Investing in an Apple Tree

 

 

There are fruit trees available to suit every garden.  They will reward you for years to come with delicious fruit and give structure and a sense of tradition to your garden.

There is a bewildering choice available, especially when it comes to apple varieties.  Luckily the specialist nurseries supplying Fairweather’s Garden Centre provide excellent technical information leaving you to decide what type of apple or apples you want to grow.  Have a think through.

What sort of apple do I like?

A cooker or a desert apple?

A cooker or a dessert apple?

Do you want to juice your apples or make cider?

Big fruits or small?

A sharp tasting or sweet apple?

Which month you would like them to be ripe.  Different varieties crop from August to October.

How am I going to grow and train my apple?

The same variety of apple can be available in different forms (bush, tree, espalier, etc.) as it can be grafted on to different root stocks.   It is the rootstock which will determine the vigour of the plant. If you are choosing from our ready trained stock, the nursery will have selected the correct rootstock and it will be clearly marked on the label.  Commonly used root stocks are;  M27 ( very dwarf),  M26 (semi-dwarf), MM106 (semi-vigorous).

If you wish to grow your apple in a container you must select a very-dwarf rootstock.

 Cordons and columns.

The apple is trained as a single stem with short branches.  They take up little space and so you can grow a selection of different varieties close together – great if you find it hard to decide on a favourite.

Espalier.

The apple is trained with tiered, horizontal branches.  Planted in a row, espaliered apples can make a stylish division within a garden.

Step-over.  Make a good edging to a vegetable plot.

Examples of differently trained apples can be seen in Patrick’s Patch.

Do I need to grow other apples near it to ensure pollination?

Most apples are not able to pollinate themselves and so require pollen from another apple to be delivered to them.  This is why apples are grouped by their flowering periods.  That said, if you live near other gardens it is likely that there will be other apples flowering at the same time as yours; honey bees can cover a three mile radius.

Apple trees are native the United Kingdom and consequently are usually able to overcome minor pests and diseases through a natural balance.

There are good products available to prevent problems.  In Patrick’s Patch you can see the apple trees have grease applied around the trunks to prevent winter moth infestation.  You can also see codling moth traps and a winter wash is applied annually.

We recommend applying a rose fertilizer around the base of fruit trees in the early spring.

To see a full list of all our handy fact sheets click here