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Apple tree: everything about cultivation, care and harvest
Apple tree: everything about cultivation, care and harvest

Video: Apple tree: everything about cultivation, care and harvest

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Video: How to Grow Apple Trees - Complete Growing Guide 2023, January

An apple a day, keeps the doctor away”: One apple a day keeps the doctor away. With our tips on everything related to the apple tree, you can look forward to a rich harvest.

The right location for an apple tree

Apple trees usually love sunny places, but, contrary to popular belief, no blazing heat. As a result, you shouldn't plant apple trees exactly south. A south-east or south-west location is more recommended.

Plan your region and its microclimate in your considerations: Some varieties only tolerate certain soils, winds and temperatures. For example, in late frost areas, be sure to choose a late blooming apple tree variety. In general, it is advisable to protect the trees with hedges or the house from strong winds. If this is not possible, use a low-growing tree that offers less wind exposure. The soil should be good and deep, too acidic soil can be limed. Also make sure that the floor is not too damp. Tip: Simply rely on local apple varieties that have been tried and tested in the region for centuries.

The apple cultivation

Apple trees are preferred in autumn. In addition to trees that are already stable, plants that are about three years old are suitable. When growing, note that many varieties cannot fertilize themselves and therefore need a pollinator plant, i.e. at least one more apple tree. The distance between the individual trees must be at least three meters. When planting, clear the soil of weeds and dig a hole that is larger than the root ball. Spread roots and cut off damaged ones. If the soil is acidic, maybe spread a few limestones in the hole and slowly fill up with earth. Press the floor down again and again at the end. For young and weak trees or in windy regions, be sure to bury a stake and tie the apple tree to it. Finally, pour well and add potassium if necessary.


If several apple trees are to be planted, then only at least three meters apart.

Photo: iStock / Janny2

Apple tree care

There is nothing for nothing. Planting a fruit tree alone is not enough. If you want a good yield, you have to take care of the tree. Apple trees need a lot of water. So water regularly in dry times: small trees are given about 20 liters, big trees about 40 liters a day. Fertilizing doesn't hurt either, but too much does.

The tree slice

Cover the tree slice (the soil within a radius of about 1.5 meters around the trunk) in the spring with a layer of compost or mulch. The trunk itself should not come into contact with it, otherwise it threatens to rot. Of course there are also special fruit fertilizers in specialist shops. Always ensure a weed-free tree slice. In summer, nasturtium has proven itself for this area, which keeps aphids away from the tree by pulling them onto itself. In autumn and winter you can rake the fallen leaves of the tree around the trunk. If the apple tree is in a meadow, it is advisable to mow regularly.

The strain


A white trunk reflects the sunlight and the trunk does not heat up as much.

Photo: iStock / tassefski

The trunk needs special care. In autumn you should remove lichen and moss from the bark with a wire brush and then paint white with lime or special colors. The advantage: vermin, pests and diseases have less surface to attack. The trunk reflects the sun in the spring and therefore does not heat up. This means that there are no large differences in temperature between day and night, which prevents cracks in the bark.

Treat wounds in the apple tree

If branches or the bark are damaged, you should cleanly cut the damaged branches on the trunk or main branch of the apple tree and wipe the wounds with wound closure material. A tree that bears too much fruit is also a problem. As soon as this becomes acute, you should react: either cut off excess flowers or small apples. This results in better and bigger fruits in the first year and prevents a total crop failure in the next year, which often follows successful years. Experts speak of alternance, which roughly means that the tree will rest the following year. Find out in a detailed article how to correctly cut your apple tree.

Store apples correctly

Most apple trees bloom in April and May. Differences can arise due to the variety, location, climate and weather deviations. In the case of particularly flower-intensive vintages, some flowers should be cut off to get stronger and larger apples during the harvest. A tree with too many fruits can rarely cope with it. The time of harvest fluctuates as well as that of flowering. Apples generally ripen between August and October. Apples are ripe when they can be easily removed from the branch, green apples turn slightly yellow and reddish bright red.

Korb mit frischen Äpfeln
Korb mit frischen Äpfeln

Basket of fresh apples "Evelina"

Photo: Fotolia / Johanna Mhlbauer

There are also a few things to consider when storing the apples: If you harvest on hot days, you should let the apples cool down overnight. Only store undamaged fruit in thin and loose layers. Wooden boxes are particularly suitable. Rooms with temperatures around eight degrees Celsius and a very high relative humidity offer ideal conditions. Check the apples for rotting or sick specimens during the storage period and sort them out immediately.

Apples are good for your health. conducive

Apples are considered extremely healthy fruit. Their acid dissolves uric acid and works against rheumatism and gout. Apples are said to protect against cardiovascular diseases. The fructose provides the body with healthy energy, and the apple is said to help and prevent cancer. Dietary fiber regulates digestion, while the abundant pectins can lower cholesterol and bind toxic substances.

Warning: Many people peel the apples before eating and are not doing themselves a favor. Most of the vitamins and other healthy substances are in the shell. Anyone who is afraid of pesticides can use the organically grown apple - or grow it themselves.

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