Fruit Salad Tree Hoax

image 94-year-old Harry Tomlinson was amazed when his apple tree began to grow plums and blackberries, as well as apples. The 'fruit salad' tree generated some media interest, but horticulturalists took one look at the tree and saw that the plums and blackberries had simply been pasted on. The identity of the hoaxer remains unknown (assuming that it wasn't Mr. Tomlinson himself).

I believe that there are real varieties of 'fruit salad' trees, which I've posted about before. They're created by grafting different types of trees together. However, another horticultural mystery that I once posted about--the orange that grew inside of an apple-- remains unsolved.

Update: Here's an article about the 'fruit salad' tree before it was debunked. I like the explanation that one horticulturalist attempted to provide to explain the fruity anomaly: "One explanation is the tree may have developed some kind of fungal condition which can produce what are known as pocket plums which are actually apples. As for blackberries, I am sorry but it shouldn't happen."


Posted on Wed Jul 27, 2005


Dammit! Now I have Wiggles going through my head.

Seems a strange that the guy didn't pick up on the fact that the fruit was stuck on before he called in the professionals.
Posted by Smerk  on  Wed Jul 27, 2005  at  11:31 PM
I bet he did it himself.
Posted by Maegan  on  Thu Jul 28, 2005  at  05:04 AM
of course he did.
Posted by RAMONESxMANIA  on  Thu Jul 28, 2005  at  09:07 AM
Or he is 94 and gullible.

"We're always interested in new plants but this one, from 10 yards away, you can see it's a hoax.
"It was quite evident that the leaves on the tree were the same throughout.
"The second indicator was that the fruits just didn't go with the particular leaves they were alongside."

Evident from 10 yards away if you're a horticulturalist. Not if you're a random elderly man.

I'm not saying he didn't put them on himself, but I'm open to other possibilities.
Posted by Boo  on  Thu Jul 28, 2005  at  04:57 PM
Once again, you can graft branches onto trees that are fairly closely related-- apples and quince, oranges and lemons, plums and peaches, and so on.
But apples, plums, and blackberries on one plant?
No way.
Mr. T. must have spent the last 94 years indoors if he believed this one.
Posted by Big Gary C  on  Thu Jul 28, 2005  at  05:03 PM
I wonder if it is impossible - if it has been exhaustively tried (there's a number of plum and blackberry species). All three fruits are in the Rosaceae - the rose family.
Posted by Ledasmom  on  Thu Jul 28, 2005  at  10:39 PM
Apples and blackberries can indeed grow on one tree. I've got a jar of apple and blackberry jam at home to prove it.
Posted by paul in prague  on  Fri Jul 29, 2005  at  06:32 AM
And I have in my fridge a jar of peanut butter,
bacon, grape jelly and mushed banana, which proves
Elvis' favorite sandwich grows on trees.
Posted by Irv  on  Sat Jul 30, 2005  at  04:34 PM
wow there are some awfully judgemental people in this post. In fact different fruits can grow on the same tree as long as they are alike such as lemons and limes or plums and nectarines. I see the citrus tree which grows lemons limes and oranges on cooking shows which I highly doubt is a hoax and further more I have seen these trees with my own eyes and these fruits were not "stuck on" all you judgemental people should leave the poor man alone- how is he to know that with all the modern technology that this tree was a fake and at 94 years old who is to say that his eyesight was good enough to notice, shame on you for judging that is not your job.
Posted by Jennifer  on  Wed Aug 31, 2005  at  04:44 PM
"Fruit salad tree" "The orange that grew inside apple" - I believe all these theories are fake and hoax because an experienced horticulturalist has explained that this is a fungus developed by the tree.
Posted by Chop  on  Wed Jul 09, 2008  at  07:20 AM
i have a lemon tree and tangereen on the same tree also have pictures of the 2 diferent citrus and was wondering is this normal for 2 diferent fruit to grow on the same tree.
Posted by ronald  on  Wed Jul 09, 2008  at  07:53 PM
Yes, actually you can graft back the tree and that closely relates tot he apple, plums, and lemons. People has good saying in this post! Worth reading good work done. i have lemon, citrus and grapes tree too, love to make sandwiches.
Posted by hinduja  on  Sun Jul 13, 2008  at  12:38 AM
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