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Growing Together, Issue #104
August 27, 2015

Sargent Crabapple - Small Delicious Fruit

Welcome to the August Growing Together newsletter of gardening with Herbee. We want to welcome all of you back again. Herbee and I love meeting with you once a month. This month we wanted to share some insights on a shrub like small tree, Sargent Crabapple.

sargent crabapple

The sargent crabapple grows best in zones 5-7. Once you get into zone 8, and warmer climates, crabapples can't do well in the summertime heat. Herbee and I know our summers here in the southeastern US get warm, so crabapple trees can be tricky to grown and maintain their health.

The sargent variety will can mature anywhere from 6 to 8 or 9 feet high, and can spread up to 10 feet. This is a beautiful specimen in the spring months. The buds appear in a red-pink tone, turning into beautiful white flowers. The tree in some ways reminds us of a Dogwood in full bloom. Birds and wild life are attracted to these magnificent blooms. Like most apple trees, the flowers are fragrant, and a reminder to us, of the natural wonders of nature. In the summer months, tiny fruit begins to appear. The fruit starts out green in color. Once the fruit begins to turn to its final red tone, you know the time is coming to pick and harvest.

This small shrub like tree likes full sun. It will grow in well drained soil, and enjoys acid base. Be aware, the sargent crabapple, like most crabapple trees, doesn't take to well to sea spray or drought. It can be transplanted to a new location, if the roots haven't been established in ground for a long time. One of the beautiful elements of this specie, is its canopy top. It isn't necessary to prune the canopy. In fact, you may loose its natural shape if pruned. Any trimming should be done if there are damaged or dead branches.

Insects can always create a problem with any tree. Aphids or mites can become a problem with the crabapple tree. Use insecticidal soap. This is one of the safest solutions. There are different options for planting this crabapple. It creates a great focal point in a front yard. You can plant a row of them along the edge of your property. Due to the mature height, you don't have to worry about the tree interfering with power or other lines. The tree can go into a larger bed with evergreen shrubs around. Add some perennial flowers and flowering herbs as well. The Sargent variety is a great addition to a garden or landscape area. Why not give those special birds a nice nesting place in your own outside area.

Tip For The Month

For many of you fall is approaching, and cooler temperatures. A reminder for all of you when thinking about transplanting your shrubs or a tree. It is critical that you plan out this project. Take your shovel and dig around the plant. Your goal is to keep the mother or tap root in tack. If you don't, the chances of survival won't be very favorable. Have your new hole dug and ready to put the shrub or tree in. Watering is also critical for a healthy transition. Below is a link to get all the steps are transplanting. Worth the read.

Thought For The Month

This article on the sargent crabapple has a little special meaning to me. My mom was a women that love to make bake, and also make homemade jelly, and other fruit dishes. She made this delicious canned crabapples. We would eat them as a side dish along with the main meal. You talk about a wonderful taste! I can't remember the ingredients, but I know she cooked the crabapples, and believe she added some cinnamon and of course sugar.

After Tom and I got married, years ago, she would send us a jar or two of these wonderful homemade crabapples. She passed on in 2000, and now I wish I could have seen her recipe. If you have some favorite family recipes, make sure you copy it down, so you can pass it on.

We would like to thank you again for joining us this month. We hope you have a great September, and look forward to being with all of you next month. Plan now for your upcoming season.

Transplanting Shrubs And Trees

Herbee and Kimberly
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