From my experience, the best time to plant trees is Fall. This gives the tree all winter to establish its roots. When you plant a tree in Spring, all the tree’s energy goes right into sprouting leaves. Don’t get me wrong, I fully intend to plant trees this upcoming Spring, as funds allow. But right now, I’m planting trees too.
I bought 3 apple trees which are bred to be disease resistant. I will not be spraying my apple trees, and by purchasing disease resistant trees, it will be easier to have healthy happy apples. I purchased these trees from Stark Brothers in a “disease resistant” bundle. The bundle includes:
Enterprise Apple: This is a red apple which matures late in the season (mid-October). It has a mildly tart taste (according to Stark Brothers).
Jonafree Apple: This apple is also red, and matures a little earlier (mid-September), the taste in a combo sweet/tart. Sounds like a good baking apple to me.
GoldRush Apple: This is a yellowish golden apple which matures mid to late October. This has a very sweet taste, and is good for fresh eating.
This is a nice combination of apples and picking times. I already have Gold Delicious and Cox’s Orange Pippin Antique Apple trees planted. These trees’ fruit matures late September and mid-September respectively. They both have sweet fruits. This should keep me busy with apple sauce and apple butter through the fall once these tree mature.
As these trees were mail-ordered, they were shipped “bare-root”. That means they look like sticks when you get them. All three trees came in a box that measure 4 inches x 4 inches x 6 feet.
After the bare-root trees arrive get them into a bucket of water and give them a good drink. Make sure the roots are fully submerged. Ideally, let the tree soak for 4-6 hours, but no more than 24 hours.
I will be using two of these trees as a living grape arbor. Will it work? I have no clue! But I will in a few years, and so will you. I will plant them directly next to my grapes with the idea that the grapes will climb up the trees. This apple tree set up allows me to function stack my apple trees. My apple trees will be: making a stronger better soil, providing apples, a home to wildlife and act as an arbor to the grapes.
I have two types of grapes: Joy and Neptune. The Joy grape matures in August and the Neptune grape matures in early September. This allows me to function stack my trips to visit the grapes. When I check on the grapes, I am checking on the apples and vice versa.
Here is a video outlining the basics of how to plant a tree: