Good evening, My family lives in Abilene and we are wanting to plant a fruit tree in our south facing backyard. We want a self-pollinating tree that doesn't need to be sprayed frequently as we have a small child who plays in the back a lot. We would like to eat the fruit and makes jelly from it. What would your recommendation be? Thank you, Lindsey Kennedy
There are lots of fruit growing possibilities for Abilene, Texas, and your requirements do a nice job of narrowing the field.
Self-fertile or self-pollinating trees would include:
'Methley' Plum (one of the few self-pollinating plums)
Pomegranates (more bush than tree, although over time becoming tree-like)
Of this group, the Jujube is the most hardy-drought, frost, etc. and fewest pest problems. It would make fine jelly.
Plums and peaches are more productive than Apricot, which bears somewhat unreliably in Texas.
Although peach, plum and apricot all can suffer borer injury, and ideally need trunk treatment each year in August, I think for jelly purposes and enjoyable fruit, I would plant peach or Methley plum.
Good luck with this hard decision!