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apple trees

2016/8/3 11:08:01

Question
I have just moved to central florida between Tampa and Orlando. The soil is mostly sand. Is it possible to grow an apple tree?

Answer
Hello Lori,

I'm not very knowledgeable about fruit trees but I'll give your question a try, hope this helps you. Actually, the best source for information about what type of apple grows best in your area would be a local garden center or nursery.

You've moved into a fairly warm weather area which limits the types of apple trees you can plant and be successful in getting them bear fruit. I checked one of my garden books and here are some kinds of apple trees you might be able to grow there in central Florida. The variety of apple will be listed first then a brief description of fruit quality.

'Anna' - early ripening, fruit is pale green with a red blush, crisp with a sweet flavor, does not require a winter chill to set fruit, best fruiting when planted near a 'Dorsett Golden'.

'Dorsett Golden' - early ripening, fruit is golden color, sweet flavor, good for cooking, no winter chill, good pollinator for 'Anna'.

I'm afraid that's it as most other types of apples require a winter chill to set fruit. But, with that said, here are a couple more that would be marginal and may not set fruit on a regular basis.

'Fuji' - late ripening, yellow-green with red stripes, very sweet, stores well, requires a minimum of 160 days of warm weather for fruit to ripen properly.

'Granny Smith' - midseason ripening, yellow-green fruit, firm but tart flesh, good cooking apple, good in mild winter areas.

'Jonagold' - midseason ripening, red stripes over yellow fruit, good flavor but slightly tart.

'Winter Banana' - midseason ripening, pale yellow with pink blush fruit, aromatic fruit.

I hope you find one or more of the above apple trees appealing and that you have success in growing it.

Good luck,

Jim Kawasaki
San Jose, Ca.

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