SYRACUSE, New York (WISH) — There’s a tree on Syracuse University’s campus that’s a little different than most — it bears 40 different kinds of fruit.
Sam Van Aken, an artist and professor at the university, says he uses “chip grafting” to create trees that produce 40 different varieties of stone fruits, including peaches, plums, apricots, nectarines, cherries and almonds, he tells National Geographic.
Van Aken says that the trees are a research project, an art exhibit, and a conservation mission.
Van Aken cuts part of a branch from the “working tree” and inserts a bud from one of the fruit varieties. He then wraps it with tape, allows it to heal, and waits for a new branch to grow. He repeats the same process over several years.
When spring time rolls around the “Tree of 40 Fruit” steals the show with its multi-colored blossoms. Van Aken says he’s created more than a dozen of the trees and that they’ve been planted around the U.S.[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t9EuJ9QlikY]