Everyone loves apples and there is nothing like a ripe apple picked straight from the tree. But if you live in warm regions, most apple varieties will not perform well in your area because they need a lot of cold weather during winter and that just doesn’t happen in warm regions. Luckily for gardeners in those warm areas, there are apples especially bred for them and the Anna Apple is one of the very best. It needs just a few weeks of night temperatures below 45oF to get all the chilling it needs.
Early in spring it will burst into bloom and before you know it you will be watching those baby apples growing into red beauties just waiting to be eaten. This apple only grows to 10 or perhaps 15 feet in height, so it is easy to harvest from. Most varieties of apple trees need another variety to pollinate the flowers and you may not have enough room to grow two trees. The Anna Apple is partially self-pollinating, so it will give a good crop from just one tree, which makes this variety an ideal choice for small gardens
Growing Anna Southern Apple Trees
The Anna Apple is a small, sturdy tree that has good resistance to the pests and diseases that can attack apple trees. Most importantly, it will produce a crop of apples without needing a second variety as a pollinator. In fact, very few other apples will pollinate it because it flowers long before most other varieties. To obtain the largest crop of apples, we recommend that if you have the space for another tree, plant a Dorsett Apple, or an Ein Shemer Apple, which are the only varieties that flower early enough to pollinate the Anna Apple.
Climate and Hardiness
Although apples are the most popular fruit in the world, when it comes to growing them, most varieties do best in areas with cool winters. This is because a certain amount of time at low temperature is necessary to develop the flower buds. Growers use the term ‘chill hours’, which means the amount of time that the tree spends between leaf drop and flowering (bud-break) below a temperature of 45oF. Many of the common types of apples need 600 to 1,000 chill-hours and to experience that you need to live in a cool area. If you want to successfully grow apples in zones 8 and 9 it can be hard, since there may only be 300-500 chill-hours in such warm regions. Fortunately Anna is an apple that needs only 200-300 chill-hours to flower well and produce a crop of terrific apples, making it an ideal choice for warm areas where other apples will not grow normally.
The Anna Apple grows to be a compact tree – reaching 15 to 25 feet tall at the most, or less if you prune it regularly. It flowers early in the season well before other apples and produces an early crop of delicious red-skinned apples. This apple was developed for warm regions and it will do well in zones 8 and 9 where other apple trees will not. It is so tasty and delicious that you may want to grow it even if you live in a cooler area, and it will do well in cooler regions too.
Planting and Initial Care
Like all apples it prefers a well-drained soil that does not become too dry. It will grow well on clay soil that does not stay wet for too long. If your soil is rather wet, then you can plant the tree on a mound raised up to a foot above ground level. Water thoroughly and regularly during the first season and then water deeply during dry weather. Prune in late winter during a dry period, not when it is raining or forecast to rain, to control the spread of disease. Keep the center of your tree open and vase-shaped and shorten back side shoots on the main branches to develop the fruit-bearing ‘spurs’ early in the life of the tree, to bring big crops sooner.
History and Origins of the Anna Southern Apple Tree
The Anna Apple was developed in Israel in the 1950s. Abba Stein was a breeder and grower at the Kibbutz Ein Shemer, and he wanted to create apples that would do well in the warm climate of the Middle East. He crossed European apples with local Arabic varieties to produce several apples for warm climates, and the Anna Apple is one of his best. Our trees are produced from stem pieces derived from his original tree, grafted onto suitable apple rootstocks. We sell only trees that are true to the original form, and are constantly renewing our stock to ensure customers get fresh, healthy plants. The demand for these rare varieties suitable for Florida and other southern areas is high, so supplies of this tree may be limited. To avoid disappointment order now.