Next year planting advice

This time of year is when I start thinking about what I want to get next spring and where I’ll plant it. I’m thinking about getting 2-3 new apple trees. I currently have Liberty, WP, Freedom, Enterprise, and Novamac doing well in an area on my property that has rich soil and is about 50’ from and 2’ above a stream. My only place to expand is toward the stream, where I have a step down in elevation to <1’ from the stream surface. About once every summer I get a big enough storm that this area gets maybe an inch of standing water for a few days. In the winter when the ground has frozen out there I also get occasional standing water from snowmelt. I do have a wild crabapple even closer to the stream that appears to grow well.

I’m looking for folks’ advice on whether a day or two of standing water every once in awhile is problematic, or if there’s a rootstock that might be better suited for the area. Thanks!

Mound the plantings.


Use swamp crabapple for a rootstock, as it is supposed to be more tolerant of water exposure.


i agree. mounds or raised beds are the only way i can get fruit trees to grow well in my heavy, rocky clay. once the roots get enough air they grow great with little inputs from me. a good layer of mulch keeps them from drying out in hot dry weather. as the tree matures the mound slowly breaks down and is all but gone by year 4-5.