GOLD GRADE: Grow apricots this summer.

Deciduous trees are a good water-wise choice for summer rainfall gardens because they don’t need much water during the dry winter. It is easy to grow a peach, apricot, pear or plum tree, just make sure you choose self-pollinating plants or plant the required pollinator as well.

Plant deciduous fruit trees in a sunny spot against a north-west-facing wall, the warmest summer microclimate in your garden. They will lose their leaves in winter, thereby continuing to warm up your home with sun from the north-west. In summer their foliage will keep your home gloriously cool.

* Apricots. A useful shade tree. Choose from: Bulida (ripens in November), Peeka (December) and Bebeko (December).

* Peaches. Choose from yellow clingstones: Summer Sun (November), Goudveld (November), Oom Sarel (December), Prof Neethling (January), Impora (January), Keimoes (January), Kakamas (January), Kokstaat (February) and Klara (February).

* Plums. The plum dessert varieties are best for eating, and the small sour ones for cooking. Do not allow plums to overcrop (especially the Methley) as the branches might break. Rather thin the fruits. Choose from: Methley (November, red plum, self-pollinates), Pioneer (November, red plum, self-pollinates), Santa Rosa (December, red plum, self-pollinates), Sungold (January, yellow plum). Plant also Santa Rosa as a pollinator. - Saturday Star