Q. Before I plant my apricot tree this spring, I would like to know how much space I should allocate for it. Does a Blenheim apricot lend itself to close pruning?
A. The size of an apricot tree depends on the variety and what roots it is growing on. An apricot on its own roots can be quite large, over 20 feet tall and quite a bit more. When a variety is grafted onto a rootstock there is usually some dwarfing that goes along with that. Although in the case of apricots the rootstock is not usually chosen for its dwarfing characteristics.
|Gold Kist apricot on Nemaguard rootstock kept at 6 1/2 feet|
for the past 17 years with very little pruning each year
The amount of space you allocate for your apricot depends on how you manage it. We keep all of our apricots at the orchard at 6 ½ feet in about 7 feet wide all of their lives. This size control is mostly done by pruning. You can do this with any apricot but some stay naturally small more than others.
An excellent selection is Gold Kist apricot grafted on Nemaguard rootstock. This apricot on this rootstock stays naturally small and provides very high quality fruit.