need advice on OLD apple tree

Maarten van Helden maarten.vanhelden at
Thu Oct 10 01:26:00 EST 1996

In article <sacharof-0710961034230001 at>, 
sacharof at says...
>We have a really old apple tree in our backyard, it's probably 90+ years
>old.  We used to get lots of apples off of it for making pies, but
>recently the apples ALL have worms in them and are basically just all
>funny looking.  Do y'all think the tree is nearing the end of it's life or
>maybe it's an improper ph or fertility thing.  We don't 'tend' it at all. 
>I'm sure the soil is the wrong ph for an apple in Seattle. 
>Should I put compost or mulch around the base of the tree and give some
>dolomite lime to it in the spring? Or should we cut it down and plant
>another one?   (Probably not very likely to happen at all)

The main reason probably is not wrong PH or old age but PRUNING. Apple trees 
need pruning. If the plant gets too many branches the yield will go down and 
too many apples will mean many small and malformed apples. Get a good book on 
pruning and prune the tree to a better structure, if necessary get an axpert 
to help you (he might do it out of interest for such an old tree. 

||\\  //||  Dr. Maarten van Helden
|| \\// ||  Dept. of Entomology
||  \/  ||  Wageningen Agricultural University
||||||||||  Binnenhaven 7, 6709 PD
||      ||  Wageningen, the Netherlands
||      ||  Tel +31-317-485118 Fax +31-317-484821
||      ||  Email: <maarten.vanhelden at>

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