Apricot — planting and care 120 photos of the tree. Pruning and grafting instructions
Sweet and fragrant, juicy and velvety, filled with the sun, orange delicacy – all these are associations to such a wonderful fruit – apricot. Incredibly healthy and delicious, this oriental guest can please not only with its fruits, but also with its appearance. Growing apricots is not just a grateful thing, but super-grateful, however, there are nuances.
Each of us probably has some experience related to this plant, but to complete the picture, we need to consider in more detail where and under what conditions the apricot grows, how to grow it and what care it requires.
We have all seen an apricot tree at least once in our lives. This plant is of medium height (up to 8 meters) with dark, gray-brown bark and a spreading crown. Apricot leaves are green, rounded with denticles, smooth. The tree looks much more interesting during the flowering period (March, April): bare branches without leaves are strewn with small white or pink-tinged flowers.
The fruits have a rounded shape, velvety skin. Depending on the variety, the color can vary from yellow to orange-red. That is why the emphasis on apricot photos is on fruits and flowering trees.
With good care and satisfactory conditions, the apricot lives up to 100 years. Young trees begin to bear fruit from the age of 4 and gradually stop yielding by about 40 years.
The birthplace of apricot is considered to be China. Currently, this garden culture has become widespread all over the world.
The tree prefers a warm temperate climate, so it is cultivated in Abkhazia, Kyrgyzstan, the Caucasus, in the southern regions of the European part of Russia, Turkey, Iran, Italy, Ukraine, Greece and other countries with suitable conditions.
Despite the "capriciousness" of apricot relative to weather conditions, the culture is successfully grown in the central part of Russia. With sufficient care, the right choice of planting site, timely pruning and fertilizing, you can get a very good harvest of this sunny fruit.
How to plant an apricot
Experienced gardeners recommend planting apricots in early spring, when the juice movement has not yet begun. If the seedling already has leaves, then it is likely that it will be ill for a long time, or it will not take root at all.
Planting apricots in autumn may also not bring results. However, there are successful cases, especially if you try to plant a seedling in September, cutting the branches by one-third, and the leaves in half. These simple procedures will reduce the evaporation of moisture from the tree, thereby preserving it.
A flat place for planting is not suitable, you need to find or make yourself a plot with a slight slope. In the case of clay soil, sand and small stones must be poured onto the bottom of the pit. Acidic areas require lime application.
A sandy loam soil with a neutral or slightly alkaline reaction would be ideal. It is worth remembering that the apricot tree does not tolerate waterlogging.
Planting pits should be carefully prepared. Each of them is a square with sides of 80 cm, with a similar depth. Drainage of stones or broken bricks is arranged at the bottom.
In order for apricot seedlings to take root well, you will need a lot of fertilizer: humus (about 40 kg), superphosphate (600 g), potassium sulfate (300 g) or a couple of kilograms of ash. The placement of the seedling in the pit should be calculated in such a way that the root neck after sprinkling is no deeper than 5 cm from the surface.
Care and breeding
Apricot care involves regular watering, loosening the soil around the tree, weeding and fertilizing. Young plants need to get about five waterings of 25-30 liters per tree per season.
To avoid rapid evaporation of moisture after watering in hot weather, it is worth stocking up with a sufficient amount of mulch, which is poured around the apricot.
In autumn, with shallow digging, it is necessary to make potash and phosphorus fertilizers. In spring, even before the apricot blooms, nitrogen fertilizers and superphosphate are introduced. Do not forget to whitewash trees to avoid burns.
The flowering of the sunny fruit is early, so the gardener necessarily faces the question of how to cover the apricot. With spring frosts, a two-layer shelter made of agrila is excellent to cope with.
At the same time, the shelter should be formed so that bees can freely fly under it and pollinate. To attract their attention, gardeners recommend spraying the tree with water and honey.
A cold and rainy summer brings with it the risks of apricot disease with perforated spotting and fruit rot. As soon as signs of the disease are noticed, all trees and their foliage should be urgently treated with any of the following drugs: topsin-M, topaz, copper chloride. Intavir will help in the fight against fruitworm and aphids.
Preventive measures may include the following works: installation of a ventilated fence around the perimeter of the garden, collection of dried leaves and fruits, removal of diseased branches, mulching and proper pruning of the tree, which should be discussed in more detail.
Pruning a tree
As for all fruit trees, there is a standard for pruning apricots. The crown of all trees should be no more than 4 m in height and width. Branches whose angle of inclination in relation to the trunk is less than 50 degrees are cut out at the base, just above the annular influx (the method is called "on the ring").
In the same way, all intertwining, inward-looking, closely spaced branches are cut out. A good result can be said when the sun illuminates literally every leaf of the apricot tree. Circumcision is performed in spring, summer and autumn.
Is it possible to grow an apricot in an apartment
The conditions of the apartment will not allow you to grow an apricot tree with a plentiful harvest. As a rule, a barren wildling grows out of a seed planted in a pot. In addition, homemade apricots rarely gain color. However, for decorative purposes, this option will be very good.
Wild game is grafted and planted in a permanent place, then the harvest is good. It is better to plant several seeds at once, because not all of them will be able to germinate, and the seedlings will differ in strength and growth.
What to cook from fruits and their useful properties
Apricots are one of the favorite treats of children. The fruit helps to support the immune system, is rich in vitamins and useful elements, including potassium, magnesium and iron.
Dried apricot fruits, namely apricots and dried apricots, can be stored for a long time without losing their useful properties. Being a delicious and high-calorie food, apricot dried fruits will please you in the cold winter and save you from vitamin deficiency. Pies, compote, jam – all this can be made from apricots, delighting yourself and guests.