Plant apples and cut apple tree

With their sweet to sour taste, apples are one of the most popular types of German fruit, and apple trees can easily be planted in any garden. However, before you can decide on one of the many varieties, the ideal location and the available space must be reconsidered.

It is advisable to compare the assortment of some tree nurseries and well-stocked garden shops - so you can find an apple variety that fits perfectly to your own garden and the prevailing climate.

Apples on the branch

The right place for apple trees

An apple tree requires different site conditions. Sun-rich locations promote the fruit aroma and the vitamin content and allow an ideal fruit coloring. The soil should also be able to warm up slightly. Optimal are loose, humus loamy soils that are not prone to waterlogging.


The finish is crucial to the growth of the apple tree. Classic tall stem forms can grow up to ten meters high. They need sufficient space, otherwise they could shade other fruit and vegetables unintentionally.

At the trellis you can better control the growth direction of the fruit tree.

Fruit tree at the trellis

For smaller gardens, therefore, offer space-saving fruit trees that grow not flat but flat on a trellis. The three advantages of the trellis:

  1. The crown of the apple tree does not get so expansive.
  2. The tree can be easily pulled on the wall.
  3. The growth of the apple tree is more controlled.

The young shoots of the tree are still flexible and can be specifically brought into shape without the wood being unnecessarily stressed or even injured.

tip: Attachment with wide straps or elastic rubber bands protects the delicate bark while still allowing for unrestricted growth of the young plant.

Many apple tree varieties need a suitable pollinator.

Fertilization by pollinators


Not all apple varieties can fertilize themselves, so ideally plant apple trees in pairs to bear fruit. It is crucial that both cultivated apple varieties flower at the same time and are at a suitable distance from each other. Explore in advance in a nursery, which Befruchter suits your planned apple variety.

If there is a lack of space, it is possible to resort to refined tree varieties with two or more apple varieties. In these self-pollinated varieties eliminating the plants of a second tree and yet the hobby gardener can enjoy a variety of flavors.

Plant apple tree

In the spring, the apple tree blossoms.

Apple tree blossoms

In addition to the favored apple varieties you have to decide in which growth stage you want to plant the tree. Young plants from the nursery can already bear fruit next year. However, if you plant collected or purchased apple kernels, it can take up to ten years for your tree to bear ripe fruit - but there is no guarantee for that.

The ideal time to plant a young plant is autumn, as the tree must be in a state of hibernation in order to grow properly. If you decide to buy a rootless young plant, the months of October and November have proven to be successful, because the soil is still free from pollutants and the tree is well rooted until spring.

Compared to bare root trees, a container plant can be translated year-round, except in frosty conditions. Nevertheless, the autumn or spring planting has proven itself here too.

At the Buying a young apple tree you should pay attention to the following:

  • The young plant should have a straight trunk.
  • The bark should be healthy and without visual abnormalities or injuries.
  • The side branches should grow horizontally and striving in different directions.
  • A well-developed root system facilitates translation and acclimatization.

Size of the plant hole

When the ideal location has been determined, start digging the round planting hole. This should be at least one and a half times as deep and deep as the roots of your root-bare seedlings. For container goods, the hole should not be much larger than the container in which the apple tree was transported. Then loosen the sole with the help of a digger fork.

tip: The planting site can be optimized by adding compost and fresh plant soil to the excavation.

The post is used by young trees as protection against wind thunderstorms.

Tree is being supported

Support young trees with pole

Young trees make a stable impression, but offer the wind a large attack surface and can very quickly fall over or even break. To protect your apple tree from the wind, every newly planted tree should be stabilized with a pole during the first years.

Injury to the delicate roots can be avoided if this step happens before the actual planting. It is advisable to plan a certain distance between the trunk and the pile in order to prevent tensions and thus to protect the sensitive bark.

Finally attach the planted tree with wide ribbons or a coconut string. The knots should be checked regularly - it is essential to avoid ingrowing.

tip: Hit the pile against the wind direction. So your tree is especially safe in the first years.

Adjust and ideal planting height

Before inserting the roots should be carefully loosened (especially in container goods) and damaged parts should be removed. When subsequently adjusting the young plant, pay attention to a vertical orientation. This is particularly easy if one person holds the tree, while a second person refills the improved Aushuberde.

tip: Place the entire root system in a mixture of rotten garden compost and water for one hour before planting.

It is important to follow the correct planting height at this step. Orient yourself here at the so-called finishing point of the tree. These can be recognized by a thickening or a kink at the root base. The refining site must be hand-wide above the soil after planting to avoid unwanted rooting.

By shaking and lifting slightly, you reduce the resulting cavities. As a result, the roots settle easier and better in the ground. Then firmly earth the soil and water extensively - even in the rain, because roots and soil must be able to connect well.

Cut apple tree

You should also keep tall apple trees in shape regularly.

Cut of a tall apple tree

A young apple tree from a nursery is often cut ready for planting. These trees have a central branch and usually three to four horizontally projecting shoots.

For a normal cut in your own garden is the spring, about a dry day in February or March, since the branches are no longer too fragile and the buds are not expelled yet. Likewise, the cuts still have enough time to heal. The temperatures should not be lower than -5° C.

The cut is important on the one hand for a beautiful shape, as well as for the expulsion of flowers. If the fruit tree is trimmed too late, it does not work properly and bears less fruit. An additional clearing in the summer drives the maturing process of the apples in the autumn, it favors the wood growth.

For branches up to 1.5 cm is an ordinary secateurs, for thicker branches, the use of special pruning shears or a jigsaw is recommended.

When does the pruning take place?

From the flowers finally the fruits are produced.

Blossoming apple tree

Focus on the harvest yield of the previous year in the fall in the intensity of the prune cut: If you have a low harvest, you should cut back much more to encourage the growth of new shoots. On the other hand, you should be more cautious on a large harvest - this will result in smaller new shoots.

tip: Pruning the tree a little more than too little.

In general, the cut should be made at an angle over an outwardly growing bud so that the new shoot can grow towards the sun. If an entire branch is removed, it will be sawn close to the Astring, just above the junction.

Make sure that your cutting guide does not create any new branch forks, as this is where moisture predominates and as a result, rot can form. The resulting interfaces heal on their own - treatment with special sealants is not recommended.

But respectMany apple varieties carry their flowers - and so do their fruits - on two-year old wood. If this cropped prematurely, the harvest could be less or complete. Young branches have a lighter color and can thus be easily distinguished from older wood. If your apple tree belongs to this special category, you should clarify before buying at the nursery.

Branches affected by pruning:

  • All vertically growing branches, the so-called water shoots, must be completely and directly removed from the branch.
  • Crossing branches are pruned due to an existing injury risk - the sensitive bark could be damaged here.
  • Inwardly growing branches usually carry fewer flowers and should be removed.
    By cutting back the treetop you get better air circulation and increased light.
  • Dead wood or damaged branches are generally cut off.

Summer cut at apple trees

An additional summer cut can favor the ripening process of the fruits and prevent fungal infestation, as the crown is better ventilated and the leaves can dry faster. For this purpose, any excess twigs that shade the fruit of other branches by their leaves should be cut back or at least thinned out.

Remove steeply growing branches, as fruits form more quickly and predominantly on horizontal branches. In addition, you can pick conspicuously small apples to provide more nutrients to large fruits.

Here, too, the hobby gardener must always weigh: If too many shoots are removed, this can have a negative effect on the growth of the apples, since they can no longer be adequately supplied. Therefore, you should approach the summer cut with care.

tip: Anyone who attaches glue rings to the branches at an early stage can better protect their fruits from pests such as ants or aphids.

Harvest and store apples

Ripe apples are intensely colored and easy to pick.

Red apples

After flowering, it may come to the natural decay of unripe fruit by mid-July. This fruit case is equivalent to a natural selection, as ripe fruits are caught on the branch and can be harvested by careful picking by hand. As a guide for a good and healthy fruit hang eight apples are on 40 cm branch length.

Ripe apples can be recognized by the fact that they can be picked easily with gentle rotations, have an intensive coloring, cause audibly crisp noises at the time of slicing and have brown kernels.

After harvesting, they begin their biological aging process: the apple matures and becomes sweeter as existing starch residues are gradually converted into glucose. At the same time, the vitamin content decreases and the apple becomes floury. Proper storage can slow down this process.

Apples should be stored side by side and chilled after harvesting.

Store apples next to each other

Ideally, apples should be stored side by side and at a temperature of 4° C. A high humidity and a good ventilation also have a favorable effect.

For example, a perforated plastic bag allows for an ideal low-oxygen atmosphere. In a dark, cool room, the apples from the own orchard stay fresh and crisp for a long time.

Ideal apple varieties for your own cultivation

Would you like to harvest your apples from late summer into autumn, the varieties offer Topaz and Alcmene for planting. The topaz is an apple with a sweet-sour taste, which does not mature until autumn. The Alkmene can be harvested earlier and convinced by its fine-sour note.

Video Board: How to Prune an Apple Tree!