Crabapples or Apples

Discussion in 'Fruit and Nut Trees' started by JanR, Sep 4, 2008.

  1. JanR

    JanR Active Member

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    How do you tell the difference between crabapples and apples? I moved to my property 2 years ago. There are two apple trees and what I have always assumed were two crabapples. One I am sure is a crabapple. The other I am beginning to wonder about. The apples are quite small, about 4 cm. on average. The apples actually taste quite good. I usually make crabapple jelly out of them, but today I made applesauce and it turned out quite good. What is the difference?
     
  2. biggam

    biggam Active Member

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    I don't know that there is a strict distinction. I think of crabs as Malus trees with small-sour fruit, frequently used as flowering landscape trees, or growing as wild apples. Domesticated apples all have some amount of hybridization in their genetics, while some Malus referred to as crabs or crabapples are not hybrids, such as the prairie crab apple, Malus ioensis; or Japanese flowering crabapple, Malus floribunda. Many flowering crabapples are also hybrids, while several newer domestic apple varieties have Malus floribunda several generations back in their genetic family tree, which was used to acquire a gene resistant to scab disease.

    Several varieties of "apple-crabs" were developed by crossing a crabapple with an apple, such as Kerr (Dolgo x Haralson), and Martha. Perhaps this is the type of tree you have.
     
  3. JanR

    JanR Active Member

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    Thank you! From what I found out, it is just size. Anything less than, I think it was 2 inches, is a crabapple.
     

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