Planting Apple Trees and Harvesting Apples

Apple Tree


Rate this Article: 

Average: 3.7 (511 votes)

Ever wish you could grow apple trees in your backyard? This guide will tell you all you need to know about apples, including how to plant, grow, and care for apple trees in your garden.

Apples trees aren’t just for people with acres upon acres of land. Even in a small space, you can plant a hedge of dwarf apple trees or an apple espalier and yield a successful crop.


Spring planting is recommended in central and northern areas. Where fall and winter weather is generally mild and moist, fall planting is successful.

Climate Considerations

  • Not every apple grows everywhere. Each variety has a specific number of days needed for fruit maturity.
  • Tree tags don’t always tell you where the variety grows best, but many catalogs do. Also check with your local Cooperative Extension Service for a recommendation specific to your area.
  • As a general rule, if a tree is termed hardy, it grows best in Hardiness Zones 3 to 5. If termed long-season, apple quality will be best in Zones 5 to 8. Check your zone here.
  • Each variety has a number of chill hours needed to set fruit (i.e., the amount of time temperatures are between 32 and 45 degrees F). The farther north you go, the more chill hours an apple variety needs to avoid late spring freeze problems. Check tree tags for chill hour information or ask the seller.

Site and Soil

  • Take a soil test prior to planting your apple trees. Your local Cooperative Extension Service can instruct you in collecting the soil sample, help you interpret the results, and provide valuable information about the soil in your county. Results from the soil test will determine the soil amendments necessary to correct nutrient deficiencies and adjust soil pH. The amendments should be worked into the soil to a depth of 12 to 18 inches where the tree will root, not just the planting hole. 
  • Apple trees need well-drained soil, nothing too wet. Soil needs to be moderately rich and retain moisture as well as air; mulch with straw, hay, or some other organic material to keep soil moist and provide nutrients as they decompose. 
  • Choose a sunny site. For best fruiting, an apple tree needs “full sunlight,” which means six or more hours of direct summer sun daily. The best exposure for apples is a north- or east-facing slope.
  • Tree spacing is influenced by the rootstock, soil fertility, and pruning. Seedlings or full-size trees should be planted about 15 to 18 feet apart in a row. A dwarfing rootstock might be 4 to 8 feet apart in a row.
  • Dwarf apple trees are notoriously prone to uprooting under the weight of a heavy crop, so you should provide a support system for your hedge. You can grow your trees against a fence, or you can provide free-standing support in the form of a trellis.
  • Make sure the tree will not be planted in a “frost pocket” where cold air settles in low-lying areas. Choose a higher site with a slip if possible so that cold air will flow away from the trees.
  • Do not plant trees near wooded areas or trees. 

Planting the Tree in the Ground

  • Before planting, remove all weeds and the grass in a 4-foot diameter circle. 
  • After you purchase the tree, protect it from injury, drying out, freezing, or overheating. If the roots have dried out, soak them in water about 24 hours before planting.
  • Dig a hole approximately twice the diameter of the root system and 2 feet deep. Place some of the loose soil back into the hole and loosen the soil on the walls of the planting hole so the roots can easily penetrate the soil. Spread the tree roots on the loose soil, making sure they are not twisted or crowded in the hole. Continue to replace soil around the roots. As you begin to cover the roots, firm the soil to be sure it surrounds the roots and to remove air pockets.
  • Do not add fertilizer at planting time, as the roots can be “burned”. Fill the remainder of the hole with the loose soil, and press the soil down well.
  • Most apple trees are grafted. The graft union must be at least 2 inches above the soil line so that roots do not emerge from the scion. The graft union (where the scion is attached to the rootstock) can be recognized by the swelling at the junction. 

See our video to learn how to plant a bare-rooted fruit tree.


Minimize Pruning of a Young Tree

Pruning slows a young tree’s overall growth and can delay fruiting, so don’t be in a hurry to prune, other than removing misplaced, broken, or dead branches. There are several techniques to direct growth without heavy pruning. For example:

  • Rub off misplaced buds before they grow into misplaced branches.
  • Bend a stem down almost horizontally for a few weeks to slow growth and promote branches and fruiting. Tie down with strings to stakes in the ground or to lower branches.

Prune a Mature Tree Annually

Once an apple tree has filled in and is bearing fruit, it requires regular, moderate pruning.

  • Prune your mature tree when it is dormant. Completely cut away overly vigorous, upright stems (most common high up in the tree).
  • Remove weak twigs (which often hang from the undersides of limbs.
  • Shorten stems that become too droopy, especially those low in the tree.
  • After about ten years, fruiting spurs (stubby branches that elongate only about a half-inch per year) become overcrowded and decrepit. Cut away some of them and shorten others.
  • When a whole limb of fruiting spurs declines with age, cut it back to make room for a younger replacement.

Thin Ruthlessly

  • Thin or remove excess fruit. This seems hard but this practice evens out production, prevents a heavy crop from breaking limbs, and ensures better-tasting, larger fruit crop.
  • Soon after fruit-set, remove the smallest fruits or damaged ones, leaving about four inches between those that remain.


Apples are prone to pests. Here are some pointers:

  • Keep deer at bay with repellents, fencing, or deer-resistant plants; deter mice and rabbits with wire-mesh cylinders around the base of the tree.
  • Sprays may be needed for insects like Japanese beetles, although one of the worst culprits, the apple maggot, can be trapped simply enough by hanging one or two round, softball-size balls—painted red and coated with sticky “Tangle-Trap”—from a branch in June through the summer. Reapply the sticky goo a time or two, as necessary.
  • Fend off diseases by raking apple leaves, burying them beneath mulch, or grinding them with a lawnmower at season’s end.
  • Pruning reduces disease by letting in more light and air.
  • To keep insects away from apple trees, make a solution of 1 cup of vinegar, 1 cup of sugar, and 1 quart of water. Pour this mixture into a widemouthed plastic jug. Hang the jug, uncovered, in your apple tree.


Harvest Patiently. After all this pruning and caring, be sure to harvest your apples at their peak of perfection.

  • Pluck your apples when their background color is no longer green.
  • Different apple varieties mature at different times, so the harvest season can stretch from August to October.
  • At this point, the stem should part readily from the branch when the fruit is cupped in the palm of your hand and given a slight twist around, then up.
  • If the apple is overripe and soft, use for cooking!
  • Apples keep well for about six months at temperatures between 32 and 45 degrees F.

“Baked apples have an excellent effect upon the whole physical system, feeding the brain as well as adding to the flesh, and keeping the blood pure; also preventing constipation and correcting a tendency to acidity, which produces rheumatism and neuralgia.” –The 1898 Old Farmer’s Almanac

Recommended Varieties

Wit & Wisdom

  • March 11 is Johnny Appleseed Day, celebrating John Chapman, legendary American pioneer and folk hero who planted apple trees across the American Frontier.
  • Did you know that apples and aged cheeses can reduce tooth plaque? (Eat them together!)
  • A bad woman can’t make good applesauce. –proverb
  • Does an apple a day keep the doctor away? Find the answer and learn more about the health benefits of apples, apple cider, and cider vinegar.
  • This fall, try your hand at making an apple head or try one of our Top 10 Apple Recipes!


Cooking Notes

Reader Comments

Leave a Comment

Volunteer grown fruit trees

A neighbor had some fruit trees cut down on his property a couple of years ago due to bee allergy and to thin them out. I received some of the mulch from the cut down trees. I now have several trees growing, which look like apple trees, where some of the left-over mulch had been. Is it safe to separate and move them now that they have grown so much? By the way, I have small pine trees that came up and grew the same way.

transplanting small apple trees

Interesting. We’re guessing plant seeds sitting below mulch germinated well thanks to the extra nutrients? In any case, you can certainly transplant small apple trees. In USDA zones 6 to 8, apple trees can be successfully transplanted during the early spring, before leaves begin to sprout, or in late fall, once the tree has gone dormant for winter. Apple trees in areas north of zone 6 should be planted in the spring after danger of frost is over.

Harden off Apple seedlings?

I have 3 apple seedlings that are growing well. Bought the apples from a farmers market last fall and planted indoors in Jan. or Feb. and grew under lights. Do they need to be hardened off before planting in ground? And, its been chilly (60's day, mid 40's at night) and windy.
Also, if I get apples in the future, will it be one of the parents of the apple I grew seed from?

growing store bought apples

are all store bought apples fruitless? do seeds lay dormant, and for how long? because I planted about a dozen apple seeds from 2 different kinds of store bought apples last fall (to make applesauce) 4-6 grew, 1 died then others also. this spring maybe 4-6 plants came up in the same pot. could they be apples? did the seeds lay dormant over the winter? the leaves look like pictures of apple plants!

Apple sapplings

We have grown some apple saplings from apple seeds I think they are pink ladies but not sure what food if any they can be given they are only about 4/5niches tall

Apple Sapplings

Hi Michelle,

I’m not sure if you did, but if you planted seeds that came from apples that you ate, they will most likely not mature or produce fruit. Commercial apples bought in grocery stores are mostly hybrids, not designed to be fertile. However, if you bought apple seeds, apply a shovelful of manure in the fall, and a tablespoon of nitrogenous fertilizer every month or so.


Can I leave apple plant in the sun

Sunny site

Yes, as it says above, choose a sunny site. For best fruiting, an apple tree needs “full sunlight,” which means six or more hours of direct summer sun daily. The best exposure for apples is a north- or east-facing slope.

yellow delicious tree

I have a yellow delicious apple tree . It grew it's first apples last year, about 9 of them, I removed the small ones but left 9. I pruned the branches lightly at the beginning of March , im in ohio, it has beautiful green leaves but no blooms the crab apples have blooms but my tree has none. Is it ok?

Yellow Delicious Tree

Hi Shela,

Depending on the age of the tree, there are a number of reasons why your apple tree is not blooming. While your pruning may have been light, you may have cut off too many flowering spurs. The Yellow Delicious variety does not do well in drought, so if there has been one going on in your area that may have affected the tree. Another reason could be small “sucker” roots growing (or soon to be growing) from the base of the tree. They sometimes don’t allow the main trunk of the tree to get sufficient water to bloom. Cut off any suckers as soon as they appear. If blooms do not appear this year, do not worry. Your tree should bloom next year. Good luck!


apple seeds i started 100 apples seeds every one came up they ge

i started 100 apple seeds they all came up 3 inches tall the stem turns red and they die


Hi, Diane: Most successful apple trees are grown from grafted stock. If you took 100 seeds from apples you’ve eaten, chances are that they are nonrobust hybrids of one sort or another and would not mature to produce viable fruit anyway. While it is certainly possible to grow apple trees from seed, you need to start with good seeds and have perfect care and conditions. But good for you for at least trying! And thanks for asking!

how to care for them

My boyfriend has 4 apple trees and this past fall it produced a ton of really big apples. Some had dark spots and they tasted little bitter. I do not know what to do to produce healthy apples. What do i need to do to protect the fruit sonit will produce a beautiful crop to share with my family.

spraying tress

When is the correct time to spray young apple trees for bugs and disease?

How does "all the time" sound?

Hi, Ralph: Thanks for this great question, the answers to which in some part depend on your location, what types of apples you have, and whether there are known infestations on hand or nearby. The best thing to do is an online search for “when spray apple trees” and then read up on the subject. But basically the thing to do is neem oil now to get at any overwintering pests, and then a fixed copper spray right before bloom for brown rot and fire blight. Then come the times throughout spring and summer when various organic pesticides and fungicides might be necessary. So, do an online search, but also contact (or go online to) your local state cooperative extension service–they will be your absolute best source of information on when to do what for apples. Thanks again, and good luck! P.S. We should add that the #1 mistake that people make in spraying apple trees is not in the timing or in what is being sprayed, but in not being thorough enough.

growing apples in ghana

I am interested in farming. I now want to procure apple seeds from south Africa and cultivate it in Ghana....I live in the middle belt of Ghana ,we have temperate weather. is it possible to cultivate apples which are imported from SA in Ghana????

Plantation of Apple

Very good.

Apple farming

Thanks for all the advices,I am better educated to go back Apple farming.

planting apple

Please I live in Ghana a country in west Africa. I'm interested in growing apple at my area Ashanti Mampong in Ashanti Region, but I don't know if if my location will favour the plant. Please kindly help me with this issue

Can you identify where is the market of the seeds of an APPLE?

I want to plant apple trees in my farm as soon as possible, but my problem is skills and knowledge, good planting materials, source of seeds or seedlings, related soil suitability, weather factors, market for selling products or market information, approachable price, and extentionist contacts.

growing apple tree

I started from seed apple trees (2) in the fall I will put them on our 3 season porch, will the leaves fall and trees become dormant

Do you live in an area with

Do you live in an area with cold winters? Apple trees do require chill hours. They will go dormant in their pots if left on an unheated porch.


We have 3 apple trees, 2 pear trees, 1 cherry, one plum tree, and 5 new nut trees. The apple trees are 5 years old, the pear are 8 years old. The cherry tree is 3 years old and the prune is 2 years old. The nut trees are 2 years old. They have yet to produce an apple, pear, cherry, or nuts. Last year we had lots of plums - this year none. There are blossoms (not many) except the plum tree had lots of blossoms this year. I used fertilizer on them 2 years ago as told by the local apple farmer - he said; "put 3 pounds of chicken poo fertilizer on them - that will produce fruit the next year." Well, the fertilizer did not work - no fruit was produced. I was pruning them to clear out the center until I watched our neighbors only apple tree produce many apples without being pruned or fertilized. Basically the neighbor neglects the tree. So that's what I am doing in the hope they will produce. Do you have any ideas why the trees are not producing?

Fruit Trees Not Bearing Fruit

There are a few reasons fruit trees do not bear fruit. Sometimes they are such vigorous growers that all of their energy goes into leaf and stem/branch production rather than fruit production. Other times, a late spring frost can prevent fruiting. The third most common reason is lack of or poor pollination.

Gala Apple Disease

This would have been our second year for our gala apple to bear fruit - unfortunately every apple (there were many) fell off or disappeared. They were very small and had black dots on them. We're so disappointed as we were expecting a large crop from our one tree.
A neighbor has a tree that produces many apples and we have also planted an apple in our back yard (which also lost all it's apples). What did we do wrong? We bought orchard insect spray and used it twice.

Black Pox on Apples

Hi Catherine,

Your apple tree could be infected with the black pox fungus, which exhibits symptoms that include shiny black lesions on the fruit. Try treating your tree in the early spring with neem, jojobo, or horticultural oil to get ahead of the emerging fungal spores.

Caring for your apples

In order to get a good batch of crops more care and attention is needed for lovely delicious juicy growth of apples

Apples cultivation

Hello I love this with all my heart. I have always had the dream to plant apple trees. I am a student in Africa studying agribusiness. I have a passion in the cultivation of apple trees but I have no one who can help me I am in Cameroon presisely in central Africa between Nigeria and Equatorial guinea. Please I need help from you I am really ready to learn in every way is my email.

I would like to plant apples.

I'm a Ugandan by nationality, I stay here(Uganda) in a place called koboko located North West in the WestNile region, Am really interested in growing apples but I do not know if my location & weather will favour the plant. Please teach me more about planting them regarding where I am.

on apple tree.

I need your advise on how apple tree could be prune in south west expecially in osogbo area in osun also is it possible that the root could sprute out? Please help me from osun state nigeria.Thanks.

planting a apple orchard on root stock

Sir i want to plant a apple orchard on root stock ... plese telll me is root stock can plant with out dripping system if yes so which stock..

honeycrisp trees

I just planted 2 trees. They are about 3 feet tall. How long will it take before they produce?

Apple time

Hi, Dar: It will take at least 4 or 5 years, provided that pollination goes well and they remain disease-free. Good luck!

I'm trying to grow an apple

I'm trying to grow an apple tree from seed, but almost of them died when I move to the ground after germination: root become black, dried and died. do you have any suggestion?

Apple Ways

Hi, Pratia: It sounds as though the soil may not have been rich or wet enough, but bear in mind that it is not easy to grow apple trees from seeds for a number of reasons, and even then, grafting onto a rootstock is usually required. There are lots of resources on the Web (including YouTube) from which you can learn. Good luck!

Thanks for your feedback ♥

Thanks for your feedback ♥
My country no any Apple tree (I think that), so have a little difficult to get suitable knowledge or experiment, but I love them too much and really want to grow, I found many growing ways on YouTube and garden web, but it's seem no one had same problem.
Anyway, I'll check soil nutrients and try to save the remaining or germinating again :)

apple tree no longer bearing for second year

The tree is a standard golden delicious..It was summer pruned 2 years ago and since has failed to bloom. The branches are sprouting Spanish Moss. Should I make it into firewood and replace it? It is 30 years old and has been a good producer.

Apple tree

Have had an apple tree growing in the garden now for approx 3yrs, it has still has had no fruit. Do i need to have another apple tree and does it need to be the same and how far do i need to plant the second tree

no fruit

Trees don’t fruit for a variety of reasons. Lack of pollination is one. The question of whether you need another apple tree and what type depends on the type of tree you’ve got. Here’s more information on this: Notice also that this page suggests that time to fruit after planting an apple tree can be 2 to 5 years.

It really behooves you to find out what kind of tree you have (got any plant tags from when you purchased it?), then you can consult a local nursery or explore further on the Web to better understand how to maintain it..

The source, as you can see is Connecticut, but the core information holds true.

Apple trees and nut trees.

It is 5 March 2016. I live in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Today it was 72' Fahrenheit. My trees are budding and starting to flower. I have been watering once a month during the so called winter. If I prune the buds now will I harm the budding and fruiting later, such as them not budding or setting fruit?
I do figure that I will have at least 2-3 snow storms in the next 30 to 60 days, Any advice is appreciated.

Need to start apple growing

I leave in Bukonzo county Kasese district, Uganda and i am very much in need to start growing apples. Am a teacher of agriculture at Bwera SS. I have enough land but am lucking the seed. My home area allows for its production with cool climate on the lower slopes of the Rwenzori Mnts.
Plz assist me with funds to acquire the seedlings and i too join the apple industry.
Thanks a lot for your contributions.

growing apples

Like chukwuemeka odum of Nigeria, i am interested in growing apples. i live in the grasslands of the nortrh-west region of Cameroon which has two seasons a year: a wet season from mid-march to oct. and a dry season from nov. to early march (no rain, hot and dusty). i would like to know more about its cultivation and where to get viable seeds. is nwanza misheck still interested in incorporation, as he aptly puts it?


I am thinking about planting a apple seed if i plant the seed within the next month or so would it be ready to plant outside in spring

Caitlyn Appleseed

Hi, Caitlyn: This is sort of a tricky question, because a lot depends on the type, health, and origin of the apple from which the seed comes. The short answer is, Sure, go ahead and plant it, and if it is going to germinate, it will certainly do so before next spring. Good luck!

Apple seed/trees

16th December 2015 in UK we collected seeds from our ancient orchard, rinsed and dried them and laid them on kitchen roll, covered with a sheet of kitchen roll, put into a ziplock bag and left in fridge.on 1st March some were just beginning to sprout so we put them in mini pots with earth, not compost. in 3 weeks they were sprouting well - having been left on a sunny window sill and watered twice a day. They were transplanted into larger fibre pots on 22nd March and are now around 4" high, each with 7 leaves. We had 70 seeds and we now have a potential 35 trees. We'll do it again late this year after the apple harvest but, after they've sprouted we'll put them straight into the fibre pots to avoid damaging the fragile roots in transplanting time. We haven't big potted them yet, the frosts are still with us so they're staying indoors. Hope this is helpful.

Promote Apple Tree Growth

What can I do to help my apple tree to grow. It's been planted for 2 seasons now and the over all tree size hasn't changed much. It's a New Zealand Green Apple tree and according to the tag on the tree it should grow up to 20 feet. The first season it produced 12 apples and this season it has produced about 30 apples but the tree hasn't grown any bigger. I live in Northern California and our summers are very hot AVG 110 degrees and our fall and spring temps are usually in the 80's during the days and low 50's in the night, winters can get down to the low 30's. Any suggestion would be helpful

I would like you to introduce

I would like you to introduce apple growing in Kenya

over the years since 1998 i

over the years since 1998 i have planted apple treesand pair trees. every march i prune back the sucker branches that grow strait up close to main tree. i use fertilizer sticks, have two of same trees of a couple different varities. i have even planted a crab apple. i have healthy looking trees, well drained soil and plenty of sunlite but i never seem to get much yield when neighbors seem to get much more yield and they do very little. 90%of my trees are dwarfs but two trees in particular that are the biggest and oldest have never produced at all and i wrestle over cutting them down and putting 4 dwarfs in there place. i dont spray anything at all except for the first time this year i sprayed a couple of qypsy months early on while they were just emerging from there tents. any suggestions???

desperate for answer
sean mckenna

Sir, I would want to know if

Sir, I would want to know if apple trees grow well in Africa, more especially in Nigeria.I am very interested in going into this farming,but I would want to start it from the the nursery. How would I get the seeds and also what is the soil preparation for the nursery like.


So do i

As per name am I,exactly your mind is my ambition,to start up an apple farm.
I decided to reply to ask if at all you might be interested in incoperation in such a business.
Thank you

I have 2 red delicious apple

I have 2 red delicious apple trees and 1 Macintosh. Last year 1 red started dropping leaves and this year both reds dropped leaves. Both trees are almost bare but still have apples. I sprayed up until I had blossoms then stopped because I don't want insecticide/fungicide on the apples. Why did my red's drop all their leaves but still have apples? They haven't ripened yet but some are turning red now. What is the cause, what can be done. I have to say that when I was spraying the tree's had full green leaves, they dried up and fell off.

There are many reasons for

There are many reasons for leaf drop. Not enough water is one and diseases can also cause leaves to drop. If your trees are healthy next spring make sure to water them if you have a dry spell and do follow a spraying schedule for apple trees.  Here's a sample of a schedule.

Its mid summer and yesterday

Its mid summer and yesterday I purchased a Red Delicious semi dwarf tree with an apple growing on it. I planted it today. I don't have the space for another tree. In early spring I would like to graft pieces from 2 little apple trees I grew from seed, one is a Pink Lady and the other is a Honeycrisp. I understand that the graphs, if they take, won't come true but what I really want them for is to help with pollination. If it works with the grafting, will that help with pollination? Also what should I be on the lookout for since I planted midsummer?

Hi, Cape Crusader: Yes,

Hi, Cape Crusader: Yes, grafting these two varieties should help with pollination. Your main concerns for your tree right now should be regarding water and pests. It needs to survive and prosper after the shock of planting, so be sure that it has a moist (not wet) environment, perhaps by mulching the base to help retain moisture. This is especially true if it is susceptible to salt mist from the sea. Of course, you will need to inspect it carefully every day to make sure that nothing is showing up on its leaves, etc. If you see pests or disease, then a quick application of organic insecticide or fungicide for apples would be in order. Perhaps a bigger threat this time of year is larger critters, and especially deer. You might consider erecting a high chickenwire cage for your tree, well staked for support. Don't rely on nonphysical barriers/deterrents such as sound and light, as deer that survive in populated areas aren't dumb. Or ... even better than the above ... find a local orchard, bake some cookies, and go have a lonnnnng chat with the owners. They'd love it. Good luck!

I was eating a Gala Apple,

I was eating a Gala Apple, when I noticed the seeds had roots,so I put the core in a small pot of soil,well it sprouted and I have 3 seedlings, all about 2-3 inches, will they make it and what should be my next step? have a bit of green thumb and really wanna help them transform into beautiful fruit bearing trees. Thank You Ms.GreenThumb

Sorry to disappoint but the

Sorry to disappoint but the parent of your seedlings is a grafted plant. It crossed with another variety to produce the apple you got the seeds from. Your trees may eventually bear fruit but it will not be Gala, it will be a hybrid of some sort. It may be even better than Gala who knows! But if you are interested in growing them as an experiment, give it a try. Transplant them to their permanent location this fall and wait a few years until they start blossoming.

We have an apple tree that we

We have an apple tree that we planted about 3 years ago. It is finally doing well and producing apples, but we just noticed that something has eaten the leaves out of the top branches of the tree. We don't see any bug accumulations on the tree, and the apples all seem to be doing fine. Any thoughts on what might be eating the leaves, and what we can do to stop them and protect the rest of the tree?

Caterpillars, sawflies,

Caterpillars, sawflies, leafminers, beetles, and aphids all like to dine on apple tree leaves. Try using an oil spray and/or insecticidal soap. These two pesticides help to control leaf-eating insects. 

I This is the first year my

I This is the first year my apple tree produced and I have been told that the apples are not good to eat. Help is that true?

Your apples may not win any

Your apples may not win any beauty contests but unless they are wormy they should be fine to eat. Enjoy the fruits of your labor!

For 2 years i've grown dwarf

For 2 years i've grown dwarf apple trees in a container but am now considering planting them inground. When is the best time to do it so the trees survive.

Hi, Yiorgio: This really

Hi, Yiorgio: This really depends on where you are, but the trees do need to be in or as close to full dormancy as possible. The roots, which you should move as completely, quickly, and gently as possible into a premade adequately sized hole, need to be able to get good water. So you can do this either in late fall, if the ground is not in danger of freezing, or in very early spring, when they are ready to come out of dormancy. Good luck!

After reading the

After reading the instructions and advice of growing apple tree's from a seed, I have to say .... I am certain Johnny Appleseed didn't go through so many scientific steps....why do people always want to make things so much harder than it needs to be. I have wrapped my seeds in paper towel,placed in a freezer baggie,then buried approx.six inches deep in soil outside during winter months...when spring arrives dig them up. Add water to moisten, close baggie, place baggie in shaded area and watch the magic of root sprouts which will appear in aprox. 2 wks. I live in Ohio so wintering is not difficult.

I planted a sapling from my

I planted a sapling from my mothers Red Delicious apple tree. I have had it for 15 years. I live in Northern Nevada. This is the first year it has produced apples! Problem the apples are about the size of a cherry and dont seem to be getting any bigger. I was told an apple tree planted from a sucker will not produce is this true?

We live in zone 3 and are

We live in zone 3 and are considering planting one or two apple trees. we have heard that apple trees will not grow or produce if they are near cedar trees. Is that a fact? If so, if we have one cedar on our 1 acre property, can we plant the apple trees if they are a distance from the cedar. If yes, what is the approximate distance we should adhere to?

Cedar apple rust can become a

Cedar apple rust can become a big problem. Please see the fact sheet at
There are some apple varieties that are resistant to the disease. Delicious, McIntosh, Jerseymac, and Liberty are a few. See a longer list at

Hello! I just moved into a

Hello! I just moved into a house that has persimmon, apple, pear and pecan trees. No one has lived here for several months, so the trees have not been pruned this year. The apple and pear trees already have small fruit on them. They seem to be fairly mature, at 10-15 feet tall. The pecan tree did not produce last year, and it gives nuts every other year (according to a neighbor). One pecan tree is HUGE and must be pretty old, the other is younger, strangling about as tall as the apple/pear trees. I think the persimmon tree is dead. I am a complete novice and would love to learn how to take care of these trees and harvest their fruit!

Can I prune my tree while it

Can I prune my tree while it has fruit on it?

Hi, Dobb: From a technical

Hi, Dobb: From a technical standpoint you can, but it wouldn't serve any good purpose. Please see the pruning and thinning tips above. The best time is when it is dormant, although you can still do so right up through flowering if absolutely necessary for some reason. Remember that pruning focuses growth, so work on identifying damaged, diseased, or underperforming branches while they are fruited out. Consider taking photos to help you identify what you will want to get rid of later. Good luck!

Our 7 apple trees were eaten

Our 7 apple trees were eaten my moles over the winter around the base. We sprayed a substance on them to seal them. (suggestion by our local garden shop) We have so may flowers, but very few leaves. Is this normal? Will the trees live? Thank you.

Can I plant a group of apple

Can I plant a group of apple trees in a clearing in a white pine plantation?
It's the only good soil I have available? The clearing is about 150ftX1000ft. I thought maybe 50 trees.

Hi Dirk, It should not be

Hi Dirk,
It should not be problem as long as the trees get enough sun and pollinators can find them. Do a bit of research on how big the variety you choose will grow and don't plant them too close.

I have a 30+ year old

I have a 30+ year old decorative apple tree which produces small 1/2" fruit most every year. I also this last winter grew several Red Delicious trees from seed. After these grow a couple years can they be grafted onto the old thee and will they produce Red Delicious apples. This is eastern Kansas area.

Growing apples from seed

Growing apples from seed isn't going to work. The apple tree has an extraordinary number of genes. The progeny will never resemble the parent that it came from. Most apples are not good for eating which is why discovering a good variety is a real treasure. From there they are cloned and grafted onto a good rootstock. You will never get red delicious apples from planting the seeds of a red delicious. You will most likely end up with a fruit that is inedible.

I live in Toronto and just

I live in Toronto and just bought a 4 in 1 Apple Tree for my small back yard(Beni Shogun Fuji, Honeycrisp, Chehalis,Akane). Are they good combination? some say 4 in 1 grafted apple trees are not good. What do you think about 4 in 1 grafted apple trees? how to take good care of them? thank you

Hi, Jeff: 4-in-1 grafted

Hi, Jeff: 4-in-1 grafted apple trees are perfectly OK, provided they are cared for properly -- please read the tips above. If there is a way, you should try to plant it to the south of a structure of some sort, so that it gets maximum sun but is protected from the NW winds. Have fun!

Hi I'm in the UK. We brought


I'm in the UK.

We brought an apple tree last year and were told it was a sweet type of apple variety by the incompetent garden center staff. It however has a very tarty sharp almost citric like flavor. The apples are a golden yellow tinged with red. I lost the label and was wondering what type it would be? It's ready to harvest mid October and has a profusion of fruit.
I have now purchased another apple tree( and been told it is a dessert apple for sure.It;s a different garden center. The last tree we brought fruited the same year. Is it possible for this to happen this year? I will plant it this week.

i just would like to know how

i just would like to know how manny years it will take

I have a granny Smith Apple

I have a granny Smith Apple tree a about 7yrs old. Just wondering what would cause the newly setting fruit to become yellow and fall off

Apple drop can happen for

Apple drop can happen for many reasons. If it's this early, the issue is usually pollination. Most apple varieties in your yard need another apple tree within 100 feet of your tree. Another reason is pollination due to lack of bees or poor weather.
Finally, apples do some natural fruit dropping because the trees wouldn't be able to support the load if every single flower developed into a full-sized apple.  It's a good idea to thin your tree every year; a good rule of thumb is one apple for every 40 to 50 leaves. 

I have 2 dwarf apple trees' 1

I have 2 dwarf apple trees' 1 red delicious and 1 yellow delicious. The are still green in side, the height they are suppose to be, very few limbs, not filled out like most with lots of limbs, bark is light and dark grey, gets full of leaves, but no fruit yet. Trees about 10 years old but look like 2 years old. Live in TN. USDA Zone 7a. Trees planted side by side, about 10 feet a part and I have never had to trim them, not enough limbs to trim. Trunk is about 5 inches round. Other fruit trees doing good but no fruit, same age. What am I doing wrong?

Sounds like the distance

Sounds like the distance apart, and varieties should be OK. Golden Delicious is a good pollinator for other apples. Do they get full sun? Do flowers form at all? If you think your trees look sickly, which can sometimes deter fruiting, check for pests and diseases. Make sure that you provide enough water. Also, rich soil and/or too much fertilizer can inhibit flowering/fruiting, encouraging instead leaf and branch growth. Pruning also helps to stimulate fruiting; dwarf apples don't need as much pruning as other sizes, but they can still benefit.
For more information, you might check these sources:

I've always been told the

I've always been told the only stupid question is the one you don't ask. Could a feather duster be used to help pollination? Perhaps dust several trees multiple times. Can the pollen then be saved by wrapping the duster in a brown or plastic bag to dust a tree that blooms at a later date?

Hi, Feather dusters are


Feather dusters are excellent for pollinating fruit trees. You can even tie it to a stick to reach the top flowers on tall trees. Pollen is best used the same day and tricky to store. Here's a link to an article about saving pollen.

I am considering getting a

I am considering getting a dwarf apple tree. Do you have a recommendation on how much room is required for the roots? Would like to plant it under my picture window that faces the east.


Hi, Estelle: This is a great

Hi, Estelle: This is a great question -- thanks! Even for a dwarf apple tree, we always plan on a 4-foot diameter, although the eventual reality may be less than that. The thing to do here is to consult with a local nursery or your county extension service to get advice specific to your area. You need to make sure that the type you get is self-fruiting (doesn't require another tree in the neighborhood). You need to use really good soil. And so forth. Someone more local can help you fine-tune your planting. Another thing to consider is whether it is going to block your view, and also the fact that it will be east- rather than south-facing. You might want to consider planting your dwarf apple tree in a really big container that you can move or turn. Thanks again!

I have a few fruit trees in

I have a few fruit trees in my garden- 2 peach, 2 fig, 2 apple and berry canes along with blueberries. The problem is with my 2 apple trees (red delicious and gold delicious.) They have cedar apple rust and have produced very poorly in the 6 years that I've had them. I was hoping at some point they may adapt better, but now that they are nearly 15 feet tall it's time to decide whether or not to keep them or remove them. Since I live in the city and have limited space, I need fruit trees that will produce. Should I give them a few more years or go ahead and take them out? Also, what varieties will be disease resistent in zone 7a - Piedmont area of NC? Thanks much!

If you want to save your

If you want to save your trees it's recommended to remove any host plants (red cedar or junipers) growing within 300 yards of your apple trees. You can also spray the trees with a  sulfur solution (3 tablespoons sulfur to one gallon water) three times during the growing season. If you are looking to replace your trees choose from Baldwin,  Enterprise, Liberty, McIntosh and Sundance. They are known to be highly resistant to cedar apple rust.

Rather than pulling out the

Rather than pulling out the trees, you should think about grafting scionwood from a cedar apple rust variety. You could actually add several types. This seems better than cutting the mature trees down. More types and less wait for apples.

i just brought 2 apples from

i just brought 2 apples from shop for seed however i am confused. Is that summer temperatures range between 30°C and 40°C. April is the warmest month in most parts of the country. January is the coldest month, when the average temperature for most of the country is about 10°C suitable for apple cultivation.

I have a small Apple tree

I have a small Apple tree (Unknown type, tart, firm, great pie apples) and I decided to try to grow a new tree from a seed (experiment as one lady said). Researched and found that it 'takes two different types of seeds to germinate an apple seed' so got another apple (Gala) and put the seeds through the 6 wks in fridge, with damp towel. Got 3 germinated planted them and they started growing, got to 1 inch tall. Thrilled, until the first one 'keeled over'. It just went withery and dark stem and fell over. I had one in one pot and two in another pot left, so I thought it was still possible to get a 'TREE'. The second 'single' one is going the same way.
What is wrong? I have them in clay pots, with good potting soil, in a East window as we are just going into our winter season (California Central Coast). I give my plants a diluted Miracle Gro every other watering.
Since those 1st few, two others have germinated, I just planted them in pots and they are just shedding their seed shell.
Help? I'd really like a couple of these to live.

Hi Linda, Make sure that you

Hi Linda,
Make sure that you have good quality potting soil that is not too heavy. Instead of fertilizer add a bit of compost to the soil. Handle the seedlings carefully when transplanting. They can easily get damaged. Keep the soil moist but not too wet. The seedlings need as much sunlight as you can give them. Good luck!

we planted 4 dwarf apple

we planted 4 dwarf apple trees, red delicious, Cortland, golden delicious, and a gala. we bought two from a local home and garden store and 4 from a catalog. we have had a couple that seem to have leaves, but a couple of them look dead. my husband thinks we should trim off the dead branches and part of the dead trunk. I am nervous we have never taken care of apple trees before and I have read your comments about them being dormant when you plant them in the spring. What to do. Also do you treat peach and pear trees the same?

Hi Joyce, When did you plant

Hi Joyce,
When did you plant the trees? If they were planted in the spring they should have leaves by now. If they look dead they probably are dead. You can try to contact the catalog place or talk to the people at the home and garden store to see what they suggest. The best time to prune the trees are in early spring. 
Go to our peach and pear pages for information about growing peaches and pears.

I have a dwarf Honeycrisp

I have a dwarf Honeycrisp here in Michigan. It is about 9 years old. I've had two years where I had a great crop - both were years that I had a professional come in and spray several times in the season. I'd like to be able to care for this tree myself but just can't seem to gain any success. I use an organic balanced fertilizer; I spray with copper, milky spore, and a fruit tree insecticide; use the fake apples with Tangle-trap, and clean up all the bad apples under the tree, all to no avail.

I have plum leaf curculio, scab, some kind of pest that curls the leaves at branch ends, and some kind of disease that makes ALL the leaves a little warped and spotted and shiny (can I send you a picture?).


Just realized I said that I

Just realized I said that I had sprayed with milky spore - that's wrong, it was Kaolin Clay which is supposed to act as a barrier to the plum curculio.

Honeycrisps are tricky to

Honeycrisps are tricky to grow. They are picky about location and soil. Some of the common problems include cedar apple rust, codling moths, leafrollers, aphids, apple scab, scale and fireblight. You may deter some of the pests by adding calcium to the soil and treating the tree with horticultural and antifungal oils.

We had and old apple tree

We had and old apple tree that never did much this year we had it pruned sprayed and put a bee hive bòx under the tree while it was in bloom. Like magic the tree has produced 11 large boxes of apples and there is more to come. My question is there are alot of small apples left do I wait untill they get big or are they ripe now?? I did read that I should have thinned the tree when the apples were cherry size to late for that this year so what do I do now thanks for this site it is very helpful.

Hi Karen, You can test a

Hi Karen,
You can test a small apple to see if it is ripe. If not, leave the apples on the tree until before your first frost this fall. You can pick and discard some of the small apples now to allow the remaining apples on the tree to grow bigger.

what do i do with ground

what do i do with ground apples?

My wife and I just moved into an acrage with a old established apple orchard. We arent sure what kind of apples they are and will have to figure that out at some point. We just moved in and fall is coming early this year so there are a few thousand apples on the ground already and we've picked and froze thousands more. my issue is that we dont know what to do with all of the apples on the ground. many sites say to let them rot and fertilize the ground for future crops. but some say that if you do, it'll raise the chances that they will catch diseases easier. And that rodants will flock to your feilds to feed on them. so i'm not sure what the answer is. can you hekp me and answer it for me.

also, what is a good resource to use to figure out what kind of apples they are?
david Lyman

I planted last fall a mutsu

I planted last fall a mutsu and fugue. has sun all day, had to wrap this spring for three days because of frost here in MI because it was full of blossoms. Got lots of little apples, but leave are curling and something was eating the leaves. sprayed with neem, some of the apples got little worms. now they aren't really big but are growing 9/01/14. a lot of the leaves are either gone or webby something is still eating them. Maybe I needed to spray earlier with the neem before blossoms or after they set fruit.

I live in my grandparents old

I live in my grandparents old house. There are 3 apple trees here that are at least 40 years old. I'm not sure what kind of Apple trees they are but my grandpap always told me the one was a "black apple tree" if that helps. My problem is the apples on all three trees only get golf ball size and have dark spots and divots in them. I'd really like to save these trees because they mean a lot to me. Thankyou for any help.

Could your grandfather have

Could your grandfather have meant that one of your tree was an "Arkansas Black" variety? You can find information about this cultivar on the Web.
As for the dimples and dark spots, that can be caused by several things. For example, apple scab causes brown corky areas and deformed fruit. Apple maggot flies lay eggs in the fruit, causing dimples (check for worms inside the apple, if so). Plum curculio also can lay eggs in the fruit and cause crescent shape marks and dimples. Tarnished plant bugs and codling moths can cause similar damage.
Small apples can be caused by poor pollination. We'd imagine that your grandfather planted the correct mix of varieties for proper cross-pollination, if needed (ones that are compatible and bloom around the same time). (Arkansas Black, for example, requires another variety for cross-pollination for best results.) However, sometimes the pollinators themselves may not do an adequate job, such as if the weather was unusually wet or cold. Insecticides may harm bee activity as well.
But more likely, the small fruit is due to poor thinning. Sometimes apples just produce too much fruit for all of them to grow large--the tree's energy is distributed too widely. It will naturally drop some of its fruit (around June) as a form of natural thinning. But one needs to also hand thin for best fruit size and tree health. Too much fruit can cause limbs to break, as well as "biennial bearing" which means that a sparse crop next year will follow a heavy crop this year. To avoid this, thin the crop each year. When the fruits are about dime size, thin out each cluster of fruit to 1 large, healthy looking fruit. Remove any diseased, wrinkled, malformed etc., apples. Space apples to about 6 to 8 inches between each. For more information, see:

The apples from the "Black

The apples from the "Black apple tree" have very dark red skin "almost black" and are very white inside and very sweet. Thankyou for the advice. The trees are also VERY BIG!! A good 30-40 feet tall and very full. I'm not sure how to trim them or how much because I'm afraid of killing them. I have tried to take seeds from the " Black apple tree" and plant them in previous years with no luck. At least then I could plant a new one for my Pap if this one dies.

Also when and how is the best

Also when and how is the best way to prune or cut back these trees. I live in central PA. I don't want to cut off to much. And how soon after major pruning can I expect to have good fruit growing. Thank you again for any help.

I planted 1 Honey crisp tree

I planted 1 Honey crisp tree and 1 pear tree going on 3 years now and no fruit producing. Not even blossoms. Very puzzled. And the leaves look as they are getting eaten up. The trees are double in size and appear to be very strong. But do not understand what is going on with them.

Honeycrisp requires another

Honeycrisp requires another apple or crabapple variety for cross-pollination in order to produce fruit; most pear trees also require a compatible pear variety. However, the lack of blossoms suggest that something else is also going on. It likely is that  your trees are just too young yet to flower. Sometimes it takes 3 to 6 years (depending on variety) before they will start producing flowers and fruit. Other causes can be too much nitrogen fertilizer, which may contribute to leaf growth rather than blossoms or lack of enough sunlight. Make sure that the variety is suitable for your area: Apples and pears require a certain amount of cold to fruit; it you live in a warm climate, certain varieties will not flower. Improper pruning can also be a culprit.

I have 1 apple tree. Will it

I have 1 apple tree. Will it produce fruit by itself or do I need to have 2 trees?

Hi, Karen: You ask a simple

Hi, Karen: You ask a simple question whose simple answer unfortunately is not too helpful -- It depends on what type (variety) of tree you have. Some are self-fruitful (can set fruit by themselves) and some require cross-pollination from another tree, usually by honeybees. If yours is in the second category, there is still hope for you if somehow bees from another near enough tree are able to find their way to yours. Thanks for asking!

I have 2 dwarf apple trees.

I have 2 dwarf apple trees. the are 14 years old. the bark on one of them is peeling off in a strange pattern. Is it normal for this to happen or is the tree sick?

That depends. Older trees

That depends. Older trees sometimes peel bark naturally. But pests, diseases, and cultural problems can also cause peeling bark. Check for holes or grooves in the bark and wood--borers (such as the flatheaded apple tree borer) sometimes lay eggs in bark; the larvae can chew and drill galleries in the underside of the bark, causing the bark to peel off in large patches. Other insects can also affect the bark. Sunscald can also cause peeling bark.

My honey crisp is 3 years old

My honey crisp is 3 years old and about 4 foot high. it growing slowly . i will try the 10-10-10 and see if that helps . I also have some red spots on the leaves ,they look healthy . can you help me please . I have also grown a tree from seed .It is about 5 foot is it to late to graph it? just read about this.

I planted two apple trees two

I planted two apple trees two years ago I have not seen a bloom on them they are growing and doing very well they have leaves on them just not any blooms. Why not and what did I do wrong.

Your tree may not be mature

Your tree may not be mature enough to reproduce. If your tree is two years old, it is likely to be another 2 to 3 years before you can expect it to start blooming. Some cultivars take longer.

have a gala 4years old blooms

have a gala 4years old blooms on it when purchased .hasn't bloomed since.a wonderful tree big growing other apple trees in area.i want to plant another for pollination but if it doesn't bloom what good would the second tree do thanks

My trees have been around for

My trees have been around for years. I have a problem with insect and do not know just how to eliminate them. They bore into the very small fruit to the core. I have pulled a lot of the apples and dropped them on the ground but there are many others that have the black spots on them indicating that they have been attacked. The apples are about golf ball size now and looking good except for the worms. What can I do next year season the eliminate these pest? Thanks

Hi Robert, There are several

Hi Robert,
There are several different apple boring insects. See our pest information at the top of this page and then go to to read more about these insects.

My trees have apples about

My trees have apples about golf ball size now. Most of the apples have been attacked by one insect that bores to the core. The insect attack the apples when the apples are very small. What are these pest and how and when can they be eliminated. Do they start as a flying insect and over winter in the ground? I wonder? Any help would be appreciated.

We have a dwarf fuji apple

We have a dwarf fuji apple tree in a wine barrel. This will be the second season. The apples started to get soggy and shrink and fall off the tree. Am I over watering? Plus, I was adding acidic pH4.5 water to the soil. Did this cause it? Plus I gave it a little fertilizer during growing season. Can I save these apples? How should I care from the point on?

Containers can be tricky to

Containers can be tricky to keep perfectly watered. They dry out quickly but can also get too soggy. You need to let the soil dry out between waterings and make sure that the wine barrel drains well. Most apple trees prefer slightly acidic soil with a pH range of 5.0 to 6.8. You may want to test the soil to make sure that the soil is not too acidic.

I planted several apple seeds

I planted several apple seeds from two apples two and a half years ago, out of about 12 seeds I got 4 trees. All 4 trees look different. I planted them in 5 gal buckets and keep them outside,In the winter I burry the buckets so the dirt is at ground level and covered with leaves. This last winter was harsh and 1 of the four died. 1 plant is about six feet tall, one plant is about 3 foot tall and has red trunk. the last one is about 18" tall and is more like a bush than a tree. All three have different leaves. Is this normal?I started these to plant up north for deer feed so as long as they produce some kind of apple I'll be happy.

Interesting! You can grow an

Interesting! You can grow an apple tree from seed but you will not get the apple that grew on the mother tree. Apples do not breed true and that is why seeds are not usually sold. The best way to duplicate an apple tree variety is to graft scions from the mother tree to appropriate rootstock. So, this is normal and the deer should enjoy whatever they get!

so with that said, could I

so with that said, could I use the tree's I grew as rootstock? Our property has some real old apple trees on it I could take graphs from?

Tell me the tye of soil that

Tell me the tye of soil that is good for planting apple

See soil information above.

See soil information above.

We have planted seeds on Feb.

We have planted seeds on Feb. 22 from an old apple tree and have nine seedlings up. King Henry and his wives are growing really well(5"-12" high) and we have transplanted them into two inch peat pots. Our question is when should they be planted outdoors and is there anything special we should do with them besides staking them up?

Hi Ruth, It's recommended to

Hi Ruth,
It's recommended to transplant apple seedlings when they are 8 to 10 inches tall. Water the plants once about every 10 days. Continue watering them until they are well-established.

I have started seeds from an

I have started seeds from an apple tree called a "Yellow Transparent" locally we call them "August Whites" these trees are originally from Russia and not only are they self pollinating but they are an original tree not crossed with any other apple and they will grow true to the parent tree. There is a name for this type of tree that will produce original apples from seed, but I cant remember does anyone know. Also does anyone know any other of these types of apple trees that have not been crossed. I would be happy to trade some of my seeds to someone who can get me equivalent seeds from another of these type of trees. Thanks

Hi Robert, Search for antique

Hi Robert,
Search for antique or heirloom apple varieties online and you will find much information about these amazing trees.

I just planted 3 varieties of

I just planted 3 varieties of apple trees, one dwarf red delicious, one regular size golden delicious and a green apple tree, about 1 and a half months ago. All my other fruit trees that I have planted already have signs of life (green leaves, blossoms etc.) but I haven't seen any change in my three apple trees. How long before I know if they are still good or if I need to replace them? It is now March 23. I have read that apple trees take time to fruit, but I just want to make sure they are still alive I guess.

Spring planted apple trees

Spring planted apple trees are usually dormant when you plant them. It may take them a little time to start showing growth. Make sure to water them and you can also cut a small branch a see if it is green inside.

For grapes, ice water was

For grapes, ice water was used on the roots to trick the plant into fruiting and it did. Isnt that great. Could the same technique be used on apple plant. Has anyone tried this method before. May i know how much to purchase 2 varieties (that can cross-polinate) and to have this shipped to Singapore. I sure would love to try the ice water technique. Even if it doesnt work I am still happy to have a sterile apple plant in my garden. Makes very good conversation pieces. Which varieties are more resilient to high humidity and high temperature. Can anyone help.

Am in Uganda (East Africa)

Am in Uganda (East Africa) and i want to grow Apple trees so where can i find good quality Apple trees for planting.

I recently bought a gala

I recently bought a gala apple and a golden delicious apple. I live in South Texas. My Gala apple has bloomed and it looks good, but the golden delicious just looks like it's budding. It doesn't look different than when we planted it. Does it take a long time to bud and spring? Also, I put a bit of neem oil on both, but will this affect pollination? :( I am a first time planter. Thanks!

Golden delicious apples bloom

Golden delicious apples bloom mid- to late-season. The neem oil should not affect pollination.

I am reading your other

I am reading your other replies, and one of them says that the trick is the trees to bloom at the same time. would I have an issue with Gala and Golden delicious since they will bloom in different times?

Planted Fuji and winesap

Planted Fuji and winesap Apple trees 3 yrs ago they have not bloomed why not please help

Winesap is sterile and

Winesap is sterile and doesn't pollinate, but the Fuji (which is self-fertile) could pollinate it. The trick is that the apple trees must be near each other--AND bloom at the same time.
Also, you need your friends, the bees, to do the pollination. So, avoid insecticides during the blooming period.
Hope this helps.

I have same problem with

I have same problem with lemon & orange trees!

I live in Singapore (just 80

I live in Singapore (just 80 miles north of the Equator). The weather is hot and humid all year round. Can apple tree grow in this climate. just for info, someone working for the Nparks here in Singapore managed to grow from seed (not sure on the variety) and is now about a metre tall.

I' v planted. 10 grafted

I' v planted. 10 grafted rootstock. M9 of spur variety 3 yrs back in north east facing well drained lofty soil at altitude of 6600 feet with Average of 1500 chilling hrs/winter, but there seems a problem with growth as they are only grown half a feet in 3 yrs, though i v used cowdung , fertilizer. And area gets proper sumlight , tested d soil. Too with ph 6.5 , prunned it little n watered it regularly though leaves seems good n no pests rodent ao any sign of disease but no results no growth , help me

Your climate may not be ideal

Your climate may not be ideal for the variety of apples that your are growing. The high altitude and maybe cooler nights in the summer may hamper the growth of the trees. We suggest that you contact the nursery where you bought the trees to see if they have any suggestions.

I live in Central Illinois

I live in Central Illinois (zone 6a) and I am considering converting some of my corn/soybean fields to a small orchard. Are there any precautions to take with the current corn/soy soil and what are some good starter varieties of apple trees?

Hi Stephen, We suggest that

Hi Stephen,
We suggest that you do a little bit of research before starting the orchard. You may also want to test the soil to see what you need to add to it for best apple growing results. Visit your local extension service online to get local apple growing advice.

Just planted a jonathon and

Just planted a jonathon and granny smith. Wanted to know if next fall I would have apples on my drawf trees

Dwarf apple trees generally

Dwarf apple trees generally take two to four years to grow fruit.

I live in zone 9 on the

I live in zone 9 on the middle Texas coast, and have bought a Golden Dorsett and an Anna tree that are about five feet high to plant this fall. I also have three smaller Granny Smith trees to plant, but those were grown from seeds. Will the Granny Smiths still be useful pollinators even though the apples might not be edible?

There are several

There are several considerations. Anna and Dorsett Golden are a perfect pair as to pollination, and they are both low-chill varieties. Granny Smith requires a bit more chill hours (about 400 to 500 hours vs. 200 to 300 for the others) to blossom, and is said to grow to Zone 8. We're not sure how it would do in your Zone 9, but it is certainly worth a try. As you stated, too, the seedlings grown from seed from a Granny Smith apple may not come true--so you may not get edible apples, and your trees may not perform the same as a true Granny Smith--as to chill hours, hardiness, bloom time, etc. Granny Smith tends to be a later season variety, ripening in Texas around September, whereas Anna and Dorsett Golden are more early season, ripening in late June/early July. It could be that your Granny Smith offspring might bloom too late to pollinate the others. For more information, you might ask the company where you bought your Anna and Dorsett Golden apple trees about pollination compatibility with Granny Smith. Or, try contacting your county's Cooperative Extension:
You might also be interested in:

so i live in utah and want to

so i live in utah and want to try to grow a McIntosh apple tree but i dont even know if you can plant them in our climate, also hard to find some for sale.

Krys, Yes, you can grow

Krys, Yes, you can grow apples, including Macs, in Utah. Here is a helpful list of different apple varieties to consider: You'd need to research your local tree nurseries to see which varieties they carry or contact your cooperative extension.

I just cleared about 2 acrse

I just cleared about 2 acrse in Nova Scotia Canada and I found about 15 big apple trees,Can I cut them down to about 4 feet and graft then they are about 10 to 20 feet tall and a mess with about 3 to 4 bases together.If i can what is the best time of year to do this

Old apple trees are good

Old apple trees are good hosts for new grafts. Leave some healthy branches on the tree. The limbs can be any length but for best results their diameters should be 3/4” to 2” at the points where they’ll be cut off to receive the new scions. Best time to graft is just before the buds open in late winter or in early spring.


I live in the middle of

I live in the middle of Wisconsin. My Cortland semi dwarf trees have their first apples! 1 on one. And 2 on the other. When should they be picked? Not enough to test. Very nice apples!

Cortland apples are usually

Cortland apples are usually harvested in early fall when they loose their green background color and develop a full, bright red color.

I have 4 dwarf Honeycrisp

I have 4 dwarf Honeycrisp apples trees (I live in PA. poconos area) I planted them at least 5 yrs ago and they were supposed to be 2-3 yrs old when I bought them only 1 tree get flowers but only gets about 5 apples which stay very small. What might be the problem. Area is well drained and gets mostly sun.

Sometimes Honeycrisps take

Sometimes Honeycrisps take even longer to produce and are temperamental. When you say that they get "mostly sun," are they getting at least 6 hours of direct sunlight?  Are you pruning correctly or have you been stubbing back branches when you prune?

My neighbor and I rent

My neighbor and I rent separate houses on the same property and share a yard. He took it upon himself and decided to "prune" the apple tree in our mutual yard and completely butchered it. It's no more than a 4 foot stump, now. I'm not sure what type of apple tree it is/was. Will this tree come back or has he killed it? I know some trees grow back from a stump; but will a fruit tree, specifically a species of apple?

Apple trees do not grow back

Apple trees do not grow back from a stump. In addition, any serious pruning should take place in late winter, just before spring, while the tree is dormant. We'd suggest you call a local tree care specialist.

can a 50+ apple tree be

can a 50+ apple tree be rejuvenated and produce? We do not know the variety. We are in RI.
Thank you.

Yes! Old apple trees are

Yes! Old apple trees are worth saving--as long as the branches seem healthy and the trunk is not split or rotting. You'll need to prune the old trees in late winter or early spring before the leaves begin to appear.  Up to one-third of the live wood on an apple tree can be removed each year. If a tree has been abandoned for a long time, cut only diseased and damaged branches before removing one-third of the live wood. After pruning, be sure to clear out the area around the trees so that they can get sunlight and air circulation. See more about pruning trees above.

I have a small apple tree I

I have a small apple tree I grew from a seed but now it's leaves seem to have something like powdery mildew on the lower leaves. If it is, can I use a regular fungicide on it? Thank you

To control for apple powdery

To control for apple powdery mildew, a good fungicide
spray program is generally required for control, starting with a pre-bloom spray. Here is more information:
At this point, we would advise that you speak to your county cooperative extension experts for on-the-ground advise and sprays that are permitted in your area.

Does Apple grow in tropical

Does Apple grow in tropical climates. I am collecting various seeds to try in Africa. Are there any specific species that will thrive well in such climates.

I just ran across a

I just ran across a "Tropical" nursery for apple trees that could grow in Africa. They might have some info for you. See link:

Thanks Michael. I knew it

Thanks Michael. I knew it could be done.

i am thinking of planting a

i am thinking of planting a few apple trees in my backyard but i dont know where to have the soil tested can i put cow manure in planting the soil there is probabll very poor maybe grimes golden red delicous andapple bud i am in brampton ont

Apple trees grow well in a

Apple trees grow well in a wide range of soil types. The soil needs to drain well, however, and not get soggy. They prefer soils with a texture of sandy loam to a sandy clay loam soil. Ideal soil pH for apple trees is near 6.5. You can usually get a free or low-cost soil test for your county cooperative extension. If your soil doesn't drain well, plant trees higher than they are planted in the nursery (2 to 4 inches higher). All the best!

I still don't know how far

I still don't know how far they away for them to grow.

Hi, Adam, We have added more

Hi, Adam, We have added more information to this page to answer your question. Tree spacing depends on the rootstock you choose and other factors. An M.9 dwarf is 4 to 8 feet and this goes up to a seeding which is 15 to 18 feet. Ask your plant nursery for the tree spacing that fits the rootstock that you purchase.

I have an apple tree, and I

I have an apple tree, and I have a ruby red greatfruit on one side and an navel orange tree on the other side will I still get apples? My apple tree blumed but I dont see any apples tree looks very healthy.I have seen bees on my treeWhat can I do to make it blum some more?

You may need another apple

You may need another apple tree to cross pollinate your tree. Do you know the variety that you have? If you do, you can look it up online. As a rule at least two varieties of apple trees is needed to maximize fruit production and quality.

I'm using Bonide fruit tree

I'm using Bonide fruit tree spray concentrate insecticide and fungicide and it says do not spray more than 2 times per year. how often should I spray a dwarf apple tree and when

We advise that you check with

We advise that you check with the Bonide company regarding the latest labeling. However, note that this product contains an insecticide that may harm bees which pollinate apple trees so do not use during bloom time at all; it's for well after the petals have fallen.

i bouth 8 apples trees last

i bouth 8 apples trees last year and there was son apples in it and this years the leaf are comming but not even 1 flower grows and the leaft are green and it look like there dry out can you tell me why it dont blom and thank you for your time

There are a couple common

There are a couple common reasons why apple trees do not blossom: 1. Not enough sunlight. 2. Not enough "chill hours" as apples need a minimum number of hours with temperatures under 45 degrees. 3. Too much nitrogen fertilizer in the soil around the tree. Your comment about "dried out" leaves concerns us. We suggest sending or taking leaf samples to your county cooperative extension. Dried-out leaves can indicate a serious root problem.

We didn't even realize we had

We didn't even realize we had an apple tree and no idea how it got there - been in the house for 30 years and nephew when out back two years ago and picked five big juicy awesome tasting apples of the tree. Nothing last Summer - now it is is full of flowers(BLOSSOMS) Will these turn into apples and when?

In order for those blossoms

In order for those blossoms to become apples, you need 1) two or more apple tree varieties near each other so that they can pollinate and 2) bees which carry the pollen from one flower to another. You'll know if they are pollinated: If apple seeds develop, the petals from the blossoms will fall off. Next the fruit will start developing. So -- there must have been a nearby tree that is was blooming at the same time that yours bloomed last year?

hi i live in nigeria nd i'll

hi i live in nigeria nd i'll like to know if my apple can really grow in country?

I think this is weird. We

I think this is weird. We have an apple tree with an almost totally grown apple on it that is now blossoming.

Hi - We live in Madison, WI

Hi - We live in Madison, WI and this is our 3rd spring in this house. There's a mature, or seems to be a fairly mature, apple tree in our backyard (south-facing) that produced a beautiful crop of large honey-crisp type apples last year. (Even with the drought -- we watered it pretty regularly.) But it appears that there aren't going to be any apples on it this year (as was the case two seasons ago as well.) Is it common for some apple trees to only produce fruit every other year?? There is another apple tree in the back yard that has never produced more than a handful of apples that seems to have a few more apples forming this year. That one is a flowering apple tree whereas the main one that produced the great apples last year does not flower much at all but otherwise has a lot of new growth and looks healthy. (We pruned it a fair amount late late last Fall.) Any thoughts about the lack of apples?

There could be a couple of

There could be a couple of reasons for the lack of fruit this year. Heavy pruning, where you remove a portion of a branch, will stimulate more vegetative growth and delay flowering.
A normal apple tree develops buds for next year at the same time it matures the fruit for the current crop. Last fall your tree may have used most of its energy to mature the many apples and formed less new buds for this years.
Late frosts in the spring can also damage the new flower buds.

We get apples on our trees

We get apples on our trees but they never get big and they fall off before they have a chance to get bigger. What are we doing wrong?

There are many reasons why

There are many reasons why apples fall off the tree early. Often, it's due to lack of good pollination by bees. Also, apples must have cross-pollination in order to develop fruit; they cannot pollinate themselves or any flowers of the same apple variety. Plant at least two varieties of apple trees together in order to maximize fruit production and quality. Make sure that the varieties you choose have overlapping bloom dates.
Fertility is also influenced by good tree nutrition. Take soil tests and follow fertilization guidelines based on these tests; do not overfertilize. As a general rule, we apply 1 pound of 10-10-10 fertilizer to each tree the first year, 2 pounds the second year, and 3 pounds the third year up to a maximum of 5 to 6 pounds for a mature tree. Apply in late winter or early spring before growth begins--and do not apply to near the tree trunk.

I have a red delicious apple

I have a red delicious apple tree and it is probably about a year old and a half old. I took a seed and refrigerated it with a damp paper towel which worked really well and it has been in a pot ever since. The tree is really thin and the leaves start about one and a half feet from the bottom. It is just over three feet now. I was just wondering how long I can keep my tree in a pot? I was not planning on keeping it in a pot for so long but I moved from OH to SC and now I live in an apartment so I am unable to plant it. Right now it is sitting on the balcony and seems to be doing really well. It dropped off its leaves in the winter and I thought it was dead but then it grew them back and has grown almost two feet since spring started. I won't be living in a house for another 6 to 8 months though. Will my tree survive until then? Also, it is siting in OH dirt right now and I have noticed that the dirt around here is a reddish color. Will the change in soil be a problem? Oh and should I water it in the winter? Sorry for all the questions, I have never grown a tree before but it is pretty exciting because I never expected my seeds to actually sprout in the refrigerator. It was more of an experiment than a plan.

Your tree will be fine in a

Your tree will be fine in a container for another few months. You may have to repot it into a bigger pot. Fall and spring are the best times to transplant into the ground. Make sure the soil is well-drained and not too wet. Soil needs to be moderately rich and retain moisture as well as air. Add lots of compost to the planting hole. The tree goes dormant in the winter so there is no need to water it. Good luck with your "experiment"!

I was lucky enough to plant

I was lucky enough to plant an apple seed, and it grew. It is a few years old, now (didn't seem to grow past 6inches the first few years), and is about 3-4ft tall. It is quite thin, but is full of leaves and has a few branches. I now know to prune it in Fall. My question is how do I grow more? I have tried several times, since, to grow from seed, with no results. I made sure that I used organic apples, and tried pears. I don't mind what it turns into- in fact it seems like fun to find out in later years. What kind of apple, or pear, is most likely to grow?

Try exposing the seeds to

Try exposing the seeds to cold first. Place the seeds in a plastic bag with a damp paper towel. Put the bag in the refrigerator for about 6 weeks. Then plant in a pot with soil. Only about 30% of the seeds will germinate. Good luck!

Apple Trees

How do you graft an apple tree scion into a suitable apple rootstock?

no blossoms last year

I planted 2 young honeycrisp trees a few years ago (the kid at the store said I need 2 trees but left out the all-important words "of different varieties" - big sigh). Last year I got no blossoms at all. This year they look good and have lots of leaves, but no blossoms yet. My next door neighbor has a very large apple tree and he got no blossoms last year either. This year his tree is all leafy, but no blossoms yet. I'm counting on his tree to pollinate mine. When do apples bloom? Sorry, I'm a newbie.

Apples bloom in the spring

Apples bloom in the spring after the leaves first come out. You will see a group of flower buds in the center of the leaves. Here in New Hampshire our trees are in full bloom.

wow apples are nice

wow ive just grown my own apple tree, and we are loving it. we are justed beginers!!!hoping for the best with are apple tree.

Where to buy

Where in US I can buy young apple tree ofvariety "Close" with its pollinizer?

Thanks for your question. We

Thanks for your question. We have not heard of a variety of apples called 'Close'. Maybe one of our friends can help.

Perhaps it is alliteration

Close and Carlos, when said rapidly, sound similar and may be the cause for confusion here. There is a type of apple tree named Carlos Queen which grows well in zones 2b-6. It is large and green with a red blush. Just a guess at what this could be perhaps, but hope it helps.

Is My Tree a phony McIntosh???

I bought a sale-priced McIntosh-labeled tree about 13 years ago. After about 7 years it finally blossomed and I got 3 little apples. Each year the # of apples increased. I mentioned this to my landscaper (who I trust) and he told me it was a crabapple! It's the only fruit-bearing tree in my yard (whenever I grow something I call it a "science experiment" so that I don't feel too guilty when it dies). This tree began coming full of fruit (about 20 little apples) last year, and this year the flowers are all over the tree! I've looked it up online to see if it's a McIntosh or crabapple, and the flowers look alike. Since I don't eat my science experiments, how do I find out if it's a McIntosh or a crabapple tree? Thank you!!!

crab apples will be a lot

crab apples will be a lot smaller than mcintosh apples. and they're usually all green, and very sour.

Thank you!

I hadn't thought of that! Thank you! They are red and have seeds, so I guess they are McIntosh afterall! Maybe I'll eat one this summer. Take care, Becky

I don't grow apples

...I happened on this doing research for a story but I LOVED it. I love apples and discovered I love reading about them. Very interesting and maybe I'll try a couple of apple trees. I also learned that I should not have so radically pruned my flowering crab when it was so young. :( Any hope it will recover? It's five years old, thin and spindly but healthy.

Your crab apple tree will do

Your crab apple tree will do fine. It will grow back. In the future just prune to open up the branches to let more sun and air into the tree.

Is my tree gonna make it?

I ate a giant green granny apple and I planted the seed. It was growing fast and good n healthy.I went on vacation and my brother (smh) didn't water the plants so it lost all of its leaves. I changed pots because the pot it was in was too small. The pot is about 12in high and the tree is about 3ft high. The bark is pretty strong but because of the winds I put in a stick so that it doesn't break. It has five small branches and a leaf appeared on it. It's been a couple of months since its had a leaf. But I didn't give up. Do you think that by the time summer comes around it will grow back its leaves? It also has what looks like two smaller apple trees starting to grow on the base of this tree. Should I cut them off or just let them grow? I don't know if telling you I live in California helps.

Let the tree grow another

Let the tree grow another month or so to see if it will have more leaves. Leave one of the smaller trees to grow in case you have to cut the original tree back.

Be aware that apples do not reproduce true from seed so the fruit is unlikely to resemble the granny apple the seed came from.

Thanks you!

Thanks for the tip. I'm really hopping it continues to grow I'm really proud of my tree. Every time I tell someone I grew it from a seed from an apple i ate they never believe me. Hopefully I don't have to cut off the tall part of the tree.

I've heard about that before. When I was told that most likely the apples grown on the tree wont be like the one i ate I looked it up and was disappointed but none the less I was thrilled that I was even able to grow an apple tree.

Texas apples

Bought 2 apple trees. Both labels say to zone 8..we live on the border line of zone 8 and zone 9..should I plant them in full sun or filtered sun?

We're happy to hear you

We're happy to hear you bought low-chill apples suited for your zone. Even in your zone, full Sun exposure is required for fruit-producting plants. Make sure your soil is tested and has the right pH before you plant. Often the pH is low and you need to apply lime. Calcium deficiency is common in Texas apples. Also, you'll usually need to supplement with fertilizer, especially nitrogen. Call your county cooperative extension for local advice.

When do I plant?

The seedling I got from an apple just sprouted about a week ago and already is about an inch tall. My dad and I don't know when to plant my seedling outside or when it will bear fruit. Please reply soon.

Keep the seedling in a pot

Keep the seedling in a pot until it is about 2-3 feet high. You can put the pot outside if the weather is warm. Plant the tree in the ground this fall if it is big enough. It will take years until the tree will bear fruit. You also may need another apple tree for cross pollination.

Young apple trees bought in bags

Dear Sir or Madam,

I bought two dwarf apple trees at Costco, a Red Gravenstein and another that had several types of apples on it. The roots were in bags with dirt. I was wondering how long it is feasible to keep the trees in the bags before planting?

Greetings and thanks from Christina

You can keep them in the bags

You can keep them in the bags for 2 to 3 weeks but make sure to keep them in a cool location and keep the soil moist. Ideally the trees need to be planted as soon as possible.


I planted 4 Golden Ginger trees from seeds. Not knowing I had to have other varieties to produce apples. We have old apple trees about 200 feet down a hill. What is the correct distance for trees to cross pollinate?

Pollinators should not be

Pollinators should not be farther than 200 feet away for standard trees. Often 100 feet is recommended. Spacing should be even closer for semi-dwarf and dwarf trees.

apple germination

while cutting up apple from store found seed it was starting to germinate planted in in potting soil now have apple tree about 2" tall how do i keep it going????

You can keep the seedling in

You can keep the seedling in the pot or plant it in a bigger pot. Place it in a sunny window and keep the soil moist. Plant the tree outdoors this spring. When the tree is about 2 to 3 feet tall tie it to a stake to protect it from damage.

slow growing trees

Hello, I planted one golden and one red apple tree about 3 years ago. Though they have grown but neither of these trees have shown much height or width growth. Their trunks have also remained small and they don't carry many leaves during spring or summer months. The trees are about 8 ft tall but the branches are thin. What should I do to promote growth and hopefully enjoy the fruits one day. Thanks!!

apple tree vigor

Factors including growth habit (dwarf, semi-dwarf, or standard); cultivar; rootstock; environmental conditions (spacing, light, water, soil nutrients, winter/wind protection, etc.); care (such as proper pruning), pests/diseases, etc., will all affect the vigor and the number of years in which your apple trees will establish themselves fully and start to bear fruit.

Have your soil tested to make sure it is fertile enough for your young trees. Keep the area weeded. Make sure that the trees are getting enough sunlight and are not exposed to constant wind. Keep them watered during drought. It could also be that you have a rootstock or cultivar that encourages slower growth. If that is the case, everything is probably on track, but it may take several more years for the tree to fully establish. Pruning while the tree is dormant can help to stimulate growth in spring (keep in mind, though, that this can delay fruiting); in addition to the advice in the article above, ask a local nursery about how to prune young apple trees to increase vigor. Also, during the growing season, you can try bending a branch or two into a horizontal position for a few weeks, as described in the article above, to encourage branching.

Thanks very much. My tree is

Thanks very much. My tree is in a well fertilized area, well watered and weed free. It is also pest and disease free. I will follow your advice and hopefully will write back in a couple of years. Thanks very much again, this was very helpful!!


I am young, but old enough to start a family, 25, and want to grow an apple tree in hopes that one day my children will be able to pick and eat fruit from it! My grandparents have an apple tree in their yard, and I loved eating fruit from it, I also have 2 peach trees and a pair tree! All the trees have been bought from nurseries, but I want to know how to go about growing my own apple tree from a seed! Where do I find the seeds? It says that 1 from an apple wont produce fruit or may not produce good fruit! So any suggestion on where to find a good seed?

You can grow an apple tree

You can grow an apple tree from seed but you will not get the apple that grew on the mother tree. Apples do not breed true and that is why seeds are not usually sold. The best way to duplicate an apple tree variety is to graft scions from the mother tree to appropriate rootstock.

New to apple trees

Weve just moved into a new house which has an apple tree in the garden. It's pretty big and needs a good prune in a few weeks (so I've been told). I picked a few apples yesterday but it is quite big so couldn't reach many at all and even with a ladder we only reached the lower branches. Quite a few of the (green) apples had bugs in and on them. Most of the rest don't seem to look all that great - some parts are green on the outside and the rest of the apple is quite dark. What's normal? Which should I avoid eating? Have young children and don't want to make them ill

New to Apple Trees

What's normal? Your first task should be to find out what kind of apple tree it is. Take a few of the apples and a few leaves to a local nursery and ask them for their best guess. Maybe you'll need to have someone come out and look at the tree to be sure. Based on that, you'll have a better idea of what's normal (presuming you mean apple color inside and out, etc.), and should be able to gather a lot more info about the care, pruning, eating, etc. For now, avoid the bug-infested or -bitten apples. Generally, apples are a shade of white inside (the flesh), so avoiding brown flesh seems like the right idea. You—not your children—might try a nibble of the white flesh of an otherwise healthy apple and see how it tastes. (You can spit it out instead of swallowing it, if you are especially concerned.) Even if the taste is—er—unappealing now, it could improve if the tree is given the appropriate care. That's best determined by finding out its we're back to the beginning. Good luck!

Thank you so much, will

Thank you so much, will definitely do this!!!

No Apples!!!??!!

my mother has planted an apple tree a couple years back. the tree grew big and looked normal. the only problem is that the tree will not make ONE apple!!!! we have two japan plum trees and two peach trees somewhat by the apple tress and they all bear fruits. why won't our apple tree bear any apples?

Need a pollinator

Just like people, it takes two to tango. Plant a different apple tree that can pollinate the first one.

Apple tree shock??

I recently planted 2 apple and 2 peach trees from orchard stock. My Honey Crisp is not looking so good, it is very wilted. Any suggestions? Is there a way to help this tree if it is shock?

If this is transplant shock,

If this is transplant shock, make sure that it is getting enough water. Water deeply so that it reaches the entire root system (which can extend beyond the branches)—but don’t water so that the soil is soggy (an inch per week is usually good, but monitor closely). Water regularly and add mulch to conserve water and prevent weeds. Do not prune the tree at this time, except for damaged branches. As for other causes of wilting, was the plant rootbound (roots dense and circling around each other) when you planted the tree? Was it planted at the recommended depth? In the recommended soil (loose, not compact)? Does it have enough light? Do you see any spots on the leaves, or signs of pests? If you obtained the tree from a nursery, you might ask for their recommendation; if the plant doesn’t make it, it could be that it is under warranty and they can send you a replacement.

Planting crab apples

I'm looking to plant a few crab apples for deer attraction. My plan us to grow the trees in buckets until large enough to plant in the woods with out fear of animals eating the sapling. How deep to plant the seeds and any pointers to ensure the seed will sprout?

The seed needs cold to

The seed needs cold to germinate; if you are in a cold climate (winter temperatures below 40F), the seed will be OK if you plant in the fall. If your area doesn’t get that cold, then you probably need to stratify the seed before planting; place the seed in a sealed plastic bag filled with a mix of lightly moistened (not wet) peat moss in the refrigerator for 60 to 120 days and then plant. When you are ready to plant, sow the seed at a depth of about 1/2 to 1 inch. Most crabapple cultivars are budded or grafted; you will not get the same plant if you use seed from fruit of these cultivars (however, it could be that the fruit still might be tasty to deer). Crab apples like full sun (at least 8 hours each day), so be sure when you are transplanting them in the woods, that you select a sunny spot.

Crab Apple Tree or Apple Tree

I have purchased a home which has a great big Apple Tree. The Tree was neglected and overgrown. I pruned it a lot in the Spring and it Blossemed nicely and has started to produce little crab apples. My neighbor seems to think it used to be a Real Apple tree. If I keep up with the Pruning and care is there a chance it could be an apple tree jsut producing crab apples due to neglect?

Crab apples are a type of

Crab apples are a type of tree and there are many varieties (e.g., Bailey's, Monrovia, and Jackson and Perkins). They won't turn into an "Apple" tree. Apples and crabapples will pollinate each other. And you can still use the fruit of a crab apple in cooking (applesauce, jelly)! You prune the tree in early spring before it blooms or leafs out. Follow our instructions above for tree care. You may wish to bring a sample to a nearby tree nursery for identification.

Apple Trees

Hi! I have 2 apple trees and a pear tree. We have lived here for 5 yrs and never ate an apple because I heard you can't just wash and eat them. I hate that these apples are going to waste. Do you know if you can just pick and eat off established apple trees? or must they be treated with a chemical spray of some sort? Thank you.

An organic apple is perfectly

An organic apple is perfectly fine to eat! It's the apple trees that are sprayed with pesticides which are of concern.

why doesn't my McIntosh apple tree bare full size apples

I grew a McIntosh from a seed and now the tree is about 30 feet tall but only bares small apples about the size of marbles or a little bigger..can anyone tell me what to do to get them to grow to full size?

We'd suggest that you hand

We'd suggest that you hand thin the tree in late May. There are also fruit-thinning sprays. At this stage, you could take some hand pruners and very gently remove some smaller apples to allow the energy to go into developing bigger apples. It's hard to remove the little apples, but you have to do it!

from seed?

did you catch the part where it said "grew a mcintosh apple from seed"? never heard of a apple growing true from seed,just saying

If you grew an apple tree

If you grew an apple tree from a seed out of a McIntosh apple it won't produce McIntosh apples, because the seed is a cross btwn the McIntosh flower (female) and the apple tree that produced the pollen that fertilized the flower (male). Even if the pollen producer is a McIntosh, the seed won't produce a McIntosh due to genetics. To get a McIntosh apple you need to clone it by grafting a McIntosh scion onto an suitable apple rootstock, like the one you grew.

thinning apples

I just bought a gala & McIntosh tree (fo planting in norther VT), each about 3 to 3-1/2 inch caliper. My supplier said I should thin the apples to only about 12 per tree to help the roots get better established. Is this true? If I thin so no branch gets overloaded and no apples are closer than 4 inches to each other, can I "safely" grow moe than a dozen this season?

Thanks for any advice.

Yes, apples should be thinned

Yes, apples should be thinned for good fruit size and encourage bloom next year. It may seem extreme but it really does produce a higher-quality tree and crop. Cut off enough fruit so that your remaining apples are spaced 4 to 6 inches apart and you leave 1 fruit per bloom cluster (which is generally 5 to 6 blossoms ). You should think the apples when they are about the size of a dime.

Apple Trees

I heard you should not eat apples from a tree in the first or second year? Is this true? We just planted a couple of Honey Crisp Apple trees and they are getting apples. DARE we NOT eat the fruit?

Hmmm...We haven't heard this.

Hmmm...We haven't heard this. In fact, we'd encourage you to pick the apples in the first year after planting to help the tree produce more fruit next year. However, after the first year, thin fruit so it doesn't get overloaded and produces better quality. Also, Honey Crisps can be a tease! Make sure the fruit is truly ripe (all red) before picking. Taste one and you'll see.

Botanical Name: 

Malus domestica

Plant Type: 

Sun Exposure: 

Soil Type: 

Soil pH: 

Hardiness Zone: 

Bloom Time: 

Keep Your New Garden Growing

keepgardengrowingcover.jpgTop 10 Veggies.
Almanac Editors Tips- water, feed, pest control, harvest


You will also be subscribed to our Almanac Companion Newsletter


Solar Energy Production Today

13.50 kWh

Live data from the solar array at The Old Farmer's Almanac offices in Dublin, NH.