Moscow apricots, varieties and care
Features of agricultural technology of apricot in the north
The history of apricot in Russia
Apricot is a southerner. But this is how a person is arranged - what he does not have, that more he wants. Therefore, generation after generation of gardeners persistently strives to grow this culture in more northern regions that are unusual for it.
For the first time, apricots called "apricot apples" came to Moscow in the middle of the 17th century. They were repeatedly brought to the garden of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich, where they, apparently, died just as many times. Imagine what other difficulties there were with the delivery of these plants!
For example, in 1654 a consignment of southern cultures was transported from Holland through Arkhangelsk to Moscow. Among them were two "apricot apple" trees. But because of the quarantine on the occasion of the "pestilence" the road to Moscow was closed, and all this wealth, stuck in Vologda, apparently disappeared there.
And what tricks they did not resort to to protect the brought plants from destructive frosts: they were bent under the snow, and covered for the winter with straw and matting, and kept in insulated sheds with walls made of wooden shields dismantled in the spring. Since the time of Peter I, apricots have also been grown in greenhouses. There were also numerous attempts at so-called acclimatization, for which southern cultures were transferred to the north by cuttings or trees. Gardeners lost many years and a lot of money on this useless business.
This mistake, by the way, is being repeated now, however, many of our compatriots are mainly carried away by foreign ornamental plants. The finest hour for the advancement of southern crops to the north, including apricot, was the discovery of I.V. Michurin, which was that this was possible only by breeding new varieties of plants from seeds. The great scientist also created the first varieties of apricot, capable of bearing fruit already in the Tambov region and even in places favorable for gardening in the Moscow region.
But the real apricot came to the gardens near Moscow literally in recent years after the completion of more than half a century of work on the creation of winter-hardy varieties in Moscow, in the Main Botanical Garden of the Russian Academy of Sciences. These are the varieties: Iceberg, Alyosha, Lel, Tsarsky, Countess, Aquarius, Monastic, Favorite.
We owe their appearance to Professor A. K. Skvortsov and Candidate of Biological Sciences L. A. Kramarenko. All these varieties work well in the south of the Moscow region and in the adjacent regions; in more northern regions, it is necessary to select places with a favorable microclimate for them.
The fruits of these varieties of apricot are mainly of the canning type; wonderful jams and compotes are prepared from them. Experts say that the taste of these preserves is even better than that of the southern varieties. But Moscow apricots are quite suitable for fresh consumption, Lel, Iceberg, Tsarsky and Countess are especially tasty. The largest fruits - 25-30 g - in the varieties Monastyrsky, Countess, Aquarius, Iceberg, Favorit, in the rest they are slightly smaller - 15-20 g. The varieties also differ in terms of ripening: the first, in late July - early August, Iceberg ripen , Alyosha; a little later (from the beginning of August) Lel and Tsarsky ripen; from mid-August, Favorite, Aquarius, Countess ripen.
But even these wonderful varieties will delight you with a good harvest only on the condition that they are planted in a suitable place for them, and that the trees are carefully looked after.
Seat selection and landing
Apricot varieties Delight
First of all, look: do plums grow in your area? If they grow well, then you can plant an apricot. The place for it should be well protected from the winds by a structure or some kind of solid fence. Low places where cold air flows are unacceptable.
It is best to plant apricots on a small slope - south, southwest or southeast. Dig a deep hole and fill it with soil from a mixture of clay, sand and peat in equal proportions. It is good to add a little rotted manure to this soil. But then, in the first year after planting, do not apply any more fertilizers - their excess will intensify and delay growth, and the plants will not prepare for winter.
Apricots are fertilized according to the general rule - nitrogen fertilizers are applied in early spring, phosphorus fertilizers - in summer. Adjust the amount of fertilizer according to the appearance of the trees: if their growth is very strong and the shoots are very large, then reduce nitrogen fertilizers next year. If growth is weakened, add it. Apply manure only rotted, only in spring or winter, and never in summer.
It is better to plant apricots in spring, but very early, in April, as soon as the ground thaws. The cold ground is not afraid of him. A later spring planting, for example, even in May, is unfavorable for him, since the plants are already beginning to grow. You can plant apricots in the fall. When planting in September, when the tree is still in the leaves, it is necessary to cut off the excess shoots, shorten too long, and cut all the leaves in half.
This will reduce the evaporation of water by the leaves and thereby facilitate the still continuing growth of roots, which will have time to “catch on” to the soil. Apricots can also be planted in late autumn, after leaf fall. But in this case, in some years, depending on the nature of the weather, due to alternating freezing and thawing of the soil, the plant can "stick out" from the ground along with the roots. In the spring, such trees will need to be planted again, but if they are not noticed in time, the roots will dry out and the trees may die.
Apricots varieties Alyosha-1
Like any other crop, the apricot must be watered abundantly when planting. Watering continues in spring and summer. This is due to the fact that the formation of new roots occurs only in moist soil. By the beginning of August, watering is reduced, and later stopped altogether.
Mature apricot trees are watered in May and immediately after harvest, at the end of August. Be careful with watering in August, as it can cause excessive growth, and the shoots will not ripen by winter. Excessive growth of shoots can be stopped by pinching them, while they woody better. However, after pinching, lateral shoots begin to grow, and they also need to be pinched.
Apricot, alas, does not bear fruit every year, and this is due to damage to its flower buds. In the south, they are usually damaged due to early flowering in spring, and in the Moscow region - in winter, and especially if there was an alternation of frost and thaw.
And also apricot trees suffer from bark podoprevanie. Therefore, in no case should their trunks be covered with roofing material, stockings, non-woven material and anything similar in the fall, as we do with other fruit trees. This makes air exchange difficult. But what needs to be done with the trunks and the base of the skeletal branches is to whitewash them. The main importance of whitewashing is to protect the trunks from sunburn, which usually appear in March, but can occur earlier - in February and even January. The tree trunks are whitened in late autumn; it is also advisable to repeat this operation in March.
Whitewashing in May, as many gardeners do, no longer matters. You can whitewash with a purchased whitewash, but with the obligatory addition of copper sulfate: 1-2 teaspoons with a slide of crystalline copper sulfate powder are dissolved in 1 liter of boiling water and whitewash is diluted in this solution.
Apricot pruning - before
Pruning an apricot is a lot like pruning an apple tree, with the only difference that you prune it even more. As in the apple tree, the branches thickening the crown (extending into the crown, parallel, as well as weak, diseased ones) are cut out “into a ring” in the apricot and the strong growths are noticeably shortened.
Often, 3-4 close shoots grow on the top of the cut branch. If you do not thin them, there will be a "whisk". But before thinning out, look at how they are located: if they go sideways - leave two, if up, then one.
And another tip: reduce the crown. Our apricots grow up to 10 m tall, what will you do with such giants?
Apricot Pruning - After
Apricot is very susceptible to viral and fungal diseases. Since this infection largely accumulates in the leaves, a thorough raking of its leaves in the fall and burning them becomes a mandatory technique for caring for an apricot.
They are not suitable for compost.
Of course, you can start an apricot in the garden from a simple sowing of any of its seeds. But what qualities this seedling will have is impossible to predict. Therefore, if you want apricot fruits to be filled with the sweetest juice in your garden, look for varieties of Moscow apricots, plant them carefully and take care of them just as carefully.
That's when you really get your "apricot apples", which real gardeners have dreamed of since the time of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich.
Irina Isaeva, Doctor of Agricultural Sciences,
Photo by the author, www.sad.ru
Read also about apricots:
• These amazing clones of apricots
• Hybrid of common apricot and Manchurian - the basics of agricultural technology
• Black apricot - a hybrid of apricot and cherry plum
• Vegetative propagation of apricot
• Growing a hybrid of plum and apricot
• Plum: the main types and features of agricultural technology
Early apricots begin to ripen in June (usually in the last decade) or early July. Most varieties are delicious fresh and are also suitable for canning.
One of the earliest is the "Prizia" variety. Bright red-orange fruits ripen in the first decade of June! Their taste is excellent. But for cold areas, such a plant is not suitable.
For the central regions of Russia, varieties may be suitable:
- "June". The name is not accidental: apricots of this variety ripen in June, in the 20th. The fruits are small, but very sweet and elegant: yellow with a red side on the sunny side.
- "Pineapple" bears ripe fruits in the first half of July. Apricots are large, juicy, with a small stone. The fruits are well stored and can be transported well.
- The "Egyptian Pharaoh" has been ripening since mid-June. The berries look simply royal: impressive in size (weight reaches 100 g), with a smooth orange skin. The pulp is very juicy and sweet.
- "Kievskiy early" is a variety bred in Ukraine. Differs in early maturity: it yields a harvest already in the third year. The fruits are quite large and tasty.
- New Jersey is an American large-fruited variety. However, he does well during the Russian winter as well. But it requires special care: if you do not apply top dressing under the tree in time, then in the summer it can drop green fruits and leaves.
- "Yubilyar" is a fruitful variety. The fruits are suitable for dessert, jam, and apricot. But the variety "does not like" severe frosts.
Also interesting is the Melitopol early variety, a unique sweet "wine" flavor of the fruit. In addition, it is winter hardy.
I have an apricot of the Krasnoshekiy variety growing at my dacha. So he's probably already 10 years old. It bears fruit perfectly. The tree is huge. It is inconvenient to collect the fruits from the top. The apricots themselves are sweet, juicy. There are so many of them. Previously, they threw away the fruits that fell to the ground. And now I learned how to make jam. Super grade!Nastenka 72
Apricot Red-cheeked, planted with a twig in 2011, in 2013 gave a couple of kg to try. Very much even nothing, tasty, aromatic. Height - about 1.7m. In the landing hole - sand, fine gravel, rotted manure and ash "by eye". And also - in every way - different, which is not a pity ...Gloria52 (Kazan)
Apricot varieties Red-cheeked - a hardy long-liver. If you stop the choice on it and plant only one tree on the site, then you can collect fruits from it for many years. Thanks to the high yield of the variety, even a large family will be able to enjoy fresh, juicy, healthy apricots for almost a month in summer. And you can also make various vitamin jams, compotes and preserves, which with their aroma will remind you of a sultry summer during winter tea drinking with family and friends.
Benefits of the variety
Breeders and amateur gardeners consider "Khabarovsk" a very successful variety. Its main characteristics:
- early flowering and accelerated fruit setting
- fruiting occurs 4-5 years after planting
- high yield
- annual fruit ripening
- average frost resistance
- responsiveness to care
- ability to withstand waterlogging and drought
- tolerance to short-term temperature changes
- resistance to typical diseases of apricots (monoliosis and clasterosporium disease)
- under unfavorable conditions, it can be affected by the moth.
The variety is also popular because of the high taste of the fruit. Ripe apricots are very beautiful, they can be eaten fresh and used for winter harvesting. The keeping quality of the fruits is average; they are not suitable for long-distance transportation.
The plant is winter-hardy, but it does not tolerate frosts below 30 degrees. Young annual shoots are especially affected. For greater safety, seedlings must be planted in elevated areas and must be insulated for the winter.
Among mid-ripening apricots, it is worth highlighting the famous "Red-cheeked" variety, loved by many gardeners. Initially, it was grown in the southern regions of Russia, such as Krasnodar Territory, Rostov Region. But it can also grow in the gardens of the middle zone of the Russian Federation, including in the Moscow region.
Self-fertile, while he himself is an excellent pollinator for other varieties. The fruits of "Krasnoshchekiy" are rather large, bright, with a characteristic reddish blush. The pulp is moderately juicy, with a slight sourness on the palate.
Apricot "Phelps" is also highly valued. Its main advantage is unusually tasty fruits with a special "citrus" flavor.
- "Zaporozhets" is a variety with smallish, but very tasty, ruddy fruits. They tolerate transportation well. The good thing about this variety is that it brings a stable harvest every year. In addition, it winters well.
- The "Russian-Bulgarian" variety is famous for its amazing fruit aroma. Jams and compotes made from such apricots will also smell delicious.
- "Comrade" is a variety with very tasty fruits of good quality.
- "Orlovchanin" is popular due to its high and stable yield, as well as good cold resistance. Its fruits are sour, therefore they are mainly used for canning and drying.
- "Monastyrskiy" is a fairly young variety, unpretentious and frost-resistant. The fruits are sweet and fragrant, yellow-orange in color. The tree is a real giant: it reaches up to 5 m in height.
- "Cupid" is a variety of apricots, which was zoned to the conditions of the Far East. Stunted. Fruits are small, medium juiciness and sweet and sour taste. Amur apricot gives a high yield and is very hardy.
For regions with cold winters, the "Krasavchik" and "Bai" varieties are also suitable.
Apricot "Polessky large-fruited"
Medium-ripening fruits are also very popular in our country. These include:
- Polessky large-fruited
- Crimean cupid
- Red-cheeked and others.
1. Polesie large-fruited. Earlier it was also called Kitaevsky. Medium-sized trees have a dense crown. It should be thinned out periodically. Polesskiy is distinguished by large fruits weighing 55 g. They have a rounded-oval shape. The variety begins to bear fruit at full in mid-summer.
2. Red-cheeked. As for the Red-cheeked apricot, the fruits are medium in size and weigh about 35 g. Egg-shaped fruits with a spout are bright orange in color and taste good.The plant is unpretentious and easily tolerates wintering. The trees are of medium height and a dense, spreading crown.
3. Crimean cupid. Apricot Crimean Cupid is especially popular among gardeners due to its large fruits weighing up to 90 g. They have a pleasant aroma and taste. Fruits are round in shape and with a thin skin can be stored for a long time. They are widely used for recycling.
4. Monastic. Fruit trees are rather large and have a spreading crown. The average weight of the fruit is 40 g. In some cases, their weight reaches 50 g. They ripen at the end of summer. Fruitfulness largely depends on the temperature regime in the region. So, if the summer is hot, then the fruits ripen a little earlier. Trees withstand frost well, which makes them easy to survive the winter. The fruits are used both raw and for conservation. They make delicious jam and compotes.
5. Petropavlovsky. Apricot Petropavlovsky belongs to a large-fruited variety. So, the weight of the fruit can reach 100 g. The plant is not afraid of diseases and easily tolerates harsh weather conditions. The fruits ripen in the middle of summer. They are used to make jams, compote and preserves. They can also be consumed raw.
Features of growing and subtleties of care
The main measures for the care of apricot varieties Russian do not differ from those for most other varieties of apricots. This is moderate watering, timely feeding, weed control, preventive spraying against diseases and harmful insects, whitewashing of trunks and skeletal branches for the winter.
As for watering, it is needed mainly during the growth of fruits. True, young trees that have not yet grown a root system should be watered frequently in the first few years, but not until the water stagnates. Adult apricots, if the summer has not turned out to be extremely dry, are most often quite capable of finding water for themselves.
In arid regions, watering is needed, it is carried out about once a month, with a sufficient amount of water, but so that it does not stagnate in the near-trunk circle. Of course, ideally, it should be warm, settled water, but, in extreme cases, ordinary watering from a hose will do, only if the water does not come from underground sources: this is usually too cold. Watering is best in the morning or evening.
Apricot needs systematic feeding. In the spring, the best option is liquid feeding with infusions of mullein or poultry droppings, which, in extreme cases, can be replaced with urea and potassium nitrate. In June, foliar dressings are useful - spraying the foliage with solutions of complex fertilizers. From the middle of summer, nitrogen-containing formulations must be replaced with phosphorus-potassium ones, they contribute to the formation of fruit ovaries.
After harvesting, half a bucket of wood ash should be scattered around the tree and shallowly buried with a shovel or hoe. Once every few years, in spring or late autumn, small holes are dug near the tree and 1-2 buckets of humus or compost are buried in them.
Apricots tend to overgrow the crown, resulting in strong thickening. The Russian is no exception, he requires regular formative and rejuvenating pruning. In the process of formation, the crown should be given a round shape that is natural for the variety. The first pruning in the life of an apricot was mentioned in the section on planting it. In the next few years, up to 5–8 skeletal branches are formed on the apricot, from which branches of the following orders grow.
Apricots have to be cut not only in spring and autumn, but also in summer. In the spring, you should thin out the thickened sections of the crown, cut out the branches that are weak and frozen in winter. Fruit twigs older than three years are also cut out: the harvest on them will already be small. Spring pruning should be carried out a month before the beginning of the growing season, when frosts will no longer return, but sap flow has not yet begun. Thanks to such pruning, the crown becomes easily accessible to sunlight and reasonable ventilation.
Adult apricots sometimes have to be cut and radically: they rejuvenate from this
In the summer, the thinning operation can be repeated, but only if there is a sufficient amount of moisture (from rain or watering), shortening by a third and overgrowing young shoots. If necessary, you can remove some of the extra fruits or completely unnecessary branches. Summer pruning is beneficial for apricots: flower buds develop better on young shoots. Summer pruning takes place at the very beginning of June. After it, the fruits grow larger and become sweeter.
In the fall, in mid-October, it is necessary to remove weak and diseased shoots, covering large sections with garden pitch. It makes sense to shorten most annual shoots by a third or even more, depending on the strength of their growth. Apricot pruning should be carried out regularly; in its absence, the trees are threatened with the frequency of fruiting. Removing excess branches increases yield and disease resistance.
Preparing for winter
Preparing an apricot for wintering consists in cleaning up all weed residues around it, digging a trunk circle, and prophylactic spraying with insecticidal preparations. A Russian in adulthood hibernates without any shelter, but the trunks of young trees for the winter should be tied with spruce branches, and wrapped on top with non-woven material. Controversy among gardeners is caused by the hilling of the trunks of young trees with earth. On the one hand, this is a warming procedure. But on the other hand, winter thaws will hit the root collar even harder, and its damping off is worse for apricot than frosts.
To protect against rodents, the lower branches and trunk of young apricots must be covered with durable materials, and here, too, thorny spruce branches are the best option. With the arrival of spring, before the start of sap flow, the apricot stems are whitewashed with lime, but such a procedure should, if possible, be carried out even earlier: the most dangerous sun illuminates the trees in March.
Such devices also save from hares.
In the harshest regions, in the first winter, many send apricots under cover of plastic wrap, built in the form of a hut. Only it is necessary not to be late to disassemble such a shelter in the spring.
Unfortunately, the Russian apricot variety has received little attention in the Internet space: for some reason, it is little discussed on forums, and no movies have been made about it. But from the point of view of caring for him, you can focus on any videos about apricots for the middle lane.