How To Grow Apples
How To Grow Apples
Apple trees can be grown in several different ways, either grown up against a wall or simply like a normal tree which is planted in your lawn. You can also train them to grow in pyramid shape so that the fruit is easy to pick.
Preparing Your Site
Whilst you could try growing an apple tree from seed it is not advisable to do so, as the results are unlikely to be good, and it is best to buy a young apple tree from a reliable nursery, as lot of fruit trees get virus diseases.
You should plant your apple tree in weed free soil, however first of all add some well rotted manure in a few months before planting It is best to plant apple trees from October until March, with early November being the best time, as this gives the apple tree time to settle down and for it’s roots to establish themselves before the harshness of winter sets in.
Planting An Apple Tree
Always place your new apple tree into a bucket of cold water for several hours before you plant it out in the garden, as this will ensure the roots are thoroughly watered. Whilst it is soaking dig a 3ft wide, 8 inch deep hole in the ground, and ensure it is big enough to take all of the. Any damaged roots should be cut off with a sharp knife.
Before you plant your apple tree in the ground, drive a wooden stake into the hole to make a support for the tree. You need to do this before planting the apple tree to avoid damaging the roots. Sit your tree next to the stake, and tie the stake to the tree with a cable tie, but leave room for it to grow. As the apple tree grows just cut them off, and tie on a new one.
Ensure that the apple tree’s roots are spread out when you plant the apple tree in the hole. Once you have planted your apple tree fill the hole in with soil and gently tamp it down until it is firm, but do not tread on it too hard though, as you may damage the roots. Leave the soil slightly raised around the apple tree as it will settle down in the coming weeks.
It is highly advisable to prevent damage from wildlife, by placing a wire mesh around the base of your apple tree.
Caring For Your Apple Tree
After planting add an inch of well rotted vegetable compost or peat. Apple trees need a lot of care and need to be trained and pruned throughout their life. You will need to be cut back branches at regular intervals, in order to maintain a good crop of apples. Pruning should be done in August, and also in Winter.
When To Pick Apples
When planting an apple tree in your garden, you must ensure that you purchase a self-fertilising tree, which pollinates itself, otherwise you will wonder why you never get any apples! When it comes to picking apples it is simple, as soon as they start falling off, they are ready to pick. However to maximize your crop then you should pick weaker fruit off as early as possible to encourage the apple tree to grow.