Characteristics of the Liberty Apple Tree
Apple tree Liberty - a variety bred by breeders from the American Institute of Horticulture. The material for its creation in 1976 was the local species Mekown and Welsey. Fruit culture has spread rapidly in many countries. In the 1980s the variety also entered the USSR. As a result of the tests, the Liberty apple tree was brought to the State Register of Russia.
Characteristics of the Liberty Apple Tree
The variety is early winter. In Russia, it is most often grown in the south and in the middle lane.
Although ripening occurs in September, fruits can be harsh right after harvest. The maturity stage is a period not earlier than the end of October.
The Liberty variety begins fruiting quickly and is known for productivity increasing with age. Experts note that on a medium-sized rootstock the apple tree shows the best productivity potential. Good resistance to rust and monilial burns has also been noted.
The use of fruits is universal. But most often they are eaten fresh. Also, from the variety of apples Liberty, delicious desserts, marmalade, jam, and jam are obtained. They show themselves well in different drinks - compotes and juices, ciders and wines. You can freeze the fruits and make dried fruits out of them.
Advantages and disadvantages
There are many characteristics of the variety that make it popular. The benefits of apple trees include:
- excellent frost resistance;
- rapid onset of fruiting;
- the possibility of commercial use;
- immunity to scab;
- good transportability.
Liberty's main drawback is its susceptibility to powdery mildew. With prolonged storage, the fruit flesh begins to bitter - you need to remember the timing and have time to use the fruit on time.
Tree and fruit characterization
The apple tree of this species is relatively not high.
In youth, culture grows rapidly, then this ability decreases. The apple tree reaches 2.3-2.5 m, some trees - 3 m.
It has a rounded crown, which is not very thick. The branches are medium, carmine red. Leaves have a smooth surface and a rich shade. Abundant flowering takes place in May. The cup is small in size, the petals have a white tone with a pink tint.
The fruits are one-dimensional, conical in shape, reach a weight of 140 g. Most often they have a yellow-green color. On the fruits, you can see the blurred blush of burgundy with a touch.
The peel of apples is not very thick, shiny. Light flesh cream or yellowish-green, crisp. It has a fine-grained texture and a pleasant aroma.
Description of the taste of the variety - sweet and sour, refreshing. Tasters give him 4.2 points.
The reason for the low rating is a low sugar content, slightly more than 8%. Gardeners also note a refreshing aftertaste of Liberty apples.
If good pollinators have been chosen, a lot of fruit will be planted, which will provide a very high yield.
The fruiting of the variety is stable; it improves with age. He brings the first fruits in the 2nd year of life. Each year the tree will produce more fruit. From the age of 4, the apple tree brings 10-12 kg, and from the one that grows 7-8 years old, they remove up to 40 kg.
In order to get a consistently large crop, apple trees are grown near pollinators, on nutrient soil, taking into account all care measures.
In a temperate climate, up to 24 tons of fruit are obtained from 1 ha, which allows you to recoup all expenses in 3-4 years. This fact, as well as the presentation of the fruit, as well as the duration of storage made the variety popular in commercial use.
During flowering, many inflorescences are formed. Tree pollen is enough for pollination of half of the flowers with the formation of ovaries in 10% of them.
To increase productivity around the Liberty apple tree, the following varieties are planted:
Variety variety - apple tree Sister Liberty. It is not so hardy, suitable for the southern regions. Cultivation takes place on a dwarf rootstock - the tree does not exceed 2.5 m. Fruits in 2-3 years annually.
The indicator of this property of the apple tree is above average. It is only noted that this applies to the regions in which the variety can be grown.
These are temperate places that do not differ in too cold winters. Frosts in them should not fall below -40 ° C.
The apple tree has the Vf gene, which provided its resistance to scab. Immunity to the defeat of powdery mildew in the variety is not observed. But timely preventive measures prevent the development of this tree-dangerous disease.
Apples grow in any region
The North Caucasus region is most suitable for growing these apples. But in Polesie, in the northeast, in the Donbass, this is no less promising. These trees are found in the suburbs.
The advantages of the variety and the simplicity of caring for it made it popular in Russia and Ukraine. Apple trees are grown both for private use and for commercial purposes.
When growing varieties on their own plot between the trees leave at least 2 m. When using fruits for commercial purposes, apple trees are planted in denser rows.
Both spring and autumn months are suitable for planting varieties. The best time is mid-April or May. It depends on weather conditions and soil conditions.
They plant trees in October, when the foliage has already fallen. The main thing is to have time to do this before the first frost, so that the seedling adapts to the cold.
First, choose a suitable place on the site - it should be well lit by the sun. The soil is fertile. Ideal options are loamy soils and sandy loam.
The seedling must be of high quality. To do this, check the roots for damage. A good option to buy is a 2-year-old tree that will begin to bear fruit earlier.
If some time passes between the acquisition and planting, be careful not to dry the roots. They are wrapped with a damp cloth and placed in a plastic bag. Another option is to drip the seedling or place in moist sawdust.
Dig a hole in the fall, if the landing is spring. Its size depends on the roots of the tree - they should be placed freely. Dimensions can vary from 80 to 100 cm in depth and from 90 to 110 cm in diameter.
Feeding (ash, compost) is put in the pit. If the soil is clay, sand is also added to the planting site. If sandy - clay.
First, a mound is made in the pit from the ground where the seedling is placed. Near it, a stake for the garter is installed and attached to the future apple tree. The soil is poured on top and slightly compacted. At the end, the pit is watered with 2 buckets of water.
When the soil has settled down, add another layer of earth. Then the trunk circle is covered with peat or covered with hay. During growth, they monitor the root neck - it should be 5-6 cm above the soil.
An important point is watering. It is produced regularly and in sufficient quantities. The amount of water and frequency depends on the weather. In most cases, 3 times is enough, but if it is dry on the street, the number of watering is increased to 5.
Roots and foliage need periodic fertilizing. If necessary, apple trees are treated for diseases and pests. If the trees are healthy, do it for prevention.
In the spring, crop is trimmed. Weak shoots, diseased and branches growing inside the crown are removed.
Harvesting and storage of crops
For these apple trees, a mixed form of fruit formation is characteristic. They grow on gloves and spears. One of the most important factors for the timely ripening of fruits is proper care and protection of trees from pests.
Liberty apples are harvested no earlier than the second half of September. At this time, they ripen to their best taste.
Store them, like other fruits, advised in the dark and at a cool temperature. In this form, they are used for 2 months.
In the refrigerator, apples will not lose their taste and original appearance within six months. If the room is too wet or damp, the fruits will quickly deteriorate.
Often this apple tree is called a variety without problems. It is rarely exposed to disease, brings a good harvest, which is why gardeners advise using strong supports.
Apples taste superior to the fruits of other winter species. It is better to eat or harvest them in the first few months of storage. Six months later, they are bitter and may turn black inside.