Apple Tree From Seed

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As a "teachable moment" with my little kids, I we put some seeds from some apples we ate in a planter. Now, 6 weeks later, some appear to have sprouted. Will these do well here in the DC area?
Thanks.
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Probably if your children live to a ripe old age?
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BetsyB

"Buck Turgidson" <jc snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com> wrote in message
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Plant them. They wont be the same kind of apple that they came out of, but will revert to the kind of fruit that the rootstock came from. They will still bear fruit, normally within 4 to 6 years. In any case they kids will be proud of what they accomplished.
Dwayne

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Dwayne,
I generally agree with you about the bad results from planting an apple seed. However, I disagree that it will have any relationship to the rootstock, assuming the original tree that grew the apple was grafted onto that rootstock. The rootstock does not transfer it's genetic material to the resultant apple. What spoils this apple planted from seed is that it is affected by the pollinator and all the recessive genes built into that seed. I think what you are confused about is when a branch grows out of the rootstock below a graft and starts producing apples. In that case, the resultant apple would have the characteristics of the rootstock.
Sherwin D.
Dwayne wrote:

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Buck Turgidson wrote:

The fruit will probably be awful, but it will be edible. (and it might be good for jelly, or for pickles, or cider.)
Worst case, it takes 10 years for the trees to bloom, the fruit is nasty, and you can graft a good variety onto the big branches and convert it to a good tree. Best case, you discover a wonderful new apple variety and you can name it.
Best regards, Bob
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zxcvbob wrote:

Don't get his hopes up. The chances for a good apple emerging from a planted seed are very small. That being said, there are some very famous apples like the Cox's Orange Pippen that originated from a seedling. The very word pippen means seed. That was a very chance occurance, and most orchardists don't waste their time trying to develop new apples from seedlings.
Sherwin D.

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They can grow allright, but don't expect the resultant apples to taste anything like the apple the seeds came from. It's a genetic thing. The resultant apples are some combination of the original tree and whatever pollinated it. Almost always, the resultant apples taste terrible. Instead, you should teach your kids how to propagate apple trees by grafting techniques. Check the web for more information.
Sherwin D.
Buck Turgidson wrote:

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Not to be irreverent or irrelevant, but
If John Chapman could read this thread he would turn over in his grave. He considered grafting to be "absolute wickedness" according to some accounts. BTW his grave is located in Fort Wayne IN somewhere near his memorial which is located in the park and is accessible from the rear of the parking lot of the Ft. Wayne Memorial Coliseum. It is on a mound surrounded by an iron fence. The stele at the gravesite reads,
"In fond memory of John Chapman, endearingly known as "Johnny Appleseed These grave-site improvements were provided by The Men's Garden Clubs of America and The Johnny Appleseed National Memorial Foundation, Inc. September 25, 1965"
There is some dispute as to the actual burial site but most historians believe it is at least within 50 feet of the corrrect location based on accounts recorded from eyewitnesses at his burial in the old Archer Cemetery in March 1845.
A few people in Ohio and Indiana believe they still have a Johnny Appleseed Tree on their property and tourists can buy Johnny AppleSeed Tree. But the last known surviving Johnny Appleseed tree is located on a farm near Nova, Ohio, some 50 miles west of Akron. The fruit is said to resemble the Albemarle Pippen and they will sell you cuttings.
Olin
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Olin wrote:

As I mentioned in another posting, John Chapman's contribution was to provide
a source of fruit to remote farmers and settlers, who would otherwise not have any access to apples. These apples were ok for making cider or feeding the animals. The cider was necessary to provide a nutritious drink in the Winter
months, when there was no substitute.
Chapman was certainly an eccentric, possibly driven by religious fervor, but as I have explained, he did contribute to the promoting of fruit growing in this country.
If you worry about John Chapman turning in his grave, give a few thoughts to Sir Issac Newton, who's theories were a great contribution, but were found to be not applicable to all facets of our universe.
By the way, in doing some surfing about Chapman, I came across this interesting site about growing apples from seeds:
http://www.pollinator.com/appleseeds_faq.htm
Sherwin D.
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It may depend on the winter ahead of you. Plants in planters tend to experience much colder winter temps than those in the ground. And planters tend to be either over- or underwatered. Which is a long way of saying look first for yourself next spring, if you think the kids will be badly disappointed if they apple seedlings didn't make it.
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Sure, the little saplings ought to grow into healthy young trees, which will do fine in the DC area -- IF you can get them through this first winter.
It's probably too late to "harden them off" sufficiently to leave outdoors. Nonetheless, it would be a good idea, as long as the weather remains above freezing, to put them in separate pots (with a generous amount of space for young growing roots) and leave these outdoors exposed to the elements. This will produce stronger and tougher saplings than leaving them in an inside window.
The best thing for the coming months would probably be a cool greenhouse, or perhaps a sunny window in an unheated basement. Failing that, you'll have to try with an ordinary sunny window, preferably not in a spot near a heat outlet or radiator. Unnatural heat, coupled with dim indoor light, is a bad combination that encourages weak, lanky growth.
In that regard also, you should avoid giving them too much fertilizer, and especially fertilizer with a high nitrogen (N) content -- the first number in a fertilizer formula like 15-10-10.
If you've got a LOT of seedlings, you might do well to select a small number to pamper through the winter. In cases like this, I used to let each kid pick ONE plant as his or her own. They could decorate the pot, and they were nominally responsible for caring for the plant (though in practice I mostly took care of this, for the plants' sake).
Next spring, if all goes well, you can reverse the process -- when the weather begins to warm, gradually begin introducing the plants to the wild, until they acclimate to the stronger sunlight and harsher weather conditions. Remember when you finally plant them to allow plenty of room to grow. It will be great fun for the kids as the years go by -- IF we can pull through the few months ahead.

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Wundern kann es mich night, das unser Herr Christus mit Dernen
Gern und mit Sndern gelebt, geht's mir doch eben auch so.
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Why put all this effort into an apple tree that will produce lousy tasting apples. I mean, isn't growing an apple tree for the apples the main objective of all this? Put a little extra effort into doing a graft in the spring of a known variety. Grafting is really not that difficult. Various clubs and institutions teach it or you can learn how to do it from books, or the web. If you just want to see if you can get apples from seeds, you probably have to wait at least 7 years to see one. By then, the kids will have gone on to other endeavors. If they graft an apple tree to a dwarf rootstock, they might see some apples in a much shorter time. I have had apples appear only two or three years after grafting them onto dwarf rootstock. Standard trees, like those grown from seeds, take much longer to bear fruit.
As in life, with apple trees there are few good shortcuts or quick fixes.
Sherwin D.
kaspian wrote:

I bury my pots in the garden to keep the soil inside them from freezing.

They really don't need sunlight, as they go dormant in the winter months.

Especially if they are planted from seeds. They will produce full size apple
trees, over 20 feet, which are a pain to maintain and harvest. Another reason to make the trees on dwarfing rootstock that can be as small as 6 feet high.

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I really don't think the OP's goal here is to grow apples. As I read it, the goal is to grow children's minds. For that purpose, planting seeds from apples is an ideal activity.
Jo Ann
sherwindu wrote:

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You're sure about that? cv Delicious was a chance seedling (and they're very nice apples when they haven't been subjected to storage!) Likewise, most of the heirloom apples are chance seedlings, and I'll take a Cox's Orange Pippin or an Arkansas Black over a Fuji any day.
Kids enjoy having their own plants... or at least I sure did. Kay's Pear, while it never produced world-class commercial fruits, produced acceptable home fruit, and it was *mine*. And I've gotten some very good no-name apples out of local roadsides, probably planted by birds.
Sometimes, especially when you're a kid, it's nice to go against the flow of uniformity and find out what happens in an uncontrolled experiment.
Kay
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Kay Lancaster wrote:

Couldn't you just surreptitiously swap the seeds for known, 'quality' cultivar seeds?
Carl
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to reply, change ( .not) to ( .net)

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Carl 1 Lucky Texan wrote:

You missed the point. The resultant apple will have the genetic makeup of some
recessed genes, and will not resemble the original apple, no matter what. You can't faithfully reproduce apple trees from seed, and in most cases, not even come close. Leave it at that.
Sherwin D.

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Please, please... pick up a good basic genetics book and do some reading. "Recessed genes"? You think they're on holiday break? Better yet, a good basic plant breeding text sounds like it needs to be on your list.
There are some really interesting issues in apple genetics, including ploidy levels, polygenic inheritance and a tendency to "bud sport". In fact, it's fairly common to find an oddball branch on a grafted tree, clearly tissue grown from the graft, but with different fruit characters from most of the rest of the tree. Chimerism and mosaicism have played an important part in the development of a lot of tree fruit cultivars.
Genetic diversity isn't something to be scorned...
Kay
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Kay Lancaster wrote:

I think you are the one that needs the textbooks. Read on ...

I am not pretending to be a biologist or a plant geneticist. However, I do know a solid layman's idea of how apple trees propagate. The term recessive gene is not my invention but is part of the laws of Mendelian inheritance created by Gregor Mendel. If you have a problem with that, take it up with him.

It's so common that I have never seen one in my 20 years of growing apples, visiting numerous orchards, or just talking to fellow apple growers.

What you call oddball I have only observed in very small variations in size, color, and taste of the apple. I am not familiar with any radically different apples appearing suddenly on just one branch.

U. of Minnesota describes mosaicism as: 'Mosaic variegated aneuploidy (MVA) is a rare recessive condition'. Evidently they think that it's ok to use the term recessive.

We are not talking here about genetic engineering! This is simply about the natural genetic effects of planting an apple seed. This kid planting an apple seed is not going to take it to his laboratory to do high tech genetic engineering!
Sherwin D.

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I have no problem with the notion of recessive genes, but you wrote "recessed genes" and also seemed to have no real grasp of some of the other issues of apple genetics.
Furthermore, recessive genes probably aren't at the heart of variation in apples.

It's pretty common. If it weren't so late in the season here, I could probably find several branch sports on apples within a mile or so of my house.

Mosaic variegated aneupoloidy is different from mosaicism. An organism exhibiting mosaicism has patches of cells with a different genome than other patches of cells. Mosaic Variegated Aneuplody Syndrome is a rare genetic disorder of humans, causing mitotic non-disjunction of cells, leading to groups of aneuploid cells (cells with the wrong numbers of chromosomes.) If this is the page you looked at: http://www.cancer.umn.edu/research/programs/peccc/c3dec04.html it ain't about apples.

Who said he or she was? Find another strawman. I'm done.
Kay
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Kay Lancaster wrote:

Here we go with the old semantics attack. If you can't win an argument on substance, attack someone on their use of language. You can hypothesize all you want about my abilities, but I question yours, as well. I don't need to have to have a degree in biology to know that there are certain traits carried over in various generations of apples, as well as other living matter. Exactly what other issues of apple genetics are you referring to? Your theories about how easily apples can mutate into something desirable is way removed from reality. I suggest you stick with your plums, where you may have some stronger arguments.
I think that in this case, one can learn more about apple growing by experiencing it first hand, rather than burying oneself in a lot of textbooks, especially those on genetics. However, I do read books, surf the net, and review articles to keep up with the latest information on apple growing. I am not a research scientist or a genetic engineer trying to develop new varieties of apples.

They certainly are when you try to reproduce an apple by planting it's seed.

I don't believe you.

No, I didn't look at that page.

You are the one that went off on a tangent of genetic engineering, not me. I simply stated that you cannot expect an apple planted from seed to have the basic characteristics of the parent apple it came from. Do you still want to dispute that!
In talking with a fellow apple grower today, he told me that he had heard from several sources that the odds of getting a decent apple from a planted seed was about 1 in 10,000. Now if
you are talking Prunus ( peaches, plums, apricots ), this is not the case, as those plants are better genetically capable of passing on their traits through their seeds.

I certainly hope so. I'm getting tired of trying to put certain ideas people have about growing apples into the proper perspective. If you are an academic or genetic expert, you shouldn't push your credentials in people's faces, especially when you mislead them about the real world.
Sherwin D.

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