The apple tree as a fruit tree with a half trunk

The apple tree as a fruit tree with a half trunk

Mediocrity can also be perfect

In the past, tall tree tops of apple trees with high trunks dominated the landscape, as they kept space free for agricultural work in the fields in between. Today, however, apples are increasingly only grown in specialized businesses and in private gardens. Here, the effort involved in harvesting and general maintenance should be as low as possible. An apple tree with a half trunk usually forms a treetop with a maximum height of four to six meters. In this way, work with the ladder remains manageable with regular tree pruning and the harvest can also be done from the ground for a large part of the fruit. Interestingly, apple trees with weaker growth usually bear more apples than their tall relatives with a standard trunk.

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Uses for a half-trunk apple tree

A half-trunk apple tree offers various advantages due to its manageable dimensions. For example, several different apple varieties can also be planted in smaller gardens, which not only enables the harvest to be staggered, but also enables the trees to pollinate one another. Half-trunks can also be used to create a trellis in the apple tree, in which the tree crown is raised as a narrow wall along tension wires.

Refine a half-stem from an apple seedling yourself

With a little patience and luck, you can also pull an apple tree from a core yourself. After about three years, you have to remove all side branches from this seedling in order to maintain a suitable grafting base with a straight trunk. You can then graft a suitable vines onto this at a height of around 80 to 120 centimeters to obtain an apple tree with a half-trunk. For grafting, you will need the following things:

  • a little tree as a base
  • Edelreiser
  • a sharp knife
  • clean planting scissors
  • Tying bast
  • Wound closure wax

Tips & Tricks

Basically, one speaks of a half-trunk when the tree top is about 80 to 120 centimeters high. Lower specimens are called bushes, while higher branched trees are called high stems.