AppleCrab Trees For Deer
Applecrabs are the hybrid between an apple and crabapple. This combination often makes a hardier cross and is typically well suited for colder climates, and the fruit size usually is around 2 inches. When the best of both worlds come together, you get a larger fruit than a crabapple yet produces as heavily as a crabapple. The taste can be every bit as good or even better than most modern apples sold in today’s commercial world. These combinations with good disease resistance make for what most people would consider the best apples to plant for wildlife, especially the Whitetail deer. Most would look at an apple crab and think, well, that’s an apple, and while they very well might be right to an extent, the tree’s ability to produce such an abundant crop of fruit is what sets it apart above planting a regular apple tree for deer.
These trees are unique cultivars. Trees are specially selected for their characteristics and then propagated from new vegetative growth taken from the original tree (essentially giving you a clone of the original tree). In this case, we select characteristics that produce traits that we find most beneficial for feeding and attracting the Whitetail deer.
We all want characteristics such as consistent and abundant fruit production, drop lengths, and specific drop times. Durations that correspond with our habitat management needs, sweet and palatable fruit, and a tree with enough built-in disease and insect resistance regularly produce large fruit crops without the chemical spraying required for most standard apple trees.
Blue Hill Wildlife Nursery strives to provide you, the best tree possible.
Price per tree
$18.00 - $29.00
2-3′ ( 3/8″ dia.) These trees will have a good root system. They will be whips around 3′ high with a trunk diameter of 3/8″.
3-5′ ( 1/2” dia.) These trees will have a good root system with some possible branching but will mainly be whips. They will range in height between 3′ to 5′ with around a 1/2″ trunk diameter.
4-6′ (+ 1/2” dia.) These trees will have an extensive root system and typically have multiple branches, but many will be solid whips. They will range in height between 4′ and 6′ with a 1/2″ to 3/4″ trunk diameter.
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Plant at least two different apple, apple crabs, or crabapple cultivars within proximity to each other for pollination. All white flowering crabapple cultivars or varieties will give your apple crab tree good pollination. Grams Gift, Golden Hornet, Chestnut Crab, are excellent pollinators for apple trees, but all the crabapples we sell are white flowering. Plant all apples, apple crab, and crabapples in moist, well-drained soil with a soil pH between 5.8 – 7 with adequate nutrient levels for optimal growth.
If you have not completed a soil test, click here and improve your soil. I would highly recommend doing so. However, if you are not going to, I would recommend mixing 1 ounce for every three sq ft of 0-20-20 granular fertilizer in your soil at the time of planting. The first number tells you the percentage of nitrogen contained in the fertilizer. Nitrogen applied directly to the tree’s roots will cause death to your tree. Make sure the first number is zero or slow-release like osmocote.
Nitrogen is very mobile in the soil, and You can apply a small amount of nitrogen the following year as needed. The 2nd and 3rd numbers are Phosphorus and Potassium. Apply these two nutrients at or well before planting because they are immobile in the soil. Mix them through the soil. We recommend completing a soil test and making amendments for best results.
Applecrab trees require a minimum of 6 hours of sunlight for growth and fruit production. Space trees 20′ apart and use at least 5′ cages to protect your trees. This protection will ensure your deer eat your fruit in a few years and not your trees this year.