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TreesFruit Edible

Malus domestica 'Spartan' (D)
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

apple 'Spartan'

An upright, spreading tree which is covered in pure white, cup-shaped flowers in mid- and late spring, followed by crisp, juicy, dark red, dessert apples that can be harvested in early October. It's one of the best red-skinned varieties and the fruit will keep well for several months if they are stored correctly. Pollination group 3: requires cross-pollination from another apple tree

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Size
Ultimate height
4–8 metres
Time to ultimate height
5–10 years
Ultimate spread
4–8 metres
Growing conditions
Clay
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Well–drained
pH
Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring White Green
Summer Green
Autumn Red
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

North–facing or South–facing or East–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Exposed or Sheltered
Hardiness
H5
Botanical details
Family
Rosaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Columnar upright, Spreading branched
Potentially harmful
Although generally edible when cooked, seeds contain toxins so these should be removed if you are considering eating the fruit, usually grown as an ornamental shrub. see the HTA guide to potentially harmful plants for further information and useful contact numbers
Genus

Malus are small to medium-sized deciduous trees with showy flowers in spring and ornamental or edible fruit in autumn; some have good autumn foliage colour

Name status

Accepted

How to grow

Cultivation

Prefers fertile soil conditions. The height will depend on the rootstock and training method. Suitable for all training forms, including espalier and fan-trained. Keep a clear area around the trunk of at least 60cm radius. Fruit thinning may be required. For more details see apple cultivation

Propagation

Propagate by grafting in midwinter or chip budding in late summer on clonal rootstock for fruit. The rootstock will largely determine the vigour of the tree. Fruit grown from pips will not resemble the parent

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Patio and container plants
  • Wildlife gardens
  • Edible fruit
Pruning

Prune according to chosen training method. See apple pruning

Pests

May be susceptible to aphids, including woolly aphid and rosy apple aphid, fruit tree red spider mite, codling moth and other caterpillars

Diseases

May be susceptible to apple canker, apple scab, blossom wilt, brown rot, fireblight, honey fungus and powdery mildews

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