My, this fall, budded apples did well and are growing away nicely, thanks all for the encouragement and education. They are in 5 gal. buckets, should I plant them, heel them in, or leave them in their buckets and get them some place sheltered for the winter. My basement is too warm, 55+ and other shelter areas maybe to cold, ambient temps. your help is appreciated.
I’d think this fall would be a perfect time to plant them in their final resting place.
Plant them NOW. Keep them watered once a week until dormancy. They should be able to “harden off” in time for winter.
Second best option is to find storage that doesn’t get below 34 F (but colder than 55 F).
Plants heeled in or potted outside may not survive the cold of a Zone 5 winter.