If you’re looking for a smaller, under 25 feet (8 m.), tree that is an interesting garden specimen through each season, look no further than an ‘Adams’ crabapple. Beautiful the tree may be, but there is another important reason for growing an Adams crabapple; it is a great choice for pollinating other varieties of apple. Interested in using Adams crabapple as a pollinizer? Read on to find out how to grow an Adams crabapple and information about Adams crabapple care.
Adams Crabapple as a Pollinizer
What makes Adams crabapples ideal for pollinating other types of apples? Crabapple trees belong to the Rose family but they share the same genus, Malus, as apples. While there is some minor dissention on the point, the difference is arbitrary. In the case of apples vs. crabapples, fruit size is really the only thing that separates them.
So, in other words, a Malus tree with fruit that is two inches (5 cm.) or greater across is considered to be an apple and a Malus tree with fruit that is less than two inches (5 cm.) across is termed a crabapple.
Because of their close relation, crabapple trees make excellent choices for cross pollinating apples. This crabapple is a mid- to late season bloomer and can be used pollinate the following apples:
Trees should be planted within 50 feet (15 m.) of each other.
How to Grow an Adams Crabapple
Adams crabapples have a smaller dense, rounded habit that blooms with masses of burgundy blossoms in the early to mid-spring prior to leafing out. The blossoms give way to small, brilliantly red fruit that remains on the tree throughout the winter. In the fall, the foliage turns a golden yellow.
Growing an Adams crabapple is low maintenance, as the tree is cold hardy and disease resistant. Adams crabapples can be grown in USDA zones 4-8. Trees should be grown in full sun and moist, well-draining, mildly acidic soil.
Adams crabapples are low maintenance, easy-to-care for trees. Other types of crabapple tend to drop their fruit in the fall which then has to be raked up, but these crabapples stay on the tree throughout the winter, attracting birds and small mammals, minimizing your Adams crabapple care.