Do Apple Trees Bloom or Leaf First?

Written by beth anderle | 13/05/2017
Do Apple Trees Bloom or Leaf First?
Apple blossom time begins in late spring. (Hemera Technologies/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Apple trees go through a specific cycle every year. Even when it looks like nothing is going on, the tree is preparing itself for the next year's harvest.

Budding

Do Apple Trees Bloom or Leaf First?
Blossoms emerge in spring from buds formed the previous summer. (apple tree blossom buds image by Alison Bowden from Fotolia.com)

The life cycle of the apple tree begins in the summer. Small buds form on the tree's branches. These buds are not a part of the apples for the harvest season that year.

Dormant Season

Do Apple Trees Bloom or Leaf First?
Dormant apple tree in winter with a few remaining fruit. (apples in winter image by Marina Shinkaruk from Fotolia.com)

During fall, the buds grow a fuzzy covering. This coating protects them through the winter dormant season.

Spring Leafing

Do Apple Trees Bloom or Leaf First?
Apple leaves in the spring. (apple-tree bud 2 image by Alex White from Fotolia.com)

In the spring, buds shed the protective coating and develop into bunches of leaves. At the centre of each cluster of leaves a small flower bud forms.

Blossoms and Fruit

Do Apple Trees Bloom or Leaf First?
A branch of a blossoming apple tree. (Apple Blossoms image by valleymiss from Fotolia.com)

The flower bud grows and blossoms in late spring. Once the blossoms are pollinated, they develop into apples.

Harvest

Do Apple Trees Bloom or Leaf First?
Apples ready for harvest. (apple harvest image by Bionic Media from Fotolia.com)

The apples mature and are ready for harvest in late summer to fall. By this time, buds for the next spring have already begun to grow on the branches and the cycle begins again.

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