Sunday, 13 March 2011

crab apple

Sometimes considered to be a native, the crab apple (malus sylvestris) is a lovely addition to deciduous woodland. It has attractive blossom and yields pretty 'mini-apples' in the autumn that can be enjoyed by wildlife or used for jams or cider. They are unusually high in pectin and so a few are often added to low-pectin fruits such as strawberries during jam making.

Some varieties of crab are 'universal pollinators' for apples.

There is a range of cultivars, but we have chosen one whose seed was collected locally from pips collected from Brierley Country Park. It has been grown on to this two year 'feathered whip' size. It is not a cultivar and so has not been grafted onto a root stock.

With luck, it will go on to be a small tree of around 3 metres tall.

It is the first tree planted on site by us and I am filled with excitement about the prospect of it being joined by many more trees as we develop the site over the coming years.

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