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Clay Soil Fruit Tree Varieties

Clay soil is also referred to as heavy soil. Clay soils generally have poor drainage and consequently high water retention that act as a barrier for tree roots, hindering healthy growth. In general, fruit trees are sensitive to poorly drained ground and thrive best in moist and well-drained areas. The best option to gardening in clay is to use plants and trees that tolerate heavy soil or improve the soil quality before planting. There are a few fruit tree varieties that grow well in clay soil.
  1. Fig

    • Fig (Ficus carica L.) is a native fruit tree of tropical and subtropical regions and Western Asia. The wide-spreading deciduous tree grows to a mature height of 10 to 30 feet and has a shallow root system. The pear-shaped fruit is 1 to 4 inches long with a dark purple color. The fig tree thrives in a wide variety of soils including light sand, heavy clay or limestone. Fig trees bear two crops per year with the major crop in fall.


    • Pear trees are long-lived trees with relatively few pests or disease-related problems. Though the pear tree prefers a sandy soil, it adapts very well to clay and heavy clay loam. The tree prefers areas of full sun for best fruit production. Areas that get the morning sun are important since this helps to dry the dew and reduces the chance of disease. Pear trees require another variety of pear tree to be planted nearby to facilitate pollination.


    • Pomegranate (Punica granatum L.) is a native fruit tree from Iran and the northern Himalayas. The deciduous, red-barked tree grows to a mature height of about 20 to 30 feet with angular, stiff branches. Pomegranate trees are long-lived and have leathery and glossy lance-shaped foliage. The trees adapt well to a variety of soil types, including clay soil. Though the tree grows and flowers in areas of shade, it prefers sunny and warm areas. Pomegranate is easy to propagate from seeds or root cuttings.