March 22, 2011
Pink and White Crabapples in Bloom
Here are some pictures of my 'Spring Snow' and 'Royal Raindrops' crabapple trees. Of course they are from last year, since we're still about 2 months too early for crabapple blooms this season. But I never got around to posting them last year.
'Spring Snow' is supposedly the only fruitless crabapple tree. Its dimensions are estimated at 20' x 20', but it grows in a columnar form - so maybe a bit narrower than the estimate? I had a hard time picking between this tree and one of the flowering pears, but ended up with a Spring Snow since it stays smaller and smells much better in bloom than a pear. I also like how the flowers come out with the leaves to enhance them, while pears flower before the leaves emerge. But pears have glossy leaves and better fall color . . . there just isn't a perfect tree, is there?
Here is what I thought was a 'Prairie Fire' crab, but I now think it's a 'Royal Raindrops' - see this link for more info about RR, plus pictures. Aren't the flowers a pretty color? The leaves are dark maroon and are shaped like hawthorne tree leaves with pretty cut edges.
I have three of these baby trees in the back (plus six of the Spring Snows). Their dimensions are estimated at 20' tall by 15' wide. They're supposed to get berry-like red fruit and orange-red leaves in the fall, though none of them did last year. I'm excited to see the fall color and fruit when the trees mature more.
I keep meaning to prune off some branches and try to force them into bloom in a vase, but haven't done it yet. How early can you cut crab branches for forcing? I'm sure the answer is on the internet somewhere and I just need to look it up.
One of the 'Royal Raindrops' trees looks like a cat scratched up the trunk. I'm worried that the deepest wound (shown above) will continue to pull apart and disfigure the trunk as it grows. The wound is on the north side of the trunk, so it's protected from winter sunscald. Should I replace it now, while it's small and easier to match to the size of the other two trees, or wait and see what the trunk does? What do you think, fellow gardeners?