Fall 2014 / Spring 2015 seasonWe are now taking provisional orders for fall 2014 shipping (warmer zones only) or spring 2015. 

Fruit tree guarantee

Fruit tree guarantee

When you buy your fruit tree from Orange Pippin Fruit Trees we guarantee it for the first season in your garden whilst it gets established. If it doesn't grow successfully, we'll either replace it the following season or offer a refund - subject to some conditions

Areas covered

Our replacement guarantee only applies to trees supplied to retail customers in the mainland of the United Kingdom and the continental United States (excluding Alaska). All other areas are currently excluded.

Conditions

The guarantee covers the first growing season after planting.

If your tree dies in its second or third growing seasons after planting, we will offer a discount on the price of a replacement or similar tree.

The guarantee does not apply to subsequent trees, since successive failures may indicate a local problem at your planting location. Similarly, if several trees of the same type die in the same way at the same time we will review possible causes with you.

It does not cover damage by animals or insect pests or other accidents.

You must make sure that your planting area is suitable for the trees you have chosen, and that the soil conditions are within normal ranges of pH and salinity.

You must tell us as soon as the problem arises - do not wait until the end of the season or the following season because it may then be too late to take remedial action.

We do expect you to take reasonable care in planting and looking after the tree. We have many articles about growing and caring for your new fruit trees, and you can contact us online or by phone for specific advice. However we understand that sometimes a new tree just doesn't grow, no matter how careful you are.

We might not always have the same variety and format to offer an exact replacement, if so we will suggest a similar tree or a refund. We also reserve the right to offer a full refund rather than a replacement.

What can go wrong when you plant a fruit tree?

Here are the 3 most common reasons why a new fruit tree will fail to grow:

  1. Inadequate watering during the spring and summer of the first and second year after planting - this is especially an issue with spring-planted pot-grown trees. When the tree comes out of winter dormancy it immediately places a demand for water on the roots, and until the roots have fully established (which can take a couple of years) they may not be able to cope without extra watering. If a tree dies quickly in the early spring this is by far the most common cause.
  2. In the case of 1-year old trees on dwarf or semi-vigorous rootstocks, failure to carry out the important initial pruning after planting can often prevent the tree from getting going in the spring. This is the second most common cause of tree failures in the first year after planting.
  3. The tree is surrounded by grass and weeds. Young trees are unable to compete with other vegetation until they are fully established. Try to keep an area of clear ground with a diameter of 1m / 3ft around the base of the tree, at least for the first few years.

Some other common problems to be aware of:

  • The tree is poorly supported or leaning over, which prevents its roots establishing.
  • The tree has been eaten by deer or rabbits - this seems to only happen to customers who plant the tree the day it arrives and promise themselves they will put some animal protection around it the next day …
  • Accidents with strimmers - these are one of the main dangers facing young fruit trees! A young tree will often recover from strimmer damage, but it can provide an entry point for diseases.
  • Various fungal disease problems, which tend to be location or climate-specific. If spotted early enough these can usually be dealt with before they overwhelm the new tree.

Some of the more unusual reasons why trees have failed:

  • Keeping the tree indoors over the winter because it was 'too cold outside' - never try to keep fruit trees in a heated house over winter.
  • Keeping the tree for a year in the small temporary container we supplied it in.

(We offered refunds in both these cases because we felt we probably had not been sufficiently clear in the planting information sent with the trees at the time).

So, if my tree doesn't look happy what should I do?

Contact us as soon as you notice a problem. Time really is of the essence with fruit tree problems and the sooner you contact us the more chance there is to put things right, especially in the spring when new trees should be growing at a rapid rate. Do not wait until the end of the season to tell us about a problem that your first noticed in the spring or summer, as this may invalidate our guarantee.

Send us photos showing the entire tree (including the soil), and also the tips of the main shoots. (It is sometimes difficult to focus a camera on a thin shoot tip, so ask a friend to hold the shoot so that the camera has an arm or hand to focus on).

We can usually tell straight away from a photo if the tree is dying as opposed to just struggling. We will organise a replacement for the next season, but work with you in the meantime because sometimes dying trees suddenly resurrect themselves.

Even if you just want some reassurance, please get in touch - we would much rather have a false alarm than be told too late.

What about the longer term?

Our service doesn't stop after we have delivered your tree, or even after the first year that your tree is in the ground. If your tree dies in its second or third growing seasons after planting, we will offer a discount on a replacement.

Many customers stay in touch, sending us photos of their trees as they grow to maturity, or asking for ongoing advice about pruning and training.

One of the advantages of buying fruit trees from us is that you can become part of the Orange Pippin community. You can register your trees on our sister website and record blossom and harvest details, and compare your trees with those of other growers.

Final words

We want you to be successful in growing and harvesting your new fruit trees. We offer our guarantee because we are confident in the quality of the trees we supply, and in the advice and information we provide to help you plant and nurture them to maturity. However young fruit trees are surprisingly robust and it is actually very rare for a tree to fail to establish.

  1. Inadequate watering during the spring and summer of the first and second year after planting - this is especially an issue with spring-planted pot-grown trees. When the tree comes out of winter dormancy it immediately places a demand for water on the roots, and until the roots have fully established (which can take a couple of years) they may not be able to cope without extra watering. If a tree dies quickly in the early spring this is by far the most common cause.
  2. In the case of 1-year old trees on dwarf or semi-vigorous rootstocks, failure to carry out the important initial pruning after planting can often prevent the tree from getting going in the spring. This is the second most common cause of tree failures in the first year after planting.
  3. The tree is surrounded by grass and weeds. Young trees are unable to compete with other vegetation until they are fully established. Try to keep an area of clear ground with a diameter of 1m / 3ft around the base of the tree, at least for the first few years.
    • The tree is poorly supported or leaning over, which prevents its roots establishing.
    • The tree has been eaten by deer or rabbits - this seems to only happen to customers who plant the tree the day it arrives and promise themselves they will put some animal protection around it the next day …
    • Accidents with strimmers - these are one of the main dangers facing young fruit trees! A young tree will often recover from strimmer damage, but it can provide an entry point for diseases.
    • Various fungal disease problems, which tend to be location or climate-specific. If spotted early enough these can usually be dealt with before they overwhelm the new tree.
    • Keeping the tree indoors over the winter because it was 'too cold outside' - never try to keep fruit trees in a heated house over winter.
    • Keeping the tree for a year in the small temporary container we supplied it in.
    1. Inadequate watering during the spring and summer of the first and second year after planting - this is especially an issue with spring-planted pot-grown trees. When the tree comes out of winter dormancy it immediately places a demand for water on the roots, and until the roots have fully established (which can take a couple of years) they may not be able to cope without extra watering. If a tree dies quickly in the early spring this is by far the most common cause.
    2. In the case of 1-year old trees on dwarf or semi-vigorous rootstocks, failure to carry out the important initial pruning after planting can often prevent the tree from getting going in the spring. This is the second most common cause of tree failures in the first year after planting.
    3. The tree is surrounded by grass and weeds. Young trees are unable to compete with other vegetation until they are fully established. Try to keep an area of clear ground with a diameter of 1m / 3ft around the base of the tree, at least for the first few years.
    • The tree is poorly supported or leaning over, which prevents its roots establishing.
    • The tree has been eaten by deer or rabbits - this seems to only happen to customers who plant the tree the day it arrives and promise themselves they will put some animal protection around it the next day …
    • Accidents with strimmers - these are one of the main dangers facing young fruit trees! A young tree will often recover from strimmer damage, but it can provide an entry point for diseases.
    • Various fungal disease problems, which tend to be location or climate-specific. If spotted early enough these can usually be dealt with before they overwhelm the new tree.
    • Keeping the tree indoors over the winter because it was 'too cold outside' - never try to keep fruit trees in a heated house over winter.
    • Keeping the tree for a year in the small temporary container we supplied it in.

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