Table of contents:
- 1. Incorrect planting of the apple tree
- 2. The apple tree is too young
- 3. Abundance of nitrogen in the soil
- 4. Affected flower buds
- 5. There is no apple pollinator
- 6. Incorrect pruning or crown shaping
Video: Why Does The Apple Tree Bloom But Not Bear Fruit? Reasons And Solutions. Photo
The apple tree is the most common crop among pome fruit crops. And it seems to be closely familiar to the gardener, and appeared a very long time ago in the practice of agriculture … Many varieties have been bred for different zones, they learned how to propagate and grow the apple tree … But no, it happens that the apple tree blooms with a "violent color", but does not yield at all, or he more than insignificant, literally one or two apples. Why does the apple tree bloom and not bear fruit? What to do about it? We will answer these questions in this article.
- Incorrect planting of the apple tree
- The apple tree is too young
- The abundance of nitrogen in the soil
- Flower buds affected
- No apple pollinator variety
- Incorrect pruning or crown shaping
The reasons that the apple tree blooms (sometimes quite abundantly) but does not bear fruit, perhaps, in fact, are very many. This may depend on improper planting of the apple tree, on the weather, on the fact that you are in too much of a hurry, and the apple tree is simply too early to bear fruit, on the lack of a pollinator variety, and so on. Let's consider the main reasons in detail.
1. Incorrect planting of the apple tree
Before planting an apple tree, it is very important to choose a good place for it. It is desirable that it be reliably protected from the north wind by a wall of the house, a fence or something similar.
Be sure to inquire about the water table at the site. For a vigorous apple tree, groundwater should be located no closer than two meters from the soil surface; for dwarfs and super dwarfs, one and a half meters from the soil surface is enough.
The apple tree must be planted in a place open from the south, well-lit by the sun, and where neither melt, nor rain, nor irrigation water stagnates. The place should be leveled, without depressions, elevations, and the soil should be well filled with organic (3-5 kg of rotted manure per square meter) and mineral fertilizers (a tablespoon of nitroammofoska per square meter).
When planting, try not to deepen the root collar, that is, the place where the roots pass into the trunk, it should ideally be at the level of the soil or be one centimeter higher. If you deepen it, then this can greatly delay the entry of the apple tree into fruiting.
As for the grafting site - which is 5-7 cm above the root collar, then it must be at this height from the soil surface and left, it is absolutely impossible to deepen it, the tree in this case may die.
Some gardeners rush and plant trees at an angle, this can also greatly delay the plant's entry into fruiting, although the apple tree may bloom. To align the tree, you need to drive in a metal pin from the side opposite to the slope and, using rags of rubber, thrown over the pin and the trunk with a ring, straighten the plant. Then tie it to a strong peg in order to maintain an upright position, and so leave it for five or six years.
2. The apple tree is too young
It so happens that the gardener is in too much of a hurry, and only having planted the apple tree on the site, he wants it to bloom immediately and give the first fruits. In fact, everything is not so simple and even sometimes flowering apple trees begin to bear fruit much later than they bloom for the first time.
This is the biological rhythm of the development of a living organism, which can be remotely compared with the biological development of, say, a female body, that is, until the biological clock starts, one can not even dream of procreation.
An apple tree first needs to acquire a sufficient, as it believes, root system, an aerial part, to get stronger in a new place, as if to "test" its flowering, and then proceed to fruiting, increasing the rate of harvest from year to year, that is, the number of hearths themselves on an apple tree.
To deprive yourself of such an unpleasant surprise as the long-term expectation of the first harvest from the apple tree you planted, try to find out from the seller in the nursery (and this is where apple tree seedlings should be bought) after how many years this variety begins to bear fruit.
Usually modern apple varieties give their first fruits in the fourth or fifth year, while they may well bloom a year or even two earlier. But it is possible that a fruitless variety can last seven or even eight years, presenting you with only flowers (and no matter how surprised you are, this is also the norm).
In general, of course, the age at which the apple tree begins to bear fruit, that is, by and large, into adulthood, depends on the chosen rootstock. The stock is also an apple tree, but wild, it can be seed and clonal, namely: tall (just seed), medium-sized, semi-dwarf and dwarf.
On seed stocks, which are now used only by amateur gardeners - after all, there is nothing easier than sowing seeds and getting seedlings - you can wait ten years for the harvest on them. In addition, the tree will be very tall, at first it will develop roots, the aboveground part, it will require a deep location of groundwater for its prosperity - deeper than two meters.
If the apple tree is grafted on clonal rootstocks, and they can be medium-sized, then you can taste the first apples already three years later, or a maximum of five years after planting the tree. Semi-dwarf - then you will receive apples in a couple of years or at most in four years. And dwarf - these are the lowest trees with an underdeveloped root system - therefore, the level of groundwater for them can be about one and a half meters, and the harvest will be in two or three years, as a rule, no more.
Also, when buying, you cannot be sure that you are being told the exact age of the apple tree, it can be artificially overestimated so that you are more willing to buy an apple tree or even by mistake or purposefully sell a wild apple tree - the same wild, but you can see it by the bluish-purple leaves and thorns at the bottom of the shoots, so be careful.
3. Abundance of nitrogen in the soil
No matter how strange it may seem, both a lack and an excess of fertilizers in the soil can lead to the fact that the apple tree will bloom profusely, but not bear fruit. This usually happens at high doses of nitrogen fertilizers in the soil. The plant grows from an excess of nitrogen, develops, blooms, but does not form fruit - it “fattens”, as the people say.
You can solve the problem by trying for several years not to apply nitrogen fertilizers to the soil at all.
4. Affected flower buds
Flower buds can be affected both under the influence of recurrent frosts and as a result of the action of the flower beetle.
As for the frost, it is more difficult to cope with it - if the apple tree does not bloom at all, but the leaves are blooming, it means that it has reacted to the so-called provocative thaws in the winter. When the flower generative buds began to come out of their dormant state, they died, and when the temperature for winter became normal, the leaf buds, being more resistant to winter weather provocations, survived.
Sometimes flower buds of an apple tree die from recurrent frosts, when they bloom and everything seems to be fine, but uninvited frosts come and lead to the fact that the flowers die, then there will definitely not be a harvest.
You can try to help, but not the fact that it will work. To increase the air temperature in the garden, when the garden is blooming and frosts come, you can make smoke fires around the periphery of the garden. First, you need to agree with the neighbors - would they mind living in the smoke for several days until the frosts subside.
Next, there is a hard work: you need to build large heaps of wet straw or other similar material, which smolders, smokes, but does not burn, and constantly maintain these bonfires so that the garden is in smoke. This is a fairly effective technique, but physically costly - you need to be in the garden almost all the time to keep the fires up, and such an event is effective only in calm weather, when the smoke "stands" in the garden, and if there is wind, it will be blown out of garden and the effect of smoke will be negligible.
You can also try to conduct fine watering of the apple tree with the smallest droplets of water from a hose with a special nozzle, these droplets of water, freezing on the flowers, will give them heat - this technique can also help.
As for the flower beetles - caterpillars eating the contents of the apple blossom, you need to use insecticides that are allowed in the current season. The first treatment must be carried out before the buds open, the second before and the third after flowering.
You can use safer drugs at first, such as 2% Bordeaux liquid or 3% copper sulfate. You can install fishing belts on the trunks, hang pheromone traps from butterflies laying eggs, and if this does not help, then use insecticides that are more harmful to the environment, strictly following the instructions on the package.
5. There is no apple pollinator
Some gardeners have been watching their apple trees bloom for many years, but do not see a single harvest for a very banal reason - only one variety grows on their site and there is no pollinator variety, so there is simply nothing to pollinate the flowers. Pollen of the pollinator variety does not get on the stigma of the pistil, does not germinate, pollination and fruit set does not occur.
In order for your varieties to be pollinated reliably, you need to plant a couple or even three different modern varieties on the site, necessarily blooming at the same time (for their pollination). If the plot is too small, then you can graft a cuttings into the crown of an already growing apple tree, and then the grown branch can serve as a pollinator and even you can surprise your neighbors by growing several varieties on one tree. But you should not rejoice in advance, since there may not be very much pollen in this case and the yields will be modest.
By the way, you can stimulate fruit setting by treating the apple tree with boric acid. To do this, during the flowering period, you need to buy a bottle of boric acid at the pharmacy and pour it into a bucket of water at room temperature, thawed or rainwater, that is, soft.
After that, an apple tree under five years old must be treated from a knapsack sprayer with this composition directly according to flowers, spending half a bucket per tree, and an older apple tree - a bucket per tree or use so much composition so that all flowers, which may be not so much.
6. Incorrect pruning or crown shaping
In conclusion, I would like to say a few words about mistakes in pruning and shaping apple trees. Sometimes gardeners, right after planting, immediately begin to remove a large amount of what they think is extra shoots. At the same time, the balance of the root system and the aerial part is disturbed, and the apple tree restores this balance from year to year, increasing the vegetative mass. She just has no time for fruiting, although she can bloom, but she then tritely discards all the flowers or the vast majority.
Other, even more "advanced" summer residents, deftly wielding a pruner, remove "growths" that are supposedly unnecessary for the apple tree - ringlets, spears, mistaking them for banal twisted shoots. So this is strictly impossible to do, it is on them that most of the fruits are formed, and the apple tree, recovering from such a shock, can, of course, bloom, but most likely it will throw off the flowers and direct its forces to restore the fruiting branches that you removed.
When pruning an apple tree, it is imperative to inspect the crown well and remove tops that grow vertically upward, they pull off nutrients. In some cases, they can bloom, but do not give fruit or give them very late, when they develop as much as possible, at the same time greatly thickening the crown. Such tops need to be cut into a ring or bend some to angles close to straight ones, then they can give a harvest the next year.
These are some simple rules to make the apple tree not only bloom beautifully, but also bear fruit richly. We hope our tips will help you.