Dolgo Crabapple Tree Overview
The Dolgo Crabapple tree is well known not only for its diverse uses, but also for being an early blooming variety and a good pollinator for other apple varieties. In fact, you can make apple jellies, sauces, pies, butters and cider due to its crisp, juicy, sweet-sharp, and lightly bitter flavor. It is small in size and has a bright red crimson color skin with yellow flesh. Niels Ebbesen Hansen further developed Dolgo at the South Dakota Experiment Station in 1897 as a seedling of Siberian Crab, a stock he imported from Russia to the United States. Then it was introduced in 1917.
Dolgo Crabapple has beautiful white blossoms, which is why it is often used as an ornamental tree. The tree can grow well in hardiness zones 3 to 8. The tree is moderately vigorous large upright tree. The fruit ripens in late August or September. This tree is also disease resistant to scab, powdery mildew, cedar apple rust, and fireblight. It needs 400 chill hours.
- Uses: eating fresh, making apple jelly, sauce, dessert, making cider and juice, ornamental use often for landscaping, good source of pollen to pollinate other apple trees
- Taste: Crisp, juicy, sweet-sharp, hint of bitterness, pineapple and strawberry like flavor
- Size: Small
- Color: Bright red in skin color with yellow flesh
- Hardiness Zones: 3 – 8
- Disease resistance
- Scab – very resistant
- Rust – very resistant
- Fireblight– moderately resistant
- Mildew – very resistant
- Harvest period: 4
- Flowering Group: 2
- Cross Pollinates with: Chestnut, Granny Smith, Alkmene, Golden Russet, McIntosh, Wickson, WineCrisp to name a few! Crabapple are great pollinators for other trees.
- Cultivation: This apple tree is moderately vigorous. Large upright spreading tree up to 13 feet tall. Has a long blooming period. Great source of pollen for other apple trees, commonly used in commercial orchards.
- Storage: Does not store well.
Check out our guides page for information on how to take care of trees.
How to Water
- Water your tree with a garden hose or a watering can.
- Water the tree deeply when you see the soil has dried out.
- Water the tree slowly and evenly all around the root zone.
- Avoid splashing the leaves with water, as this can cause fungal diseases.
- Let the soil dry out between waterings.
- Mulch around the base of the tree to help retain moisture and reduce weed growth.
- Provide supplemental water during periods of drought or dry weather.
How to prune a Dolgo crabapple tree?
- Prune the Dolgo crabapple tree in late winter or early spring, before it begins to flower.
- Cut off any dead, diseased, or damaged branches.
- Remove any crossing branches.
- Prune the central leader (main trunk) and any upright branches, leaving branches that grow outward.
- Cut back branches that are too long or have grown too close to the ground.
- Thin out the branches to allow more air and light to penetrate the center of the tree.
- Prune the sides of the tree to shape it and keep it to a desired size.
- Remove any suckers (new shoots growing from the base of the tree).
- Prune with a smile on your face and enjoy the beauty of your Dolgo crabapple tree!
How can I plant and care for the tree?
For more detailed instruction on how to plant an apple tree, follow this article.
- 1. Choose a sunny spot in your yard that is sheltered from the wind. Make sure the soil is well-draining.
- 2. Dig a hole twice as wide and just as deep as the root ball of your tree.
- 3. Remove the tree from the container and place it in the hole. Make sure the top of the root ball is level with the soil.
- 4. Backfill the hole with the soil you removed earlier and pat it down firmly.
- 5. Water the tree deeply and mulch the area around the trunk in a 3-4 inch layer.
- 6. Prune the branches to the desired shape and size.
- 7. Feed the tree with a fertilizer designed for fruit trees.
- 8. Watch your Dolgo crabapple tree thrive in its happy home.
Is Dolgo crabapple self pollinating?
Yes, the Dolgo crabapple tree is self-pollinating! This means that it does not require another tree in order to produce fruit. However cross-pollination with another crabapple tree can often lead to larger and better-tasting fruit. Moreover, it is important to note that self-pollination can reduce genetic diversity.
Therefore since the Dolgo crabapple tree is a good pollinator for other trees because of its long bloom season, you can plant with other apple trees in the same area.
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