Syracuse University Art Professor Sam Van Aken has taken tree grafting to the next level with his Tree of 40 Fruit project.
Van Aken has created and placed 16 unique versions of his Tree of 40 Fruit, which produces a wide variety of fruits including peaches, plums, apricots, nectarines, cherries, and almonds; which Van Aken primarily selected from native and antique varieties of fruit that are not available to buy on the consumer market.
Each Tree of 40 Fruit takes five years for Van Aken to finish the creation process. Starting with a two year old working tree, Van Aken uses a technique called chip grafting to add different varieties of fruit on separate branches. In the spring, Van Aken’s completed trees bloom with pink, crimson and white flowers. And in the summer, they bear an amazing bounty of fruit.
Van Aken added that he wants “to continue to place these trees throughout the country preserving these heirloom, antique, and native fruit varieties. Wherever I place them there is a sense of wonderment that they create through their blossoms, the different fruit, and the process by which they are created.”
Photo Credits: Sam Van Aken