm a refugee from Los Angeles, living in backwoods Puerto Rico for about 35 years now and loving it. I built my own home from discarded nylon fishnet and cement.

Fruit pickers with cloth bags sewn to loops at the ends of poles are common.  One problem with the standard design, a simple circle, is that the fruit sometimes pops out of the bag before pulling loose from the tree.  I solved that problem by adding a little finger-like extension to the loop design.  The fruit goes into the bag and the stem is grabbed by the reduced width in the finger area.  Once it is caught in the finger, there is no escape!

Step 1: Forming the Rebar Loop

The 1/4 inch rebar is not hard to bend into the loop-and-finger shape.  All you need is a big pair of pliers and some muscle.  

Twist the rebar legs around each other by holding the loop in a vise while using the same pliers and muscle.  Not only does this firmly join the legs to make a strong loop, but it also makes an irregular shape that the 3/4 inch EMT tubing can grab onto by mashing the tubing down around the twisted rebar with a hammer.  

Step 2: Attaching the Handle

EMT electrical metal conduit tubing comes in 10 ft. lengths, which is a decent length for a picking pole.   Use 3/4" tubing.  

Simply push the twisted rebar legs of the loop part into the end of the tubing and mash it down with a hammer.  The loop end will be held firmly.  

Step 3: Sew on the Bag

I like fishnet for the bag because it is strong and see-through.   If you don't have fishnet, you can always use cloth.  Shaping the bag is up to you, depending on the fruit you plan to pick.   I mostly whip stitched it to the rebar



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    9 Discussions

    A blade from a carton cutter fixed across the "finger" would make it easier to get to lemons and other citrus that "may not want to be picked just yet". I made a lemon picker many years back by using a large dog food can. I nailed a broom handle to the inside after removing top & bottom ends (and the dog food), and then on both ends with tinsnips, I cut a sharp V shaped. The lower end then had the leg of a "panty hose" attached, and the foot of that was held in the same hand as the broom handle. By placing a high lemon inside the can end, I would then push the stemm into the V cut which would slice it off. The lemon then slid down to my waiting hand.

    That may also work for mulberry reaping. Just make the stocking into a smallish bag.

    This is a very handy instructable, and saves a lot of nasty little problems like falling from tree limbs and getting citrus jabs, LOL.

    1 reply

    Anything that gets the job done is good. Cheap solutions are even better. It's good to be creative with the materials at hand.

    brilliant! we have two mulberry trees that conveniently grow all the best fruit at the top , with finer mesh this would work great!

    2 replies

    I had mulberries once and loved them. This berry picker design might be more useful to you, but maybe not. . Precise movements that high up might be difficult, though. Anyway, it's another option.

    I love the design of this! If I had any fruit trees around I'd need to make one. :D

    Very good design. You can make the bag a little bigger, to pick two or more fruits each time. Thanks for sharing, next summer I will make one of these to pick avocados.

    1 reply

    Hi there Rimar. A bigger bag can be harder to maneuver without snagging in the branches, but you could probably enlarge it some with no problem.