Louisa crabapple trees (Malus “Louisa”) make excellent choices for a variety of gardens. Even as far as zone 4, you can enjoy this pretty weeping ornamental and watch lovely, soft pink flowers bloom every spring.
Ornamental trees have an important place in the garden. While they may not offer much shade or any edible fruit, they do provide visual interest, early spring color, and an anchor for a bed or a certain part of the garden. Crabapples are popular as ornamentals because they are easy to grow, provide pretty flowers, and are small and well-suited to urban and suburban yards.
Among the flowering and ornamental crabapples, the “Louisa” is wonderful choice. It is a weeping variety, which means the branches droop downward, adding a new and interesting form to a garden. Like all crabapples, growing Louisa crabapples is pretty straightforward. They tolerate a range of soil types as long as the soil drains, they like full sun, and they are relatively low maintenance.
A Louisa crabapple tree will grow to only about 12 or 15 feet (3.6 to 4.5 meters) in height, so it remains small and compact. It produces showy, pale pink flowers in the spring and beautiful yellow-red fruit in the fall. The branches cascade toward the ground, producing a deep umbrella form.
Weeping crabapple care begins with find the right spot for your tree that will provide the best conditions. The Louisa prefers full sun, a medium amount of water, and soil that drains well. Look for a spot that is sunny, but don’t worry about the soil type. This tree tolerates all kinds of soil and will even tolerate drought. Just don’t let its roots get soggy.
Louisa crabapples are pretty low maintenance once you get them established, but pruning in late winter may be necessary to keep the shape. Without pruning, the branches can drape all the way to the ground and more. You only really need to prune if you want to shape your tree or limit the length of the weeping branches.
Like other crabapples, the Louisa trees are susceptible to some diseases. Watch for early signs of leaf spot, powdery mildew, scab, and fire blight. Louisa is more resistant to diseases than some other varieties. To further limit the possibility of your tree developing a disease, avoid using high-nitrogen fertilizers.
Growing Louisa crabapples is not difficult and the rewards are great. You get a pretty, weeping tree with pink flowers in spring and fall color and fruit in the autumn. As an ornamental, you can’t go wrong with Louisa.