Apple Tree Planting Guide: Growing An Apple Tree In Your Yard

Dark Red Apples on Apple Tree Branch
apples on tree
(Image credit: oersin)

Most apple tree planting guides will tell you that apple trees can take a long time to fruit. This will depend, of course, on the variety of apple tree you purchase. Some will produce fruit earlier than others.

Soil for Growing an Apple Tree

One thing to remember about growing an apple tree is that the pH of the soil has to be just what the tree needs. You should have a soil test done if you are thinking about how to grow an apple orchard or your trees might not survive.

Having a soil test done by the extension office is great because they provide the kit, do the test and then can give you a report of exactly what your soil needs in order to have the proper pH. Adding whatever is needed should be done to the depth of 12 to 18 inches (30-46 cm.) so that the roots get the proper pH, or they can burn.

How Do You Plant Apple Trees?

Most apple tree planting guides will tell you that higher ground is better for growing an apple tree. This is because low lying frost can kill the blossoms on the tree in the spring. Growing an apple tree on higher ground protects the blossoms from an early death, thus ensuring a good crop of apples.

Apple tree growing info also advises not to plant the trees near the woods or streams. Both of these environments can ruin the tree. Growing an apple tree requires full sunshine. You will know when to grow apple trees when you can actually dig the hole necessary to plant the tree. Obviously, springtime is best, but make sure the ground is good and thawed.

When planting apple trees, pay attention to how the root ball goes into the ground. Growing an apple tree will require that you dig your hole double the diameter of the root ball and at least two feet deep.

When you cover the roots with soil, you tamp it down as you go so you can ensure that the roots are completely touching the dirt. This makes certain your tree is going to get all the nutrients necessary from the soil because the air pockets were removed.

Apple Tree Care

When caring for an apple tree, you can add fertilizer, but don't fertilize at planting time because you can burn the roots. Wait until the plant has established itself and then feed it according to the instructions on the fertilizer package. Most of the time, if your soil has the proper pH, you won't need to fertilize your apple trees.

Kathee Mierzejewski

Kathee Mierzejewski was with Gardening Know How in the very beginning, writing many of the site's foundational articles.