Continuing and Distance Education 
Fall 2018

PSS 095 Home Fruit Growing

Dr. Leonard P. Perry, Horticulture Professor Emeritus
Dept. Plant and Soil Science, 212 Jeffords, UVM, Burlington VT 05405
802-318-8453 (best, quickest response often by email)

Two (2) credits, online through Continuing Education (Blackboard)

Due Dates: (midnight at the end of these days)
Exercise 1 Website review Wed. Sept. 19
Quizzes, tests, other exercises Mon. Dec. 10

Tests and exercises may be turned in any time prior to the due dates. Any submissions after these dates will have points deducted for lateness, or not be accepted, at the discretion of the instructor. Plan for the unexpected (illness, computer crash, free trip to the Big Apple, etc). 

meetings: none, completely online, at student's own pace and timing (office hours: none, by appointment as needed)

Required Text: The Fruit Gardener's Bible, Lewis Hill and Leonard Perry, 2012, Storey Publishing, 320pp
Purchase from bookstores, online such as Amazon or Barnes and Noble, from the publisher, OR from our PSS department. Being the author, I'll have autographed copies available during business hours in the Plant and Soil Science Department main office in Jeffords Hall at the reduced rate of $20.  

Website: to accompany the text, additional information is on my accompanying website, which will sometimes be referenced in and required for quizzes.

1. learn the basics of getting started with home fruit growing, from choosing plants to site considerations
2. learn key specifics of home culture for the major temperate small and tree fruits, including harvest and use, and some main cultivars, 
3. learn the basics of fruit culture, including details of soils, planting, subsequent care including pruning, and dealing with pests and problems
4. get familiar with web resources for plants and further information, and basic math calculations used in growing fruits
Whether you are looking to become a professional grower, or just grow plants at home, this course should provide you with the basics, emphasizing sustainable and environmentally-friendly approaches.

How it works:
This completely online course is based on a new affordable and paperback home gardening reference. This is my total revision of former Vermont author and nurseryman (now deceased) Lewis Hill's previous (1992) Fruits and Berries for the Home Garden. While some great photos and four-color throughout, and packed with lots of info not just for the Northeast but the whole country, much had to be left out... and some of this additional info can be found on my website listed above. Tests follow the subjects in the book, and are designed to test and reinforce familiarity with and ability to use the extensive content, and to reinforce key crops, their features, cultural details, and harvest/storage. Intensive familiarity and mastering of the topics are fostered through repeated reviewing and reading of the material, considering relationships, and problem solving. The exercises will extend knowledge of varieties, sources, resources, and basic simple math calculations used in growing (spacing, fertilizing, buying media, and such). After completing this course, students should easily be able to choose what fruits are appropriate to grow, key facts for growing and storing/using them successfully in whatever climate, and a good basic knowledge of problems as well as environmentally responsible control of these. 

Email contact between professor and students is used as needed and to share information. The syllabus on Blackboard, AND the Getting Started tips, will serve as your contract for the course and should be read thoroughly. Students are expected to follow the UVM Code of Academic Integrity (

Access: Blackboard (your UVM passwords) for syllabus, tests, exercises

Assignments: 2500 points total for course
(17 Quizzes 100 points each=1700 points, 3 section tests 200 points each=600 points, 3 exercises=200 points)
There is no final test. All will be submitted through blackboard except the website exercise, as noted with its description. Quizzes/tests are mainly multiple choice, with some true/false and fill in the blank. There is no time limit on doing them, and they can be stopped and resumed at a later date. All are open book, questions designed to test and reinforce your familiarity with the material, ability to find answers to questions on important topics, and to come up with answers from finding several pieces of information. All answers come from and are based on only the text and any supplemental provided materials in order to be fair and consistent among all.  Although you may be tempted to use the internet, you may come up with conflicting and perhaps even wrong information.  The course text and materials will provide the only acceptable answers for quizzes and tests.


Quiz 1 Chapters 1-3 (Part One, Getting Started)

Quiz 2 Chapter 4 (Strawberries)

Quiz 3 Chapter 5 (Raspberries/brambles)

Quiz 4 Chapter 6 (Blueberries)

Quiz 5 Chapter 7 (Other bush fruits)

Quiz 6 Chapter 8 (Grapes)

Test 1 Chapters 4-8 (Small Fruits)


Quiz 7 Chapter 9 (Apples)

Quiz 8 Chapter 10 (Pears)

Quiz 9 Chapter 11 (Peaches/related)

Quiz 10 Chapter 12 (Plums)

Quiz 11 Chapter 13 (Cherries)

Quiz 12 Chapter 14 (Nuts)

Test 2 Chapters 9-13 (Tree Fruits)


Quiz 13 Chapter 15 (Soils)

Quiz 14 Chapter 16 (Planting/related)

Quiz 15 Chapter 17 (Pruning)

Quiz 16 Chapter 18 (Problems)

Quiz 17 Chapter 19 (Wildlife)

Test 3 Chapters 15-19 (Growing)


Exercises (3), 200 points (see blackboard link)

1. Website review (50)

2. Math calculations (100)

3. Cultivar word jumble (50)


"It is not so very important for a person to learn facts. For that he does not really need a college. He can learn them from books. The value of an education ... is not learning of many facts but the training of the mind to think something that cannot be learned from textbooks."-- Albert Einstein

"Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself." --John Dewey

links to Perry's Perennial Pages | UVM Plant and Soil Science Department