Previously, apricot was considered an exclusively southern plant, today this fruit crop is grown even in the Urals and Siberia. Planting and caring for an apricot causes some difficulties for novice gardeners. In our article, you will learn how to plant and grow an apricot.
The timing of planting an apricot seedling depends on the climatic zone. In the suburbs and regions of central Russia, seedlings planted in open ground at the end of April are successfully taking root. Gardeners of the Volga region recommend planting seedlings of this fruit crop in late March or early April. For planting, take northern, winter-hardy varieties. In the Urals and Siberia, frost-resistant varieties of apricot are planted. Planting date - late April or early May. To protect against late spring frosts, young trees are covered with non-woven material.
It is necessary to plant fruit trees in the spring - before the start of active sap flow and swelling of the buds. Otherwise, the plant loses a lot of energy for adaptation and recovery.
In this video, you will learn how to properly prepare a planting hole for a tree and plant a seedling.
When choosing planting material, carefully inspect the seedling for damage to the bark and signs of decay. One- and two-year crops take root faster.
The optimum height of a young tree suitable for planting is 1–1.5 m. Low-growing crops are considered the result of improper cultivation, tall ones - an excessive amount of nitrogen-containing fertilizing in the soil.
A healthy seedling has one main root and 2-3 lateral roots. The lateral ramifications should be evenly spaced along the tree trunk. An apricot with branches with sharp angles of discharge is considered unsuitable for planting. With abundant fruiting, such branches can break off, which is fraught with the death of the fruit tree.
Apricot feels comfortable in black earth or loamy soil with neutral acidity. Saplings planted in peat or sandy soil slowly take root and bear poor fruit.
Apricot is a light-loving and thermophilic fruit tree. When choosing a place for planting a seedling, it is recommended to take a closer look at the areas of the garden open to the sun. In this case, the area must be protected from drafts and wind. The groundwater level is 2.5–3 m. The proximity of groundwater negatively affects the development of the root system of the tree and its yield.
According to experienced gardeners, apricot is considered an individual fruit crop. The plant does not tolerate being close to cherries, cherries, pears, peaches, apple trees and walnuts. As it grows, the apricot tree forms a wide and spreading crown. For this reason, when planting seedlings of fruit trees, it is recommended to maintain a distance of 3-4 m between the planting pits.
The apricot planting pit should be at least 70–80 cm deep and 65 cm wide. Drainage from broken bricks, gravel or rubble is laid out at the bottom of the pit. The height of the drainage layer is 5–7 cm.
You need to prepare the landing pit well in advance. If you are going to plant an apricot seedling in the spring, then the pit is being prepared in the fall. The soil will have time to be well saturated with air and moisture.
Upon completion of the preparatory work, you can start planting the seedling. You need to plant an apricot tree as follows:
Now let's figure out how to plant an apricot in the fall.
Autumn planting is no different from spring planting. The planting pit is prepared 3-4 weeks before planting the seedling in open ground. When making a chatterbox from clay and manure, keep an eye on the consistency of the mixture.
So that the apricot planted in autumn does not freeze at the first frost, the clay talker must be very thick. After drying, a layer of clay and manure of at least 3 cm remains on the roots.
At first, caring for an apricot planted in open ground consists in timely moistening the soil. At the same time, overflow and drying out of the soil is not allowed. It is necessary to determine the frequency and amount of watering according to the degree of soil drying.
When signs of insect pests appear, the fruit tree is treated with insecticidal preparations or time-tested folk remedies are used.
Apricot is a fast growing fruit crop. With proper care, the first time it gives an active increase - 1 m per year. In spring and autumn, crown pruning is carried out.
The first year after planting a seedling in a permanent place of growth, no fertilization is needed. The tree absorbs micronutrients that are in the soil.
Novice gardeners are interested in whether it is possible to grow an apricot from a stone. When propagating a fruit crop by seeds, it is necessary to take into account the varietal characteristics of the plant. So, for central Russia and the Moscow region, the following apricot varieties are suitable: Honey, Edelweiss, Saratov Ruby, Russian, Alyosha, Hurricane, Tsarsky, Northern Triumph, Samara, Vystaly, Aquarius, etc.
The collected seeds are thoroughly washed and filled with water for 24 hours. The bones that float to the surface of the water are thrown away, the rest are planted in the ground. In this case, the depth of the hole is 6–7 cm. The beds are preliminarily watered abundantly. After planting, the holes with seeds must be mulched with humus or compost.
You can plant apricot seeds in spring, summer or autumn. The deadline for planting in autumn is mid-October.
Experienced gardeners recommend focusing on the weather conditions and climatic features of the region where the culture is growing.
Care for young seedlings consists in watering, fertilizing, weeding and loosening the soil.
Thanks to the work of breeders, apricot appeared in gardens not only in the southern regions of the country. With proper care, this culture is considered a long-liver, but the main condition for the full growth and development of the tree is the correct planting of the seedling in a permanent place, taking into account all the characteristics and needs of the culture.
About when and how to properly plant an apricot seedling in the spring in open ground - read further in our article.
Dark purple apricots have recently been grown in garden plots. The advantages of a hybrid species are that they tolerate winters more easily and can grow in conditions of central Russia.
The fruits of the Black Prince are quite large - weighing up to 80 g. After ripening, they become maroon or almost brown.
The flesh of the Black Prince is juicy, bright red-golden color. The apricots taste sweet with a slight sourness and astringency. It combines the flavors of apricot, peach and plum.
The aroma feels familiar apricot. The bone cannot be separated from the pulp.
After ripening, the fruits may crumble, so the Black Prince is picked slightly unripe.
But keep in mind that early plucked apricots do not ripen.
All nutrients, sugars and vitamins come through the stalk, plus they need sun. Without this, the plucked apricots will not ripen, although they may become softer.
You need to pick ripe fruits, but they have not yet begun to become soft on the branch, otherwise they will rot. You can determine the ripeness of an apricot on a tree by its softness. Ripe fruits become dark in color and slightly less firm than green ones.
During this period, it is important to quickly collect them, otherwise they will quickly go limp and fall off.
You can pick apricots from the tree from the end of July; in warm regions, the period lasts until the end of August.
The yield of the variety is above average. Apricot begins to bear fruit in 3-4 years of growth. On average, an apricot tree lives up to 100 years, but active fruiting lasts up to 20-30 years.
Many summer residents who planted the Black Prince and harvested the first harvest were satisfied with the varietal characteristics of the apricot. But before choosing a crop for your garden, you need to know about all the pros and cons of the variety.
The flowers on the apricot resemble snow.
But it is worth taking into account a number of disadvantages:
The variety is considered self-pollinated, although opinions are divided among gardeners. Some believe that the Black Prince apricot is self-fertile, and pollinators are needed to produce a single tree. But on a regular plot there are always other fruit trees that can become pollinators. It can be plums, apple trees, peaches, cherry plums and others. All of them are suitable for hybrid pollination.
Apricot variety Son of the red-cheeked is also suitable for pollination
We recommend turning your attention to one more hybrid, but now a hybrid of apricot, plum and prsik - Sharafugu.
The variety was specially bred as winter hardy. But it is recommended to mulch the trunk circle so that the roots do not freeze. The root system is quite close to the surface and can be injured in severe frosts.
The principles of growing the Black Prince practically do not differ from the cultivation of other varieties of apricots. This is an unpretentious plant, but for the longevity of the tree and high yields, there are several simple recommendations and tips for growing.
It is better to plant apricots in spring before the beginning of swelling and bud formation. In the fall, the plant will not have time to take root and adapt. Plant in cloudy and rainy weather can be an exception. With spring planting, the survival rate of seedlings is almost 100%.
If the seedling already has leaves and branches at the time of planting, shorten them by ⅓. This will delay the evaporation of moisture, it will be easier for the plant to adapt and take root.
Growing results depend on the quality of the selected planting material. Saplings should be without buds, leaves. If they have already appeared, delete them or trim them to ⅓. Examine the plant for diseases and pests.
It is worth buying seedlings only in proven nurseries or in gardening stores. If you buy from your hands, then there is a high probability of purchasing an infected plant or the wrong variety.
This is a sun-loving plant. Plant the Black Prince in a well-lit part of the garden, but not in the sun itself. The place must be protected from drafts. The variety is undemanding to the quality of the land, but the soil should not be swampy, low or too moist. Choose a location that is far from groundwater.
One plant requires an area of 5 sq. m. Therefore, if you plant apricots nearby, keep a distance of 3-4 m around.
When planting, dig a hole 80x80 cm in size, up to 1 m deep.Pour humus or rotted manure, drainage from broken bricks, pebbles or expanded clay on the bottom. Place a peg in the middle to secure the seedling. The excavated earth is mixed with ash or peat and covered in half of the pit.
Prepare the hole in the fall, leave until spring to settle.
Plant the plant in the spring when the weather is constantly warm and the threat of repeated frost has passed.
Dip the apricot roots in the growth-stimulating ash and spread them on the surface of the ground in the hole. The root collar should be 5 cm higher than the soil level. How to find out where the root collar is, read here.
After planting, cover with earth, tie and water.
Caring for the variety is simple. A few tips will help you get a rich and tasty harvest.
Apricot The Black Prince does not like drought, but he also does not tolerate excessive moisture. Water often, but not too much. Water less often during the summer months, depending on the weather. If the weather is too hot, there is little rain, then more watering.
In the fall, it is also worth reducing watering so that the plants can safely prepare for wintering, as watering stimulates additional growth. In this case, the plant will not have time to adapt to winter.
It is important to know about the peculiarity of the variety - the apricot Black Prince does not like nitrogen fertilizers. He generally does not tolerate an excess of dressings. Therefore, fertilizing is worth it sparingly and rarely.
In the spring, you can add a little organic matter, in the summer - mineral, with phosphorus and potassium. Dosages should be kept to a minimum. But in the fall, it is not advisable to apply top dressing, so that the plant is preparing for wintering.
The Black Prince will not have to be circumcised often. The plant has a small crown without thickening. Sanitary pruning of apricot is carried out in spring or autumn. At this time, you can see which branches are infected, damaged, broken, withered or old.
In the spring, diseased, frozen branches are removed, and in the fall, broken, withered ones, so that it is easier for the plant to survive the winter, and they do not take away nutrients.
Perform formative pruning as needed. Cut off branches that grow in the wrong direction, inward, downward, or that are obstructing or weak.
The apricot variety Black Prince tolerates frost well, but before winter it is recommended to mulch the ground around with peat, a non-woven material. The root system can freeze out in severe frosts. Also whitewash the trunk to protect the plant from hares.
The plant is resistant to some diseases, but additional preventive measures should be taken. To do this, remove fallen leaves and fruits, branches. Clean the near-stem area in spring and autumn, as fungi and pest larvae hibernate in old leaves.
It is recommended to dig up the ground around, and in the spring, even before the tree awakens, mulch with a non-woven material or film so that the larvae and insects hibernating in the soil do not move to the tree.
At the first sign of infestation or pest infestation, treat with fungicides and insecticides.
The disease is common in stone fruits. The Black Prince variety is resistant to disease, but in cool and humid weather, spores become active and infect the plant with a weakened immune system.
Fungi develop on all parts of the tree: leaves, shoots, buds and flowers, even branches. The affected areas are covered with spots, then they darken and become covered with holes. Buds and flowers fall off.
Fungal spores are resistant to various weather conditions, so they live for years. You need to fight the disease with the help of fungicides:
Spray in the spring until the buds form.
The disease develops in a cool and damp climate. It manifests itself in brown spots on the leaves. Flowers dry up and fall off. The trunk and branches begin to crack, and gum is released.
The disease manifests itself during the period of fruit ripening. Disputes spread to fruits that deform and rot right on the branches.
For prevention, treat the plant in the spring before bud formation with the fungicides Horus and Urea, Bordeaux liquid, soapy water, and iron vitriol.
Scab appears as dark spots on fruits and leaves. Apricots decrease in size, flowers also become less frequent, dry up and fall off.
If preventive measures were not taken on time or did not help, then you can fight the disease with the help of fungicides:
Dilute the preparations according to the instructions, spray in the spring before budding or in the fall after harvest.
The variety is also resistant to pest attacks. But with a weakening of immunity and a lack of nutrients, improper care of plants, insects attack apricots. You can fight them by agrotechnical and chemical methods.
Pests feed on the sap of flowers and leaves, fruits. It is one of the most harmful parasites on apricots. In addition to prevention, shaking off beetles from a tree, digging up the soil around and harvesting old fruits and leaves, you can fight with chemicals, for example, Aktellik and other insecticides. You need to apply the funds according to the instructions.
Beetles are very harmful to plants, as their larvae gnaw at the roots, undermining the immunity and vitality of the tree. The pest is especially dangerous for young seedlings. Adults feed on the sap of flowers and leaves.
It is better to fight pests with the following methods:
We recommend reading about the fight against beetle larvae here.
You can understand that the apricot was attacked by aphids by the twisted leaves, cobwebs and withering fruits. With a slight defeat by insects, they fight using folk methods:
If there are a lot of insects, use chemicals such as karbofos, Actellika, Funafon. Other ways to get rid of aphids in the garden can be found in this article.
Apricot Black Prince is becoming more and more popular due to its resistance to frost, disease and pests. The tree is easy to care for.
Alexey, Verkhnyaya Salda
I have been raising the Black Prince for several years now. The variety suits everything, except for poor transportability. They grow only for themselves, not suitable for sale. Apricots do not lie and do not tolerate transportation well.
I saw it at a neighbor's house, I thought it was a plum, but it turned out that it was an apricot. I started it while I like it. Although thorns began to appear, so you have to harvest the crop in a jacket and gloves. I make everything from apricots: mashed potatoes, compote, jam. They are aromatic, sweet with a tart sourness. Guests always praise and wonder what it is.
The tree has good decorative qualities. It blooms beautifully in spring, green in summer with aromatic apricots. The tree is compact, not spreading, and when forming the crown, you can give any shape. A great option for a small garden.
Apricot Black Prince is an interesting variety of apricots. The tree grows small and is great for growing in a small area. The variety is becoming more and more popular due to its excellent taste, resistance to adverse conditions and unpretentiousness.
For cultivation in the suburbs of Moscow, the Leningrad region, the Urals and even Siberia, Canadian and Daurian rhododendrons are considered suitable. Varieties for these regions must tolerate frosts down to minus 25 degrees Celsius. The most popular among them:
Growing apricots in the southern regions, they do not spend much time on leaving. But if you plant plants in Siberia, you will have to take care of the tree a lot. Since northern latitudes are not suitable for growing a plant, you have to always be on the lookout so that the tree does not die.
The frequency of watering an apricot depends on a number of factors, which include:
Young trees need watering more than old ones. The first watering is carried out in April, when the shoots bloom. The second time the apricots are watered when the inflorescences bloom and at the end of this period. The third time is a few weeks before the start of fruit ripening. And the last watering takes place in October. Before watering, the soil is loosened and all weeds are removed.
Another important aspect in the care of apricot trees is the introduction of mineral and organic fertilizing. Apricots are fed in spring, summer and autumn.
In the spring, the plant is fed with nitrogen-containing fertilizers that promote growth. Such fertilizers are applied to the soil next to the trunk. The first time nitrogen is fed during flowering and the second time after flowering. In the last top dressing, along with nitrogen, organic matter is also added. In summer, foliar feeding is preferred. Plants also require nitrogen during the summer. The leaves are sprayed with nitrogen-containing fertilizers.
With the onset of July, feeding should be complex. And in August, preference should be given to organic.
In the fall, top dressing is aimed at preparing for the winter. In the autumn, mineral fertilizers are applied. In order for the apricot to survive the harsh winter, less phosphorus, potassium and calcium are added to the soil. To saturate the soil with potassium and phosphorus, the soil around the trunk is covered with wood ash. To saturate the earth with calcium, chalk or special complex fertilizers are used. It is not recommended to introduce nitrogen-containing fertilizers, as they contribute to the activation of growth.
Like the usual yellow apricot, its black variety needs proper and timely care. That is, you are required to regularly water using a sufficient amount of water, feed the plant and follow the rules for pruning. It is also important to know how the apricot tree is pollinated because partial self-fertility of the Black Velvet variety may require manual pollination.
Apricot varieties "Black Velvet" are prone to the formation of root growth, which requires its regular pruning (excess shoots are cut out near the ground, since they consume a large amount of nutrients, and the yield is almost always very low). As for the branches, when buying a young seedling, they are cut by almost a third, which contributes to the quick establishment of the crown.
It is worth remembering that apricot often grows faster than other trees in the garden, which means that with normal development it will have to be cut more than others, which is especially true for a later age.
With a reduced growth, the branch is cut to older wood (by 2-3 years).
It is important to perform the pruning procedure every year in early spring (before bud break). It is highly undesirable to prune branches in late autumn.
If a full branch is cut, the cut must be carried out at the very base (the so-called "cut per ring"), without leaving any stumps.
In the case when the “Black Velvet” apricot grows too intensively, young strong shoots are pruned at the end of summer (about 10-15 cm are cut off). This helps the branches begin preparing for winter (they thicken).
Below are some of the reviews from gardeners growing the Northern Triumph apricot variety in their garden plots.
With proper care, the Northern Triumph apricot actively blooms and bears fruit, the main thing is to water and feed this stone crop on time. And the harvested fragrant harvest of fruits can be eaten fresh, made compotes for the winter, cooked preserves or jams.