Homemade Fruit Picker with Net and Pole

We don't have any trees in our yard that are yielding any fruits. Our neighbor at the back has a hugh Santol or Cottonfruit tree that bears plenty of fruits. Although many of its ripe fruits fall on our backyard and some are near enough for us to pick, I'm not too fond of this fruit to pick them.

In our early morning walks though, I found a liking to fruits from a couple of Canistel or Eggfruit trees in a nearby subdivision. One grows near the sidewalk while the other's owner doesn't bother getting them. Many of its branches are at the street. Many of its fruits just ripen on the tree and then fall on the ground. When cars run them over, they're squashed and then flies abound.

Since nobody bothers harvesting the tree's fruits, I thought of making one fruit picker that I set on a pvc pole. It's easier than I thought (though a bit tedious) with only basic handyman skills needed. The materials are not difficult to procure either. Some of them may be sourced from scrap.

Detachable Fruit Picker with a Net Basket

  • Rebar (reinforcement bar): 6mm - 7mm, 50" long
  • Metal wire: gauge #20
  • PVC pipe: 1/2" dia., 6 ft. or more
  • Metal bolt with nut: 1/8" dia., 1 1/4" long
  • Netting material for fruit basket
  • Strong thread, string or twine
  • Masking tape
  • Pliers with cutting tool
  • Vise grips
  • Power drill with 1/8" drill bit
  • Metal hacksaw
  • Metal pipe: 1/2" dia. for bending and forming the rebar
  • Flat file

Assemble a Homemade Fruit Harvester

  1. With a metal hacksaw, cut the rebar to the required measurements as listed above. Use a flat file to remove burrs and smoothen the sharp and rough edges on the ends of the rebar.

  2. Fold the 50" long 7mm rebar at the middle. Use a metal pipe to help you form and bend the rebar. Insert and slide the rebar inside the metal pipe midway at the 25" mark. Stepping down on the metal pipe, pull up the exposed part so the rebar bends, using the metal pipe for leverage. This technique will be used for bending and forming the rebar. The fold in the middle will become the catch of the fruit picker.

  3. From the middle of the rebar, continue bending and forming the rebar so the following shape will be attained. Use pliers and vise grips in conjunction with the metal pipe for this purpose.

    The Catch in the fruit picking tool is a crook formed outside and at the front of the Ring of the fruit picker. The Catch essentially grips the fruit's stem on the tree branch so that the fruit can be pulled and picked. The Catch has a length of around 2 inches hand has a width of roughly 1 inch at its widest (the opening).

    The Ring of the fruit picker holds the basket or net into which the picked fruit will drop. Roughly, it has a diameter of around 6 inches. The Ring need not necessarily be shaped into a circle.

    It can be squarish as shown above. It is difficult to manually form and bend the rebar into a circle.

    The Stem is the part of the fruit picker which will be inserted into the pvc pipe. The stem allows the fruit picker to be connected and engaged to the fruit picker's pole. The stem is around 10 to 12 inches long. The stem should be straight. Crookedness in the stem may prevent you from inserting the fruit picker into the pole.

In part 2 of this article, the stem of the fruit picker tool will be discussed as well as the technique on how the fruit picker tool can be attached and detached easily from the fruit picker pole.


Homemade Fruit Picker with Net - Part 2
Homemade Fruit Picker with Two Catch Prongs
DIY Apple Fruit Picker with Basket - Part 1
DIY Apple Fruit Picker with Basket - Part 2
DIY Apple Fruit Picker with Basket - Part 3
DIY Apple Fruit Picker with Four Catch Prongs

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