How to Grow Apples
Apple trees are grown from seed. It takes several years to go from the seedling
stage to an apple producing tree. Most people let the garden nurseries start
apple tree seedlings, and nurture them to a size that can be transplanted
to your garden. Then, people buy small trees that are a couple of years old,
from a garden store. When growing apples, plan ahead. If you buy a small
tree, it will take about 3 years to get your first fruit.
Growing an Apple Tree:
Select a location in your yard that receives full sun. Dig a deep hole. Add
plenty of decomposed compost, if available. Mix thoroughly with regular garden
soil. If the apple tree you bought, is inside of a decomposable peat pot,
leave it in the container. It is helpful, (but not required) to slit the
container, to allow roots to more easily exit the container. While making
the slits, be careful not to cut the roots, as you can do more harm than
good. If your tree is in a burlap bag, remove the bag. Gently spread the
roots in the hole you have dug.
Bury the roots of the plant up to where it was in the container. Soak the
soil thoroughly. Add more soil, if needed. Once your new apple tree is planted,
it should grow well with little or no attention. We do recommend staking
the tree in it's first year of life. Strong winds can bend the young sapling,
causing the trunk to grow at an angle. Really strong winds, might even cause
the tree to sway and damage roots.
Tip: Fruit tree fertilizer spikes are a great way to boost the growth
of your new apple tree. The spike slowly releases a fertilizer specifically
formulated for fruit trees.
The size of the apples is dependent upon a number of things. Sometimes,
mother nature pollinates a profusion of blooms. It is possible that
so many apples are on the tree, that the apples are numerous, but small.
Growers can compensate for this by removing a few of the baby apples very
early in the season. Should you do this? Probably not in your first
few years of growing, as you do not have the experience to judge if there
are too many baby apples on the tree. We do recommend removing any apples
that are damaged by insects, leaving good apples to grow big and sweet.
Apple trees and their fruit, are very susceptible to insects and disease.
If you want good apples, you are best advised to apply regular applications
of fruit tree spray. We recommend an all purpose insect and disease spray
available at your local garden store. More on Insects
When using sprays we recommend you follow the directions on the label carefully.
And by all means, wear protective clothing and a mask when spraying.
Once your apple tree is a few years old, it is important to prune the tree
yearly. Pruning removes sapling and non-productive branches that only take
energy from the tree, without producing fruit. It can also be used to keep
top growth limited ,and make your bright, shiny apples more reachable at
harvest time. More on Pruning
Did you Know? Apples are more efficient at waking you up, than caffeine.
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