Flowering Crabapple - 'Malus'Malus is the Latin name of flowering crabapples. Even as this page is being written there is little doubt that another cultivar of crabapple is being introduced into trade. While the actual number of crabapple types is open to debate, there are likely around 600 types of crabapple being sold because of the ease of hybridization. Many crabapples are almost worthless because of extreme susceptibility to apple scab, rust, fire blight, leaf spot, and powdery mildew. Unfortunately the most popular types (i.e., 'Almey', 'Hopa', 'Eleyi', 'Bechtels', 'Red Silver') tend to be the most susceptible to disease. Considering the tremendous number of crabapples available only a handful or so meet the stringent requirements of excellent flower, habit, fruit, and disease resistance. Many types are slightly susceptible to certain diseases and are perfectly acceptable provided their limitations are understood. There are few other trees or shrubs that approach the beauty of a crabapple tree in full flower. Valued for foliage, flowers, fruit, and variations in habit or size, crabapples are used as ornamental, deciduous, flowering landscape plantings. By using different species and cultivars, the flowering period can be extended from late April to late May and early June with colors ranging from white through purplish red. Some general characteristics of the genus are listed below.
||Too many to list.|
||Deciduous Ornamental Trees and Shrubs|
||Leaves vary by cultivar and species.|
||Varies by cultivar and species. Most are between 15 and 25 feet in height at maturity.|
||Zone 5 to 8. For an idea of your plant zone please visit the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map.|
||Varies by cultivar and species.Range from low mound-like plants to narrow upright or pendulous types. Branches can be alternate, upright, horizontal, or drooping, rarely with spinescent branches.|
||Typically slow to medium|
||White to pink or carmine to red to rose. Single flowers have 5 petals. Flowers occur in umbel or corymb-like racemes. Petals are small, sub-orbicular to obovate. Stamens 15 to 20, usually with yellow anthers.|
|Diseases & Insects:
||Fireblight, Cedar Apple Rust (Asiatic varieties are resistant), Apple Scab, Canker, Scale, Boers (may be a serious problem), Aphids. Resistance varies by individual cultivar and species.|
||One of the more elegant of flowering trees and shrubs; A choice specimen when placed near buildings or in the yard. It can be integrated into foundation plantings especially corner plantings where it would help to soften vertical lines and make the house appear longer. It's variation of bloom and fruit colors offer endless possibilities as long as disease and insect concerns are properly addressed.|
||Very adaptable to varying soil conditions, but prefers heavy loam. The soil, regardless of type, should be well=drained, moist and acidic.|
||Water regularly after initial planting and prune as necessary to maintain form and desired shape.|
||Fertilize an area three times the canopy spread of the tree 1 to 2 times a year with a 10-10-10 fertilizer. Only fertilize an established tree.
||Dig a hole three times the diameter of the root system, with a depth no deeper than the original soil line on trunk. Break up the soil to the finest consistency possible. Place plant in hole and fill, compacting the fill dirt. Water the plant heavily to seal soil around the roots and remove air pockets. Water well, and remember to water regularly until they have started to grow.