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Snowdrift crabapple features rounded shape, dense leaves, and is a vigorous grower that is excellent for residential settings, parks and open spaces.

Tree of the Month: Snowdrift Crabapple

By Len Phillips, ASLA Emeritus





All photos provided by J. Frank Schmidt & Son Co.

Trade Name: Snowdrift Crabapple

Botanical Name: Malus ‘Snowdrift’

Family: Rosaceae

Parentage: Native

Year of Introduction: 1975 introduction from Cole Nursery

Height: 15 to 20 feet

Spread: 15 to 20 feet

Form: Rounded, dense

Flower: Single, pink buds, white when open, abundant, over 1-inch diameter

Fruit: Orange-red, 3/8-inch, persistent

Foliage: Dark green, lustrous, heavy texture

Spring Color: Covered with white flowers in early spring

Summer Foliage: Rich light-green darkens with age

Autumn Foliage: Yellow and orange contrast nicely with red fruits

Winter Color: Persistent red fruits on dark twigs

Bark: Dark brown or gray

Habitat: Does very well throughout the United States

Culture: Well drained soil, acidic, partial shade is preferred

Hardiness Zone*: 4 – 6

Growth Rate: Medium, full size in 25 years

Pest Resistance: Excellent resistance to Cedar-Apple rust and Mildew, good resistance to Scab but not to Fireblight

Storm Resistance: Good

Salt Resistance: Good

Planting: Fibrous roots allow any transplanting technique, including bare root, in spring only

Pruning: Prune at planting and three years later to mature form

Propagating: Budding, grafting, softwood cuttings in summer

Design Uses: Excellent for residential, park, open spaces, and under utility wires

Companions: Does well with most perennials and other crabapples

Site Requirements: Likes most sites, most soils, and full sun

Other Comments: Rounded shape, dense leaves, vigorous grower, suitable for CU-Structural Soil planting

Available From: Most nurseries, one of the most popular crabapples


* For information about the USDA Hardiness Zone Map, visit www.usna.usda.gov/Hardzone/index.html


These are the personal observations of the author, living in New England – Zone 5b. Len Phillips can be reached via email at lenphillips@on-line-seminars.com

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