Get the plant­ing right

Ap­ples are easy to grow, you can even plant them in a con­tainer, but they need the right con­di­tions if you want to have years of boun­ti­ful har­vests

Gardeners' World - - Apples -

Ap­ples are hap­pi­est planted in the ground where they can re­ally stretch out their roots. The best time to plant them is Novem­ber to March, when they’re dor­mant. Find a sunny, shel­tered spot and im­prove the soil by fork­ing in plenty of com­post or well-rot­ted farm­yard ma­nure over a wide area around the plant­ing hole – this will en­cour­age the roots to ex­plore out­wards into the sur­round­ing soil. If space is lim­ited, you can still en­joy the crisp, juicy fresh­ness of just-picked ap­ples by grow­ing trees in pots. Be­cause the roots de­ter­mine the size of the tree, choose a tree that has been grafted onto a con­tainer root­stock. Ap­ples on dwarf­ing M26 root­stocks stay about 2m tall if grown in a large pot (about 50cm di­am­e­ter). Wa­ter the tree care­fully and feed reg­u­larly with liq­uid sea­weed through­out the grow­ing sea­son.

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