Those red fruits from dwarf apple trees growing nearby are just so tempting. They are within your reach. You may as well pluck one and enjoy it. Notice any difference in taste and texture from this apple from a fruit taken from a standard apple tree? Surely there is none. In fact, the only difference between the two is the size.
By Accident Only
Dwarf trees came about as an accident by nature. No one knows exactly how they came to be. Upon discovery, though, many have taken advantage of dwarf varieties, dwarf apple trees included, since they are easier to grow than standard trees.Standard apple trees can grow up to 30 feet in height while its dwarf varieties reach only up to 12 feet in height.
The Big Advantages of Dwarf Apple Trees
The most obvious advantage that dwarf apple trees have compared to the standard trees is that the branches are easier to prune and the fruits are easier to harvest. This is mainly due to their smaller size.
They also bear fruit sooner. While standard apple trees can take up to a decade to produce fruit, dwarf apple trees can take only as short as three years to give fruit. This is good for commercial plantations and backyard raisers.
In case space is an important factor to consider in any plantation (they truly are), planting dwarf varieties will give way to more trees. Although dwarf apple trees produce fruit in less quantities than standard ones, the less time needed to bear fruit outweighs this factor.
Growing Dwarf Apple Trees
In growing dwarf apple trees, you must remember that they are not grown from seeds, but from grafting. You have a dwarf rootstock and you graft a branch from a standard apple tree on this rootstock. This branch will bear fruit. Since the branch is from a standard apple tree – although the rootstock itself is dwarf – the fruit produced is the common apple that we know, not a miniature fruit.
Dwarf rootstocks are usually weaker than those of full-sized apple trees hence they are often supported at the base. Many prefer stakes, driven to the ground, and the dwarf apple trees secured to the stake with a wire.
Pruning the tree is important to avoid overgrowth of any branches. Trimming dwarf apple trees is recommended to be done during winter when the tree is dormant.
Branches need space so each one can receive enough sunlight and have space to bear fruit. Two feet between them is the recommended distance. Any branch which suffocates another is to be trimmed. Remember to always cut the newer branch. The cut is also made at an angle and never flush with the main trunk of the tree. Pruning dwarf apple trees properly ensures a longer life and better harvest.
Take a Bite
Less work and less cost, more planters have opted to grow dwarf apple trees. It is common to find one bearing fruit in spring, perhaps near your home. So go ahead and take a fruit from dwarf apple trees.