When people plant a fruit tree, their goal is usually to enjoy the responsibility of maintaining and caring for the tree, while getting to eat the delightful fruit that it bears. But I have had a lot of positive experience from using fruit trees as a way to earn some profit by setting up fruit stands and being involved in farmer’s markets.
Some time ago, I moved to Florida and had to leave behind the yard and garden that I put so much time and effort into and getting it the way I wanted. Settling into my new house and yard left me depressed. The house itself was nice, but I could see that the person who lived there before me was never interested in maintaining the yard. Basically, the entire yard was filled with tons of grass. However, this depression motivated me to make the best of the yard and fix it up just as I had done before.
Since the new Floridian climate was unlike anything I had experienced, I thought I would go out on a limb and plant trees that I never had the opportunity to plant in my old yard. So just like any other gardener in Florida, I decided to plant an orange tree. I planted the Valencia variety since they are almost always successful and happen to be the most popular type.
Once I was settled on what type of orange tree I would get, I went out and bought 3 trees. I diligently dug up 3 holes, which probably took me around 3 days to complete. The digging was flawless and once the trees were planted, they grew tall and straight. They even began to produce fruit at their expected time.
Within the first 4 years, my trees weren’t producing a large amount of fruit at all. Of course they produced enough for me to eat to my heart’s content, and there was never a time when I ran out of orange juice. Not that I was disappointed, but the amount of fruit my 3 trees were producing didn’t measure up to the thousands I had heard about from others. I often wondered what was going on with my trees to produce less fruit.
The following year it was a completely different story. One day I walked outside and to my amazement, the oranges increased by about 5 times. I couldn’t believe it so much that I thought my vision was going crazy. Once I harvested them, I was left with such a huge abundance of oranges that I didn’t even know what I should do with them. Fortunately, my friend gave me the brilliant idea of selling my oranges at a farmer’s market. All I did was park my truck, packed with all my oranges, and sold them to people. Some markets will let you park in their lot free of charge, but I had to pay rent for mine.
In that first day of selling, I made back the entire amount that was I had originally spent on my orange trees. Sure, it was not enough money to be able to live off of, but it was still a good amount just from selling oranges. After all, it’s not like I was able to eat them all, so why not make a profit? So if you are ever left with too much fruit that you can’t eat and don’t know what to do with, try selling them at your local farmer’s market. You may even end up being quite the hit with the customers.