Apricot tree care

Apricot trees are easy to care for when growing in their favored climate but can require some maintenance in less-than-perfect climates. In general, these trees do well in full sun, well-drained soil, and ample air circulation to minimize the risk of fungal disease.

Apricot tree care basics

Apricot trees require regular watering for healthy growth; aim for about 1-2 inches per week during their first year after planting (more if you live in an arid climate). During summer months, check on them regularly to make sure they don’t dry out completely—it can take up to 10 gallons of water per week, depending on size. If you have a drip irrigation system installed near your trees, it will help keep them hydrated without having to worry about manual watering every few days or so.

Fertilizing mature apricot trees should be done three times a year: once in early spring, before new growth begins; again midseason when fruit starts forming; and finally late summer after harvest has finished but prior to winter. Slow-release granular fertilizer or liquid fertilizer diluted according to package instructions can be applied directly onto surface soils beneath branches where roots can absorb nutrients easily from rainwater runoff.

Man pruning apricot tree in february

Pruning is essential for maintaining shape and encouraging new growth, resulting in more flowers during bloom. Start pruning young apricot trees by removing any dead wood as well as crossing branches that could rub against each other. Cut back weak shoots too close to the main stems. Thin out dense foliage clusters if needed. Remove suckers from below graft unions. Reduce height by cutting off tips of overly long branches.

Watering apricot trees

Watering an apricot tree is essential for its health and growth. The frequency of watering depends on the climate, soil type, and amount of rainfall in your area. Generally speaking, an apricot tree should be watered deeply once a week during the growing season (spring to fall). It’s important to water slowly so that the moisture can penetrate deep into the root zone.

Apricot tree fruiting

If you live in a hot or dry climate, you may need to water more frequently. To check if your tree needs watering, stick your finger about two inches into the soil near the trunk; if it feels dry then it’s time to water. When watering an apricot tree, use a hose with a slow-running nozzle or drip irrigation system for the best results. Aim for about 10 gallons per square foot each time you water—this will ensure that enough moisture reaches down into the root zone where it can do some good.

It’s also important not to overwater; too much moisture can cause problems like root rot and fungal diseases which can kill off your entire tree. If possible try using mulch around your apricot trees as this helps retain moisture in between watering sessions while also suppressing weeds and keeping roots cool during hot summer days.

Finally, remember that newly planted trees require extra attention when it comes to watering; they need more frequent deep soakings until their roots are established after about one year of growth.

Apricot blossom

Fertilizing apricots

Fertilizing is an important part of apricot tree care. Without the right nutrients, your tree won’t be able to grow and thrive as it should. The type of fertilizer you use will depend on the age and size of your tree, as well as the soil conditions in your area.

For young trees (under 3 years old), use a balanced fertilizer that contains equal amounts of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. If you have a proper soil test, follow the instructions in the fertilizer recommendations.

Mature trees need less frequent fertilization than younger ones. Once every two to three years is usually enough for them to stay healthy and productive. It’s also important to avoid applying too much fertilizer.

Pruning apricot trees

Pruning is an important part of apricot tree care. It helps to promote healthy growth and encourage the production of fruit. Pruning should be done in late winter or early spring before new growth begins. This will ensure that the pruned branches have time to heal before they are exposed to cold temperatures and other stresses during the growing season.

When pruning, it’s important to remove any dead, diseased, or damaged branches first as these can spread disease throughout your tree if left unchecked. Then you can begin shaping your tree by removing any crossing or rubbing branches that could cause damage over time due to their close proximity and weight on one another. Also, look for any weakly attached limbs that may break off easily when stressed with wind or snow load and remove them as well.

It’s also important not to over-prune your apricot trees as this can reduce the flowering potential for next year’s crop; aim for no more than 25% of total canopy removal each year so that you don’t stress out the tree too much at once. Finally, make sure all cuts are clean and made just above a bud facing outward from the center of the branch so that new shoots will grow in a desirable direction away from other parts of the tree structure rather than towards it (this is called “heading back”).

Once you have finished pruning your apricot trees, give them some extra care by applying a layer of mulch around their base. This will help keep moisture levels consistent and protect the roots from extreme temperature fluctuations during both hot summers and cold winters.

Apricot tree care

Pest control for apricots

Pests can be a major problem for apricot trees. Common pests include aphids, scale insects, mites, and caterpillars. Aphids are small green or black bugs that suck the sap from the leaves of your tree. They can cause leaf yellowing and curling as well as stunted growth.

Scale insects are tiny white or brown bumps on the stems and branches of your tree which secrete a sticky substance called honeydew which attracts ants and other insects to your tree. Mites are microscopic arachnids that feed on plant tissue causing discoloration, distorted growth, webbing between branches and premature leaf drop. Caterpillars chew through leaves leaving behind ragged holes in their wake.

The best way to prevent pest infestations is by keeping your apricot trees healthy with proper pruning techniques, adequate water supply, and fertilization practices that promote strong root systems capable of resisting disease-causing organisms like fungi or bacteria. Additionally, you should regularly inspect for signs of insect damage, such as wilting leaves or chewed edges on foliage, so you can take action quickly, if needed, before an infestation gets out of hand.

Mary Jane Duford
Mary Jane Duford

Mary Jane Duford is a quintessential Canadian gardener. An engineer by trade, she tends to an ever-expanding collection of plants. In her world, laughter blooms as freely as her flowers, and every plant is raised with a dash of Canadian grit.

Mary Jane is a certified Master Gardener and also holds a Permaculture Design Certificate. She's also a proud mom of three, teaching her little sprouts the crucial difference between a garden friend and foe.

When she's not playing in the dirt, Mary Jane revels in her love for Taylor Swift, Gilmore Girls, ice hockey, and the surprisingly soothing sounds of bluegrass covers of classic hip-hop songs. She invites you to join her garden party, a place where you can share in the joy of growing and where every day is a new opportunity to find the perfect spot for yet another plant.

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