How Much Sun Do Fruit Trees Need? [30 Varieties]
There’s something to be said for being outside, especially when surrounded by trees, plants, or even just a simple, grass lawn.
The feeling is even better when you are sitting below one of your fruit trees, enjoying both the shade and the fruit it offers but have you ever wondered how much sun fruit trees need?
Gardening as a pastime is increasing in popularity, with people growing and planting fruit and vegetable gardens. There are several reasons for this.
To offset the cost of food and know the quality level, people are starting to grow there own, and then there are no worries about where the food came from or if it is organically grown.
I’ve learned that there are so many health benefits when it comes to gardening.
It is nice to be out in the sun, you are also producing vitamin D from the sun’s rays. Gardening has been a proven way to reduce stress. There is nothing quite like coming home from a stressful day and letting it all melt away in the garden.
When it comes to growing fruit from trees, vines, or plants, there are many questions that you may have.
- How much room do they need?
- How long before they start producing fruit?
- How much sun do fruit trees need?
Take a look at the 30 fruit trees listed below to find out more.
Apple Trees – 6 Hours
Apples are one of the most common fruits that you will see.
They are easy to eat and you can add apples to almost anything, including salads.
Since they can grow nearly everywhere, you might think that this common tree is easy to care for.
It certainly surprised me when I first discovered apple trees require constant attention and care.
They are quite needy and prone to disease and pests.
Regular pruning is required as well.
Apple trees will need six hours of direct sunlight each day and soil that drains well.
Apricot Trees – 8 Hours
Apricots are typically grown in plant hardiness zones 5 to 8.
Hardiness zone 5 ranges from parts of Michigan and Wisconsin and is in parts of Colorado, Idaho, and some areas of northern Washington state.
Hardiness zone 8 is found in the southern states, most of southern Arizona.
They are a fruit that blooms quickly as they originate from a cold climate and are susceptible to damage from frosts.
Apricots need at least 8 hours of full sunlight, without it, the fruit won’t fully mature.
Avocado Trees – 6 Hours
Avocados are a fruit that is a fantastic source of vitamins, minerals, and Omega-3 fatty acids.
These are a great investment as avocados from the store are expensive, mainly because they are highly perishable.
It takes weeks for an avocado to ripen and then they are good for only a handful of days.
Avocados do best in environments that are warm and humid.
When planting from a seed, it can take anywhere from 5 to 13 years before they produce fruit.
Avocado trees need six hours of sunlight. But not in areas with constant direct sunlight for the whole day.
Check out my article on the best avocado trees you can buy.
Banana Trees – 8 Hours
You may know bananas as the long, curvy fruit that is a good source of potassium.
Banana trees need a pollinator from anther tree otherwise they may not bear fruit, or the fruit won’t mature enough.
Since some variety of banana tree can grow quite tall, keep in mind the surroundings of where you want to plant the tree to see if there are any obstructions.
Watch out for water and sewer lines as the roots will grow towards them and around them if the tree is too close.
Banana trees need soil with good drainage and in a location with eight hours of sunlight.
Cherry Trees – 6 Hours
Cherry trees add a spark of color to contrast with the green leaves of other trees.
Since there are cherry tree varieties that are self-pollinating, you don’t have to do the extra work by grafting a pollinator to the stem of the cherry tree.
Also, determine if your cherry tree variety is the type that produces sweet fruit or sour fruit.
You may have tried cherries before and not liked them without knowing which type you had.
Cherry trees need 6 to 8 hours of sunlight a day, which helps in preventing fungal issues.
Check out my article on the best cherry trees for sale.
Cranberry Bush – 8 Hours
You probably love cranberries because of their taste and their high concentration of Vitamin C and antioxidants.
You may also have heard that cranberries grow in a bog or a marsh.
Turning your backyard into a cranberry bog probably wouldn’t be ideal, but there is another way of growing cranberries.
Cranberries grow best in cooler climates, between zones 2 and 5.
Cranberries have some requirements that you have to keep in mind.
They need a high level of organic matter in their soil. They also need soil with a low pH. They are delicate against weeds, so be sure to pluck out any unwanted intruders.
Cranberries need 8 hours of sunlight.
Dragon Fruit – 8 Hours
The dragon fruit is not a plant that tolerates a colder climate.
If you do wish to grow dragon fruit outside of the 10 and 11 hardiness zones, then you will need a greenhouse. It also doesn’t do well in temperatures over 100F.
The perfect temperature range for dragon fruit is between 65 and 85F.
When I first learned about dragon fruit, I was surprised to discover that it was a vining cactus.
This soft fruit can be added to nearly anything. It tastes similar to watermelon and a kiwi.
The dragon fruit cactus needs 8 hours of sun per day.
Fig Trees – 8 Hours
Have you ever had those delicious Fig Newtons you can get from the store? Those soft, warm, chewy cookies delight the tastebuds. Figs, on their own, are tasty as well.
Native to subtropical climates, figs grow in a dry climate.
Heavy rain when the fruit is developing will cause issues with ripening and splitting.
Since figs need a lot of warmth and are native to subtropical locations, you quickly realize that figs also need a lot of sunlight.
A location that faces south should ensure that your fig tree gets the 8 hours of direct sunlight it needs each day.
Check out my article on where to buy fig trees.
Grapefruit Tree – 8 Hours
Grapefruit is a great addition to any meal, or simply as a light breakfast or lunch.
If you are planning to grow grapefruit trees and the hardiness zone where you live is below 9, then you will want to invest in a greenhouse. T
his is due to the grapefruit tree needing warm temperatures day and night.
When planting the tree, be sure to keep it 12 feet away from walkways, driveways, and buildings to allow for proper growth.
The south side is the best location for the grapefruit to receive the 8 hours of sunlight it needs.
Grapevine – 7 Hours
You may have heard it through the grapevine that growing grapes is relatively easy.
If It also depends on your taste. If you want grapes that taste sweeter, then make sure they ripen in the sun. If not, then let them grow in the shade.
Grapes love warm temperatures and sunlight.
If you have ever been curious as to why you should grow on the southern side, the southern exposure provides more heat.
Grapes need around 7 hours of sunlight to fully absorb the nutrients they require.
Guava Tree – 8 Hours
Guava trees are found in Florida, Hawaii, and tropical areas such as the Virgin Islands.
They are very susceptible to frost and adult trees can only survive in the cold for a short time.
If you wish to go ahead and try to grow guava trees and you don’t live in a tropical area, it would be best if you had a greenhouse.
They tend to grow 20 feet in height, so make sure there aren’t any powerlines where they are planted.
Guava Trees will need 8 hours of sunlight per day for the best results.
Kiwi Tree – 8 Hours
This sweet, green fruit is grown mainly in New Zealand and California.
Kiwi vines need mild winters and a frost-free growing season.
They also need a LOT of space and can grow up to 20 feet.
Kiwis are another fruit that doesn’t self-pollinate, so you will need both a male and a female plant.
If the area where you live is known for its excessively high temperatures, then it would be advisable to plant them in an area that will be shaded, or partially shaded, during the hottest hours of the day.
Kiwi trees need at least 8 hours of sunlight per day.
Kumquat Tree – 6 Hours
The kumquat tree is one of the easiest trees to grow in an indoor garden pot.
Their fruit can be made into a jam, marmalade, and a variety of other dishes.
While kumquat trees can grow up to 8 feet tall and six feet wide, they will be smaller when grown indoors.
Kumquat trees can handle soil with any pH but need moist soil rather than wet.
They can handle temperatures as low as 18 degrees Fahrenheit, but need to be brought inside if the temperatures dip below that.
Kumquat Trees need at least six hours of sunlight.
Lemon Tree – 8 Hours
When life gives you lemons, plant a tree and you can make your own lemonade within five years.
If you live in a location that isn’t suitable for growing lemons, then the Meyer lemon tree variety might be the one for you.
The Meyer Lemon can be grown as a dwarf variety, making it easy to care for indoors.
Lemons can’t handle cold drafts or being near heaters and are happier when the temperature is between 55 and 85 degrees.
A Lemon Tree will need at least 8 hours of sunlight to grow healthy and produce lemons.
Check out my article on the best lemon trees for sale.
Lime Tree – 8 Hours
Like lemons and oranges, the lime tree is also a citrus fruit.
Also, like the lemon tree above, there are dwarf varieties that can be grown indoors. For the lime, it is the kaffir lime.
Lime trees take longer to produce fruit from seeds.
Unlike lemons, it takes lime trees up to 10 years to produce fruit.
Limes also can’t handle cold drafts or heat. Like lemons, they prefer 55 to 85-degree temperatures.
A Lime Tree needs 8 to 12 hours of sun each day.
Lychee Tree – 8 Hours
Lychee fruit is rare in the United States as there are only a few small farms in Florida that grow it.
Due to its rarity, you probably have never heard of lychee.
This red fruit is a combination of sweet and tart with a slight citrus hint.
If you do wish to grow lychee, keep in mind it will grow only in hardiness zones 10 and 11. This would include areas of California by the coast, near the border with Arizona, and southern Florida.
Lychee trees need 8 hours of sunlight per day.
Mango Tree – 8 Hours
Mangos are native to southern Asia and now Australia produces around 46,000 tonnes of mangos each year.
Mangos grow best in tropical and subtropical climates with frost-free winters.
If growing mangos in a cooler climate, it is best to plant near the home so the mango will soak in the heat from the home.
The best time to plant a mango tree is in autumn.
It should be noted that Mango trees need 8 hours of sunlight and they can grow quite large.
Mulberry Bush – 6 Hours
Who doesn’t love a good mulberry? Mulberries can either be made into wine, preserves, or eaten raw.
Mulberries can grow almost everywhere in the United States as they can grow in hardiness zones 4 to 8.
They are easy to transplant and are highly wind resistant.
If not properly pruned, mulberries will try to take over the entire yard.
There is no maybe’ about it, mulberries love to spread out. Better to prune when the mulberry is dormant as it tends to bleed when pruned.
Mulberries need about six hours of sunlight per day.
Nectarine Tree – 6 Hours
Nectarines look a lot like peaches, but they are far sweeter and have a slightly zingy aftertaste.
The nectarine is another three that needs a pollinator tree to produce fruit properly and that tree should be planted within 50 feet.
Nectarine trees do best with fertile soil that drains well and is very adaptable.
Since they grow quite large, it is best to take into consideration the surroundings. Are there powerlines overhead and will the tree block other trees?
Nectarine trees need six to eight hours of sunlight.
Olive Tree – 8 Hours
Olive trees can be grown both indoors and outdoors. Since they grow quite slowly, you may want to grow them inside to protect them from the elements.
They can grow up to 10 feet, but there are dwarf varieties that grow as tall as six feet.
Since they are native to the Mediterranean, the olive tree likes drier air, so they don’t need to be misted as other plants do.
When it is time for them to grow olives, they will need to be placed outside for a few months.
Olive Trees need 8 hours of sunlight.
Orange Tree – 8 Hours
I love oranges.
In one orange you have your recommended daily amount of Vitamin C and 15% or your dietary fiber for the day. Plus some Vitamin A and calcium.
Since not everyone lives in an area optimal for growing oranges, such as Florida, there are a variety of orange trees that can be grown inside.
Orange trees should be at least partially shaded from the sun when there are high summer temperatures.
They also need a humidity level of 50% to 70%, so they might need a humidifier nearby in winter.
Orange trees need 8 to 12 hours of sunlight each day.
Papaya Tree – 8 Hours
You should definitely try papaya at least once in your life.
They grow best in zone 9 and 10 and are native to Central America.
When mature, the height of the tree reaches 30 feet.
When growing papaya outside, it should be protected from the wind.
The papaya tree will not tolerate wet conditions, so make sure the soil will drain well.
To ensure germination, several seeds should be planted in the same place.
Papaya trees need 8 hours of full sunlight, and seedlings will flower after five to six months.
Passion Fruit Vine – 8 Hours
Passion fruit is a favorite of those who like tart fruits.
I find passion fruit to be one of the needier plants as it requires a lot of pruning, nutrients, water, and attention.
Like the mulberries, they need to be pruned every so often so they don’t take over the whole yard.
They do not tolerate cold temperatures and the warmer the climate, the easier they are to grow as they are a tropical plant.
The passion fruit vine needs 8 hours of full sunlight each day.
Peach Trees – 6 Hours
Peach cobbler, peach pie, peach tea, peach streusel muffins.
The possibilities with peaches are vast.
Since most peach trees can pollinate themselves, you don’t have to have more than one peach tree to produce peaches.
However, if you don’t want to be bereft of peaches, plant more than one tree and preserve the peaches when the growing season is over.
Peach trees need soil that drains well but doesn’t drain too quickly. Be sure to add fertilizer as needed.
Peach trees need 6 to 8 hours of sunlight each day.
Pear Tree – 6 Hours
There are no partridges to be found in these trees, but I think you’ll be happy with them just the same.
The pear varieties have different tastes.
Bosc pears are sweet, but also spicy.
D’Anjou has a slightly bland taste, while Seckel pears are intensely sweet.
The Bartlett pear is the most common.
When you first plant your pear tree, it needs to be watered twice a week until the roots establish.
No matter what age your pear tree is, it will need 6 to 8 hours of sunlight.
Pineapple Plant – 6 Hours
Did you know that pineapples contain Bromelain, which digests proteins?
This means when you eat a pineapple, it starts eating you until you swallow it and the enzymes are neutralized by stomach acid.
Pineapples are a tropical plant that is easy to care for and grow.
The quality of the soil doesn’t matter to them and they don’t lose water easily.
Pineapple plants do need 6 to 8 hours of sunlight each day, however, they can be grown indoors.
Plum Trees – 6 Hours
Not only are plums great for jams, pies, and other desserts, but they are great for those who want to ease into the world of gardening.
Plum trees are less demanding to care for and are incredibly fertile fruit producers.
There are three categories of plum trees, American, European, and Japanese.
The European plums are self-pollinators while the other two are not.
The American plum can live anywhere from zone 3 to zone 9, but the Japanese plums prefer warmer weather.
Plumb trees need 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight.
Pomegranate Trees – 8 Hours
In mythology, Persephone ate six pomegranate seeds while returning from the underworld.
It was then decided that for six months of the year, she would return to Hades and come back from the underworld in the spring.
Pomegranates require very little water and can survive several years under drought conditions.
It takes about 6 years for a tree to be able to produce fruit.
Pomegranate trees require 8 hours of full sunlight each day.
Check out my article on the best pomegranate trees for sale.
Raspberry Bush – 6 Hours
Raspberries bushes are another plant that can and will take over the garden if left unchecked. But that just adds to their charm … If you don’t mind it doing so.
Most of the raspberry varieties pollinate themselves and don’t need the pollen of another variety.
Here is something interesting about raspberry plants.
The canes are biennial, meaning they bear fruit when they are 2 years old and then die off.
The roots and crowns of the raspberries are perennial.
Raspberries need 6 to 8 hours of sunlight, as well as fertile soil.
Watermelon Plant – 8 Hours
Watermelons are another favorite fruit of mine.
A serving of watermelon has enough Vitamin B6 to increase energy levels by almost 25%. But it also tends to slow down digestion.
This sweet fruit is 94% water, making it the best treat to have on a hot, sunny day.
Watermelons can’t handle any frost, so the best time to plant them would be when there is no danger of a frost.
Melons need plenty of space to prevent disease.
To check for ripeness, it should have a dull thud sound when tapped.
Watermelons need 8 hours of sunlight per day.
I hope that whichever fruit you are interested in growing you found the answer to how much sun fruit trees need and you now give it a try! There is nothing more satisfying than eventually eating fruit from a tree you have nurtured from a seedling or seed.