- September 13, 2013
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One of the best things about kids is their insatiable hunger for knowledge. My daughter studied botany this past school year and was very eager to put her knew found smarts to the test. She decided that she wanted to grow an apple tree. Not only that, but she wanted to grow it from the seeds of an apple she ate for lunch. I have to admit I was quite skeptical at first, but we indeed got a sapling on its way. It has yet to bear fruit, but that is okay, this has been a fun project to tackle. If we don’t get any fruit, well shucks, but we still get a pretty tree. A free tree at that.
Here is the method we used to get our apple tree going.
First things first, get some apples. Preferably ones that you really like to eat. My husband and I are quite picky about our apples, we prefer crisp and sweet apples. That being said, the apples we had to eat were Fujis. Each time one of us ate one we saved as many whole seeds as we were able to get out of the core. We placed the seeds on a paper towel to dry. The paper towel was on our kitchen windowsill so it received lots of sun. It didn’t take long for them to dry out.
Once dry the seeds were wrapped in a damp paper towel and placed inside of a Tupperware dish. We put the dish and seeds into the refrigerator. Every week or so we checked on our paper towel and seeds. First to see if the seeds had sprouted and second to keep the paper towel damp.
After four to six weeks our seeds had split and begun to sprout just a tiny bit. That was exactly what we were looking for!
Finally it is time to plant. We had some old planting pots hanging around that we used for this. Fill your pot with potting soil, place your best looking seed about four inches deep in the soil.
Now we wait. Water your precious every day just until the soil is moist. Our tree was lovingly put in full sun on our back patio, but this stage can easily be done indoors if you have the space. Eventually you will see a cute little sapling begin to pop out of the soil. Success! Keep loving that tree until its big enough to plant in the ground. Ours was about two feet tall.
Plant that gorgeous tree somewhere where you will love the shade (apple trees can grow up to 20 feet!) and where you can easily pick fruit.
After we planted, our local garden center recommended a base of hardwood mulch around the base of the tree. So, that is what we did.
Currently we are waiting on our baby to keep growing. There isn’t much to do at this stage but wait for nature to take its course. Our garden center instructed us to not prune the tree until it bears fruit.
The cool thing here is that you can grow just about any thing this way. The same method works for plums and peaches. Those are next on our list once our apple tree proves itself by giving us an apple or two.