Apple variety Vityaz: characteristic and features of cultivation
Among the many varieties of apple trees there are really unusual varieties, and today we will talk about one of them - the Vityaz variety. This apple tree, in addition to good immunity and frost resistance, received a powerful bole and strong branches that easily withstand its abundant harvest. No wonder many gardeners Vityaz resembles a powerful, sprawling oak tree dotted with giant apples.
Variety Origin History
The development of the apple variety Vityaz was engaged in by one of the followers of I. Michurin - the famous scientist-breeder S. Isaev. The work was carried out on the basis of the botanical garden of Moscow State University. Lomonosov. The aim of the selection was to grow a tree with high frost resistance and good immunity to common diseases of this culture. Varieties of apples Anise striped and Pepin saffron were taken as parent varieties.
Check out such winter varieties of apple trees as:
As a result of work, a late winter variety Vityaz with excellent characteristics was obtained. Today it is quite popular in Russia and grows mainly in non-chernozem regions of the country. Despite the resistance to frost, in the north Vityaz is not grown, because in a short summer its fruits do not have time to fully ripen.
Description and characteristics of the apple tree Vityaz
Hero is very distinguished by its appearance among other apple varieties. An adult apple tree from the side is more like a powerful dwarf oak.
Morphology of the tree and root system
The tree of the apple variety Vityaz is stunted, with a dense spreading crown and powerful branches sloping to the ground. The first year after planting, its crown is actively developing, there are many rapidly growing side shoots. And already in the third year of growth Vityaz has a thick hat with thick branches, ready to withstand a bountiful harvest. The shoots of the tree are red-brown, depart from the stem almost at right angles.
Important! If the Hero is grown on a dwarf stock, then the first fruits appear a year after planting. Such a tree will have a height of no more than 2 m and an almost drooping crown with mighty brown branches.
Since the Knight mainly grows in breadth, and not up, it occupies a rather large plot of land. The bark of the tree is smooth, gray in color. The leaves are large, ellipsoidal, dark green, streaked with furrowed veins, with a thick edge on the bottom. The root system of the apple tree is a developed, deep occurrence, designed to nourish such a powerful and fruitful tree.
The fruits of Vityaz are also distinguished by their size and, under favorable conditions, grow to 200 g. They have a round-conical shape, smooth peel and are held on branches by thick stalks. Only apples removed from the tree have a greenish-yellow color with rare reddish stripes. Having matured, they acquire a more saturated “golden” color and rosy “cheeks”.
Varieties of apples are very beautiful and look great on the table. However, it is not worth using them immediately after harvesting, since the variety shows late winter and full taste only by the beginning of December. Then their light creamy, juicy pulp will become sweet, with a slight sourness, without cloying.Vityaz apples retain their commercial qualities almost until May and can be used both fresh and for the preparation of various preserves and confectionery. Professional tasting assessment of apples - 4.8 points out of 5 possible on an international scale.
Productivity, timing of flowering and fruiting
The hero belongs to the late winter fruit varieties, the fruits of which are harvested in early October, and their full maturity occurs by December. The first fruits of apple trees give 3 years after planting in open ground. The variety is characterized by stable and plentiful harvests.
So, one adult tree can bear up to 240 kg of juicy fruits. Hero blooms in large pink and white flowers, collected in loose inflorescences of 5-6 pieces. Flowering - plentiful, takes place around mid-May.
Self-fertility and pollinating varieties
The hero is a self-pollinated variety, i.e., the pollen of the plant independently falls on the pistil. However, to increase productivity, seedlings of other autumn varieties of apple trees are often planted nearby. You can choose "neighbors" to your taste, the main thing is that they bloom at about the same time as Vityaz.
Winter hardiness and disease resistance
High winter hardiness is one of the main advantages of this variety. The apple tree withstands frosts up to a temperature of -40 ° C. At lower temperatures, partial frostbite of the kidneys and young shoots is possible. The hero also has medium resistance to common diseases and pests of fruit crops.
However, with a long cold and wet period, the apple tree can infect scab, therefore, for prevention, it is recommended to treat plantings with special agents that increase the immunity of plants.
Did you know? In total there are about 7,500 varieties of apples, the leaders in their collection are the United States and China. According to statistics, almost half of all fruit trees in the world are apple trees.
Vityaz’s life expectancy depends on the quality of the seedling, apple care and the local climate. Usually in warm regions the tree lives and bears fruit longer than in cold places. On average, the fruiting period of Vityaz is 25-30 years, and the life span reaches 60 years.
Pros and possible disadvantages of the variety
- The hero has many undoubted advantages:
- unpretentiousness in cultivation and care;
- early onset of fruiting;
- high resistance to frost;
- stable high tree yield;
- large, juicy, beautiful fruits;
- high palatability and good keeping quality of apples.
- Among the shortcomings can be noted:
- sprawling crown, the need for a large plot;
- medium immunity to ailments and pests.
Planting and caring for an apple tree
The development of the tree and the quality of the future harvest will depend on the proper planting and good care of the apple tree.
How to choose the right seedling
It is better to buy a seedling from a trusted manufacturer in a specialized store or selection nursery. This guarantees the quality and varietal conformity of the tree.
When buying, pay attention to the following:
- root system - developed, well moisturized, without sticking out dry roots, without signs of disease;
- trunk - smooth, smooth, without damage or growths, with a well-established vaccination;
- leaves - it is better that they were not there, and the kidneys have not yet blossomed.
The right place and date of landing
For the landing of Vityaz should choose a spacious, sunny area with loamy or sandy loam soils of normal acidity. When planting in clay or sour soil, the tree may not take root. Soil deficiencies can be eliminated as follows - to neutralize acidity with lime or nitrate, add friability to coarse-grained sand and organic fertilizers.
Important! The variety is not too picky about the amount of sunlight and feels good even in partial shade. However, strong shading, for example, from a high structure, will have a bad effect on the quality and quantity of fruits.
The site should not stagnate, and groundwater should come close to the surface to avoid root decay. A sufficient level of ultraviolet light will provide the fruit with an excellent taste, and also help to cope with fungal infections and pathogenic bacteria. Planting a seedling is carried out in spring or autumn. When planting in autumn, you need to plant a tree at the beginning of the season so that it has time to take root and adapt to the first frost.
Landing pit preparation
A landing pit should be prepared in advance. Its size should be twice as large as the rhizome of the seedling, and approximately be: diameter - 1 m, depth - 0.9 m. When planting in spring, the pit digs at the end of the growing season, and in the fall - about 30 days before the event. This is necessary so that the earth has time to settle, and the seedling does not move after planting.
Vityaz sapling is planted as follows:
- For drainage (drainage of excess water), a high layer of brick chips or expanded clay is laid at the bottom of the pit.
- A soil mixture is prepared from the top layer of the earth, humus (2 buckets), peat (7 kg), superphosphate (100 g), potassium sulfate (40 g).
- A peg is driven in to maintain the seedling (the first 2 years need protection from strong winds).
- The prepared soil mixture is poured with a knoll, an apple tree is placed on top and covered with soil.
- The hero is abundantly watered with settled warm water, the soil is mulched.
- The next watering is carried out after 2 weeks. For better engraftment of the tree, the first color is recommended to be cut off.
Watering, loosening and fertilizing
To obtain a plentiful harvest, you should take care of regular watering, cultivation and top dressing. Young trees are particularly sensitive to irrigation and poorly developed with a lack of moisture. This is especially negatively reflected in the development of new shoots. Stagnant water at the roots is also dangerous for the apple tree, because it can lead to decay of the underground part of the tree.
Watering the Knight should be regular but moderate. In the hot season, watering is usually carried out once a week for 1-2 buckets of water. It is better to water in the morning or in the evening so that the sun's rays do not burn the bark and leaves of the tree. Before the event, weeds should be removed from the basal circle, and after - loosen the soil.
Experienced gardeners recommend mulching the soil around the tree, this will reduce the number of irrigation needed and protect the earth from overheating. You should also take care of feeding the apple tree. The planted seedling lacks the valuable elements contained in the soil mixture, so the first fertilizing is carried out for the next growing season.
Did you know? In his biography, Steve Jobs, the founder of Apple, recalled that apples were part of his diet and he always noted how funny and soulful the word apple sounds.
Fertilizers are applied in several stages:
- early spring - nitrogen additives (urea, nitroammophoska, ammonium nitrate), which will improve the growth of shoots and foliage, and rotted organic fertilizers (3 buckets of humus per 1 tree) will provide high productivity;
- before flowering - complex mineral preparations that promote abundant flowering and the appearance of the ovary;
- fruit development - it is useful to introduce a solution of nitrophoska and sodium humate (foliar spraying with potassium and phosphorus preparations);
- after harvesting, pre-winter application of potassium superphosphate, which will help the tree prepare for winter.
Cropping and shaping the crown
Pruning is done to remove damaged branches and form a crown. In the first year, Vityaz branches are cut about 1/4 of the length, and the resulting sections are treated with garden var. In the following years, skeletal branches are pruned to a lesser extent, paying more attention to sanitary pruning. It is especially important to prune fruiting apple trees, this will improve quality and increase the amount of yield.The pruning scheme of the apple tree.
Major pests and diseases
To increase the immunity of the tree and protect it from possible ailments and pests, it is recommended to carry out the following treatments:
- early spring - spraying the apple tree and the trunk circle with 3% Bordeaux liquid;
- summer after flowering - wood processing means "Hom";
- fall - whitewashing a tree trunk with a solution of lime;
- late fall - spraying with a 1% solution of Bordeaux fluid.
Tree health also depends on preventative measures such as:
- regular watering and fertilizing;
- annual pruning of branches;
- removal of garbage and damaged parts of a tree;
- protection for the winter.
Harvesting and storage
Harvesting apples of this variety is carried out in early October, after which the fruits are sent for aging, in order to gain their full-fledged taste and aroma. The fruits are harvested together with the stalks, starting from the lower tiers of the tree. When harvesting, try not to deform the fruits and place them in different containers in accordance with the degree of maturity.
For long-term storage, only whole specimens are taken without mechanical damage, then individually wrapped in paper and stacked in clean wooden boxes. You can also sprinkle the fruit with a neutral bulk material - clean sand or peat. The crop is stored in a cool and humid room (temperature - 0 ... + 4 ° С, humidity - 85–95%), it can be a cellar or a cellar.Hero - fruitful, unpretentious, and most importantly - a delicious apple variety. Even one tree planted in a summer cottage can provide a whole family with fresh fruit for almost the entire winter.