In the boundless territories of Russia and Ukraine, wild birds can be seen everywhere, but most of all they are found in the forest, among thickets, near rivers, on the slopes of ravines.
Wild apple tree prefers to grow as a bush or a small tree. Probably, every person has a memory of childhood, when, running away from their parents, they enjoyed small, bitter fruits.
Wild apple growing areas
This plant is one of the few lucky ones in the plant world, to which a person turned his attention. The wild apple tree can often be found in our broad-leaved, mixed and coniferous forests. It is especially well acclimatized in northern places. The wild apple tree develops best and gives a bountiful harvest, growing in illuminated areas. The plant “settles” mostly singly in a field or along roads, sometimes in small groups at the edge of forests.
In the forest itself, under the canopy of other trees, where there is a solid shade, the tree feels uncomfortable, which affects growth and productivity. A wild apple tree is used for planting in shelterbelts, in green plantings of settlements as a living protection against harmful "flavors" of roads. Hercan be found in nurseries.
A large distribution of wildfowl is observed on the territory of the European part of Russia, in Ukraine and Belarus. In summer cottages and near individual houses, it is planted quite rarely, since the plots are small, and the owners are in no hurry to spend precious space on such a tree.
Wild apple tree description
Wild apple tree, oxalis, wild apple, forest apple tree is a tree whose height is from three to five meters, sometimes reaches 10 meters, thickness - 40 centimeters. The crown is dense, mostly rounded, the bark is brown in color, grayish on old trees, with cracks. Young shoots are herbaceous, dark brown in color, some have thorns. The leaves of the wild apple tree are slightly covered with hairs, elliptical in shape, sometimes they are rounded with teeth on the edges. When mature, they are dark green, sometimes bright green above and matte below.
Blooms in late April - early May. The appearance of the apple tree at this time is irresistible! The tree is covered with rather large white or pink flowers, which are collected in several pieces in inflorescences - corymbs. Simultaneously with flowering, the leaves of the wild apple tree begin to bloom. Cross pollination.
Fruits of the forest apple tree
The tree begins to bear fruit at the age of ten. The yield of the game is simply incredible, but the problem is that the fruits of the forest apple tree are bitter-sour and woody. When fresh, they become edible only a month after harvest. The seeds contain a slightly poisonous substance - amygdalin.
The fruits are small,varied form. Their color is mainly green-yellow, sometimes red and whitish-yellow with a pink blush. These little apples have been scientifically proven to be superior to other cultivars in their he alth benefits. The reason for this is the beneficial substances that they contain:
• Organic acids (1.9%): malic, tartaric, citric and others.
• Approximately 30 types of minerals, including iron, calcium, potassium and zinc.
• Carotene and vitamins "B", "C", "PP".
• Up to 16% of various types of sugar (glucose, sucrose and fructose).• Phytoncides and essential oil.
These indicators are influenced by the age and variety of the tree. The chemical composition of the fruit depends on the place and climatic conditions in which the wild apple tree grows, as well as on the size of the fruit. The smaller the apple, the more vitamin C it will contain. The leaves of the apple tree contain much more of it. The peel of the fruit contains flavonoids.
Collecting and storing fruits
The timing of picking apples depends on the timing of ripening and continues from the end of summer until late autumn. Harvesting of fruits should be carried out, taking into account all qualitative signs. Apples must be fully ripe, only then they have rich nutrients and a normal taste, as well as the greatest capacity of vitamins.
In order to achieve high productivity during the harvest, you will need a high organization, as well as the technique of carrying out this work. Since apples are further used for technical processing, the simplest method is used to collect them -the fruit-bearing apple tree is shaken, and the fruits are on the ground. However, with this method, large losses are noted, and the apples receive mechanical damage.
Greater performance will be noted only when a stretched panel is placed under the tree. Falling on it, the fruits are less damaged, they are not clogged to the same extent, and, most importantly, you do not have to spend a lot of time searching for and picking up fallen fruits. If the apples are to be eaten fresh, they must be picked by hand.
You need to collect wild apples in solid containers, that is, in boxes. In them, they will be in special rooms until they are sent to their destinations. Collected wild-growing raw materials must be sorted by quality and size, it must not have foreign objects and damaged fruits.
In order to preserve the fruits of the forest apple tree for a long time, they must be placed in a room with a temperature of 0 degrees or stored in the forest under a thick layer of foliage. The later the fruits ripen, the longer their shelf life, which ranges from two to five months.
Growing apple trees from seeds
Probably, every person had such a case in his life when, out of curiosity, he buried an apple seed in the ground with the hope of growing a real tree. But this spontaneous desire could not succeed. In order to have a good view of the apple tree and tasty apples, you need to make a lot of work, as well as have the necessary knowledge. tree grown fromseeds of a wild apple tree will be very frost-resistant, it can withstand even forty-degree frosts and at the same time bear fruit every year.
Before planting an apple tree, young seedlings are grown from ordinary seeds. Usually this work is carried out in nurseries, but you can, using the tips of specialists, get seedlings on your own at home. First you need to choose high-quality seed material. It is better to take ripened fruits in that part of the crown where they receive sufficient lighting and are well supplied with nutrients, this is the extreme branch of the apple tree. Good germination is observed in seeds collected from ripened fruits in early autumn.
Preparing seeds for germination
In order for the seeds to sprout in the spring, they need to be stratified. But first, the collected seeds should be thoroughly washed, dried, then placed in warm water, changing it every day. For best effect, add a growth stimulant.
After swelling, place the seed in a container with a mixture of wet sawdust and moss or wet sand and sawdust. To prevent mold, it is desirable to add active carbon. Then the container must be sent to the cellar or refrigerator for two to three months.
When it is not possible to create the necessary conditions for growing seeds, you can plant them directly in the ground. In this case, all necessary landing rules must be observed. For wintering, young seedlings are transferred in the autumn in an appropriate container to a greenhouse. Withwith the onset of warm spring days, this tiny wild apple tree moves to its permanent place of growth. In order to have a high chance of germination, it is recommended to place several pieces of seeds in one planting nest.
Plant for planting
Knowing how to grow a plant from a seed is not enough. In order for a tree (an apple tree in our case) to be able to develop and bear fruit properly in the future, you will have to correctly decide when choosing a site for planting. You should pay attention to the characteristics of the fruit crop.
Open area is not suitable for planting apple trees. They are also stunted and produce poor fruit yields planted near forests and at the foot of slopes. The best place is considered to be a sunny area protected from the winds. If you pay due attention and carry out proper care, a forest apple tree grown by sowing seeds will give positive results. A competent approach to such a procedure makes it possible to obtain strong material for varietal grafting.
Grafting wild apple tree
Very often, gardeners are faced with the case when a seedling bought on the market after a long five years does not give the long-awaited results. The fruits are completely different. Sometimes you want to keep your favorite variety in your garden, without even knowing its name, using a wild apple tree, but the question arises whether it is possible to plant a wild apple tree. There is one way out of this situation - to learn how to graft a cultivar to a wild stock with your own hands.
This kind of work is very exciting and interesting. On one trunk you can doseveral grafts from different varieties. In this case, each branch of the apple tree will bear fruit with different varieties of beautiful and tasty fruits. Feeling like a breeder is not enough, you need to learn the technique of grafting cultivars on a wild game seedling grown by yourself.
During grafting, a part of one plant is transferred to another, for their further fusion. The part that is intended for grafting is called the scion, the plant that is grafted on is called the rootstock. There are different ways to graft trees. The wild apple tree is often grafted from a cutting. In the spring, this technique is best performed at the beginning of the juice movement, when the first leaves begin to appear on the tree.
Preparing the scion
Young shoots of the current year serve as graft. When choosing them, you need to pay attention to the fact that they are strong enough and well developed. Harvesting cuttings is carried out in the fall after the first frost to give them the opportunity to harden. Branches are taken from the south side of the tree and cut into pieces 20–30 cm long.
For storage, cuttings should be placed in a refrigerator or in an unheated room. The ideal storage method is to bury them in the snow, but this is only acceptable in snowy winters. The cut branches are placed in a plastic bag, the ends are not tied, then wrapped in thick paper and a metal mesh to keep them from rodents. If refrigerated, cuttings can be wrapped in a damp cloth and placed in a plastic bag.
You won't need cuttings for summer grafting. Everything can be prepared on the spot, and howthe faster you do it, the better the work will be. For the cutting, an annual branch is selected with the presence of good buds and from the desired apple tree. All leaves are removed from it, then everything is done according to the grafting technique in the chosen way.
All about diseases and various troubles of apple trees
Not a single gardener is immune from the fact that some kind of trouble may happen on his site. Good care is not a complete guarantee that the garden will not be attacked by pests, trees will bypass diseases, and weeds will be completely destroyed. Of course, experienced gardeners, while properly caring for plants, encounter such problems infrequently and know how, if necessary, to quickly protect their favorite trees. In life, people who have no experience, if they have a garden, have to face many problems from time to time.
Productivity and decorativeness of trees is greatly reduced due to diseases. The wild apple tree is also susceptible to some diseases. The plant is affected by living organisms that are transmitted from plant to plant. But the most common cause of diseases are fungi. There are diseases of leaves, flowers, shoots and fruits caused by bacteria and viruses, against which there are no effective chemical agents in our country yet.
The most common diseases of apple trees: powdery mildew, brown spot, rust, scab and others. As a result of such diseases, the apple tree prematurely loses foliage, weakens. Flowering becomes less abundant, resulting in lower yields. The trunk, branches and roots of the plant suffer fromfollowing diseases: black cancer, cytospore necrosis, root and stem rot.
Troubles for apple trees are severe frosts, drought, nutrient-poor soil. All this adversely affects the viability of plants. In this case, they begin to get sick, but such diseases are not contagious.
More than 200 species of harmful insects develop on apple trees, such as flies, butterflies, beetles, and herbivorous mites. They feed on various parts of the tree: buds, buds, foliage, fruits and, very unpleasantly, trunks. Pests often include microscopic animals such as nematodes and larger animals such as squirrels and birds.
Pests are divided into the following groups: leaf-eating insects, suckers, gall formers, miners, xylophages or stem and fruit pests. The most common apple fruit pests are the codling moth and the apple sawfly. The codling moth gives three generations per season. Its caterpillars are capable of harming all the fruits of the apple tree. In winter, the forest apple tree can hide the codling moth under its bark.
Protection of apple trees from pests
You need to protect trees from pests on time, and if the garden is in the private sector, try to use pesticides only in emergency cases. Herbal preparations have an effective effect against sucking pests. For example, against aphids, decoctions of the leaves and flowers of grassy or black elderberry, Caucasian chamomile, medicinal orDalmatian.
One of the prerequisites for the normal development of a plant is to increase resistance to such adverse environmental factors as climatic conditions and pests. To achieve this, you need to fertilize on time, carry out annual pruning of the crown, and destroy weeds. Such a complex of agrotechnical measures will enhance the circulation of juice through the conducting system. It will completely fill the passages laid by stem pests. In this regard, the death of the larvae will occur.
If you have to treat trees with chemicals, it is very important to follow all precautions, strictly following the instructions for using the poison. Be sure to meet the deadlines after which you can eat fruits, which will help maintain human he alth. The first application of pesticides in the garden should be carried out before the start of sap flow.
Unfortunately, spraying with poisons will not save the garden from the invasion of pests. The fight against them begins already during the acquisition of a seedling, and ends with a competent cleaning of the site at the end of autumn. You need to try to choose he althy planting material so as not to bring pests and diseases into the garden that are better to prevent. But when they appear, you should act decisively and very quickly. Only then will a wild apple tree planted on the street or in the garden make the air much cleaner and cooler. The people around you will feel much he althier.