Steps to Plant and Care for an Apricot Tree
In Latin, apricot means precious and it truly holds its meaning – apricots are soft, fragrant and sweet. This golden fruit blooms before many other fruits. Early spring is usually the time of the year around when you can spot ripening fruits hanging from the apricot tree. It is a self-fruiting tree and does not require you to plant it alongside other apricot trees to pollinate. You can easily plant one apricot tree in your yard or garden and it will provide enough fruit for the family. These trees are delicate and require proper care when planting and growing.
Planning for planting
To plant an apricot tree, buy a dormant one-year-old tree and plant it in a well-drained soil in early spring, since it is the best time to promote its growth. Make sure to plant them 25 feet apart from each other and if you are planting dwarfs trees, keep a distance of 8 to 15 meters between them. These trees should be provided with a full exposure to sunlight. If you live in north, it is better that you plant the tree on the north side of your garden or wherever you get plenty of sunlight.
Watering the tree
Apricot tree needs abundant water in its growth stage; you would need to water it every day, to maintain the soil moisture. However, once the tree has crossed the stage of establishment, you would only need to water it when there is less rainfall or in cases of draught. If you have planted the tree in a pot instead of a garden, it would need to be watered more regularly.
Mulching is important
Yes, the tree does not require water as other tress do, but mulching is what keeps it well. Make sure you mulch the tree with wooden chips, barks, plastic sheets or any organic matter to hold the moisture in and protect it from frost in winters.
Apricot trees are prone to be infected by bacterial cankers. Pruning is necessary to maintain the shape of the tree and to eliminate dead and infected parts of the plant. Once the tree has grown and started bearing fruit, trimming and pruning should be done regularly so as to maintain a beautiful bush shape. This will increase it growth and productivity. It is advised to prune the tree from the center and direct the growing branches outwards so the fruit can get adequate amount of sunlight. Prune the tree in spring, as it will stimulate the growth.
Thinning of apricots
Thinning is necessary to improve the quality and size of the fruit the tree is bearing. Apricot tree is known for bearing more fruit than it can hold. If your tree is bearing too much fruit, you would need to thin the fruits. Let there be the space of 2 to 6 inches between each fruit to provide the fruit with enough space to grow properly. Make sure you do not yank the fruit off, since it might affect the branches. All you have to do is pull off the excess fruit.