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How to Grow Apricots from Seed to Harvest: Check How this Guide Helps Beginners

Apricot trees grow best from grafts and cuttings but will also grow from fresh seeds. Growing an Apricot tree from seed is a simple and beneficial project for an early and experienced gardener. However, the results can be unreliable if you hope to reproduce your favorite tree. Growing an Apricot tree from seed is a fun and easy family project.

How to Grow Apricots from Seed to Harvest
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Save the seeds from any Apricots, but consider starting seeds with a few varieties for some variety. It’s important to know that commercial Apricot trees are usually hybrids, which means that the fruit you buy in the market will likely not be flavourful as the ones you enjoyed eating. 

How to grow Apricots from seed to harvest

How long does it take for an Apricot tree to bear fruit?

  • Apricot trees are perennials, which means they can live for a very long time; Apricots usually live between 40 and 150 years. If the Apricot tree survives for 35 or 40 years, you can expect it to bear fruit for 20 to 25 years. Trees begin to bear fruit by the age of three or four.  
  • Like most fruit trees, Apricots do not bear fruit in the first year after planting. The tree needs a successful bloom period of several months before it reaches maturity. Once your Apricot tree starts to flourish, you can expect it to bear fruit for years. 
  • Apricot trees are grown from seeds that take three or four years to go from the seedling stage to the fruit-bearing tree. To increase the chances of a bountiful harvest, provide your tree with the care it needs. 
  • Although Apricot trees survive for this long time, they usually do not produce fruit for the rest of their lives. Apricots usually bear fruit only for 20 to 25 years. After that, the tree can still be ornamental but don’t expect it to bear fruit regularly.   

Can you grow an Apricot tree from the pit of an Apricot?

  • Growing an Apricot tree is simple if you provide the necessities of an Apricot. It is possible to grow Apricots from seeds, cheap and fun. Growing Apricots from seeds is an easy plan, and in fact, different types of fruit pits can be used to grow trees.   
  • Apricot grows well with stone in fruit, so if you see an Apricot tree in your neighborhood, it is worth getting a piece of that fruit and growing a tree from stone. First, clean any flesh and place the stone on the newspaper to dry for three hours or more.  

Do Apricot seeds need to dry before planting?

  • A little preparation is required before planting Apricot seeds to ensure successful germination. First, clean each pit in cold water to remove sticky, sweet fruit residues. Then allow them to dry the air on a paper towel for a day or two. 
  • To start planting your Apricot seed, choose a delicious mid to late-season variety of Apricots grown from the seed. Clean any flesh and place them on the newspaper for three hours or more to dry. 
  • Prepare the seeds to grow by soaking them overnight in a bowl of room temperature water. Then wrap the seeds in a wet paper towel, place them in a sealed plastic bag, and store the bag in a refrigerator set between 0 to 8°C. Place the seeds in the refrigerator until they sprout, which usually takes one to two months.

In case you missed it: Growing Apricots Indoors in Pots/Containers

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How long does it take to germinate an Apricot seed?

  • Clean the flesh from the ripe Apricot pit and dry it indoors for a few days. You should store the seeds in a cool place for about four to six weeks before expecting your last spring frost. 
  • You should soak the seeds in room temperature water overnight, then bury them in a glass jar or plastic container in damp sand, shredded paper towels, or peat moss.
  • Place the container in the refrigerator at 2 to 10°C degrees Fahrenheit. The best temperature is 8°C. The seed may take one or two months for germination. As the seed embryo matures, you’ll see white rootlets appear. Plant growing seedling is one to two times deeper than the longest dimension of seeds. You should do this after the last expected frost in the spring. 

Can Apricot trees grow in pots?

  • You can grow dwarf Apricot trees in containers. Choose a large pot or tub well-drained, at least 18 inches wide and deep. You should plant trees in a commercial organic potting mix.
  • You should plant the seeds about 6 inches deep or deeper than the length of the Apricot pit and then immediately apply water to settle the soil around the seeds. To protect it from crusting in winter, you can place an inch or two of sand on the soil. Keep the pots in full sunshine.
  • Your Apricot tree can stay in its pot for up to 5 years; remove it from its container, tease some roots, remove some old compost, and repot in the same container that is filling it with fresh compost. 
  • Although you can grow any Apricot as a dwarf, pruning it and keeping it small. Once the Apricot tree blooms, you can expect annual fruits for the next 60 to 80 years or more. They are loyal producers and long-livers, often being passed on from one generation to the next.

Do you need 2 Apricot trees to produce fruit?

  • You don’t usually need two Apricot trees to produce fruit. They are self-fruiting, which is a blessing for the gardener who has a limited amount of space. Fall is the best time to plant your Apricot tree. This gives the tree time to form roots before sending tree into dormancy.
  • Most, but not all, Apricot varieties are self-fertile. Self-fertile Apricot varieties don’t need pollen from another tree to bear fruit, so you only need one tree to get Apricots.
  • The Apricot is self-fruitful; it can be pollened from another flower on the same tree or, in the case of Apricots, by pollen from the same flower. Transferring pollen to different types of the same type of tree is called cross-pollination.

Why is my Apricot tree not fruiting?

  • The lack of fruit production in the Apricot tree may be due to the loss of flowers or young fruits from the season; it may be due to reduced pollination, which can also potentially be affected by the weather; it can be due to damage to trees caused by pests, or it can be a nutritional problem for the tree.
  • If the Apricot tree gets too little or too much water at the time of blooming or during the ripening of the fruit, you may not see the Apricot on the tree. The common reason for the Apricot tree not bearing fruit is a lack of nutrients like phosphorus. Monitoring water and fertilizer can help correct this.

In case you missed it: How to Grow Apples for Beginners: A Guide to Planting to Harvesting

Apricots Fruit
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Do Apricot trees need lots of water?

  • Apricot trees are thirsty plants, and they prefer about an inch of water every ten days to two weeks, provided you plant them in good quality, well-drained soil. An over-watered Apricot tree will show signs of yellow leaves and general droopiness, so you should stop watering it for a while.
  • You should water once every ten days or two weeks. Worse than dry, thirsty roots are filled with water, drowning roots. Trees need an inch of water weekly, especially during blooming and fruiting. Use a drip irrigation system to avoid wet leaves, flowers, and fruits. Make sure your Apricot tree care involves thinning after the fruit once it comes in; thin the fruit by 1 1/2 to 2 inches.

How deep are Apricot roots?

  • Apricot trees thrive well in full sun. Make sure your planting site has enough space for the adult tree to spread its branches and roots. 
  • Apricot trees have a system of shallow roots, so it is better to plant them in wide holes with a minimum access of 25 feet around them. Moreover, it is good to plant them on higher ground, which is less sensitive to damming water and frost.  
  • Almost all of the Apricot root system was located in the first 0.75 meters of soil depth, with 91% in the first 0.50 meters. More than 75% of the roots correspond thin, less than 0.2 millimeters in diameter.

What’s the best fertilizer for Apricot tree?

  • For Apricots, you should use a fertilizer high in potassium and phosphorus and low in nitrogen. Well-composted chicken manure is ideal with worm castings and worm juice. Seaweed solutions are also helpful during the growing period. Apricot trees love potash.
  • You should not fertilize your young Apricot tree in its first year or two. When the Apricot tree starts to bear fruit, you may use nitrogen fertilizer or one that is specific to stone fruit during the spring blooming season. 
  • With well-composted soil, consistent water, and full sun, your Apricot tree will reward you with sweet and juicy fruits for many years. If your tree doesn’t seem to grow at a good rate, 8 to 10 inches of new growth for mature trees, your soil may need to boost light nitrogen.

Should you prune Apricot trees?

  • You should prune Apricot trees in March or early April when the tree is active. Wounds heal faster at this stage, and trees are less liable to be infected with the fungus that causes them to die back. Prune Apricots anytime in the autumn or winter months.
  • You may prune Apricot trees in late winter or early spring as new leaves and flowers begin to bloom. During this period, the tree is actively growing and cutting wounds heal quickly, so there is little chance of diseases entering the wounds. 
  • Apricots bear fruit on spurs, ripened wood that endures for four years. New wood is not forced to grow without regular pruning, and production suffers in later years. The purpose of Apricot pruning is to balance the growth of new wood with maintaining fruit-producing ripe wood.
  • You can prune the Apricot tree in winter and autumn. However, it may be more beneficial to do it in the summer or autumn months when the cuts heal sooner. You’ll need a lot of tools, and it’s essential to keep them clean and sharp. Proper pruning of young trees makes your life easier in future years. 
  • Make a sharp, clean cut close enough so you won’t leave a clumsy stub that’s hard to heal. As intimidating as it may be, don’t discourage the tree’s ultimate size from being small according to your needs. 

In case you missed it: How to Grow Oranges from Seed to Harvest: Check How this Guide Helps Beginners

Apricots Plant
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Why are my Apricots so small?

  • The most common reason for small fruit is overproduction. You must thin the number of fruits per branch to take the larger fruit. There should be only one fruit every 6 to 8 inches.
  • Naturally, they shed fruits if they can so that clusters or other fruits on that branch can grow. However, not every fruit tree is an effective fruit shedder, and although they can drop small hard fruits, the rest of the fruit remains small due to too much competition for resources.
  • Thinning the Apricot is an easy task: gently twist the excess fruit from the branch. Avoid pulling or yanking the fruit, as rough handling can damage the branch. Allow 2 to 4 inches between each Apricot, enough space so the fruit does not rub together at maturity.

How much space does a Apricot tree need?

  • Full-size Apricot trees can be 20 to 25 feet long and wide, so placing them 20 to 25 feet between each plant is better. Apricots are self-fruitful, meaning you only need a tree to get a crop. Even when two or more Apricot trees are planted, cross-pollination cannot occur if the trees are too far away. Because Apricot trees usually have a spread of 16 feet, plant your trees at a distance of 18 to 25 feet to ensure cross-pollination.

What is the best time to plant Apricot trees?

  • Plant young trees in autumn, winter, or early spring. It is better to plant Apricot trees before new growth begins in early spring, before the bud bursts, or before the ground cools in late autumn.
  • Apricot trees are easily grown in the home garden. Take the time to choose the right plantation site with full sun. The tree is 15 to 20 feet tall and does not move easily after it is established. Apricot blooms in early spring, giving the landscape an early color, but the late frost easily spoils the early flowers. Cold protection can protect the fruit and increase production during the late frost after blooms. 

Why are my Apricot tree leaves curling?

  • A problem such as a drought and wind desiccation, or root rot that limits the use of moisture, can sometimes cause the leaves to curl. The leaf curl, caused by the fungus, is primarily a disease of Peaches and Nectarines, although it can also affect Almonds and Apricots. If it is not controlled, it can severely weaken the trees. 
  • Leaf curls can be controlled by applying sulfur or copper-based fungicides labeled as Peach and Nectarine use. Spray the entire tree after 90% of the leaves have fallen and again in early spring, before the bud bloom.

Do Apricots need full sun?

  • Plant Apricots in full sun. They may grow in partial shade, but the yield will be lower than growing in full sunlight. Plant Apricots in well-drained loamy soil. Apricots don’t like wet roots.
  • Your tree will love a sunny place with well-drained, fertile soil. But it will be quite satisfied with six to eight hours of sunlight. Good drainage is needed to keep your trees happy. If your soil is high in clay, add one-third of the peat to the soil at the time of planting.
  • Apricots are best suited for climates with consistently cold winters and short dry springs. They thrive in a climate where winters are so cold that a dormant period is created, and summer is hot but sweltering hot. Choose a sunny location with enough space for the tree to grow. Apricot trees grow best in a full-sun environment.  

In case you missed it: How to Grow Plum Tree/Fruits from Seed to Harvest: Check How this Guide Helps Beginners

Apricots Tree
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What soil do Apricot trees like?

  • Apricot thrives in deep, moist, moisture-free, well-drained soil, ideally slightly alkaline. They will struggle in poor and shallow soil. On light, sandy soil, add organic matter such as garden compost or well-rotted manure to the planting area to improve moisture retention.
  • Apricot thrives in soil with a pH between 6.5 and 8.0. Well-drained loamy soil is the key to your Apricot tree that grows a strong root system, which will help produce large amounts of fruit.
  • Apricot trees work best when they are planted in loamy, well-drained soil. No specific type of soil is needed, but poor soil that does not drain well just won’t cut it. Add agricultural sand if the soil is filled with clay or if it is compacted. The best pH range for Apricot trees is between 6.5 and 8.0. You can modify the soil with a little compost in the plantation process, but that is unnecessary.

What month are Apricots ripe?

  • You should harvest Apricots from late June to August. After the fruit leaves the tree, the color, juice, and texture of the Apricot continue to increase; however, the taste and sweetness do not improve after harvesting. You’ll find out when to visually pick Apricots when fruits change from green to pale orange and feel slightly softened but are still firm to touch. 
  • The Apricot continues to ripen after picking. You must store Apricots at room temperature, away from sunlight and heat, until they gently give a soft touch and have a sweet aroma. Keep the Apricots in the refrigerator to prevent spoilage after ripening, but cold temperatures can change their texture and taste.

How long do Apricots take to ripen on the tree?

  • Flowers appear in early March or February and require a dry season to stay on the tree and produce fruit. Once the Apricot tree matures and blooms, it takes 100 to 120 days for the fruit to be ready for the crop, which usually happens in June or July, depending on your location.
  • Once a small fruit appears on your tree, let it ripen. The Apricot takes up to three weeks to ripe, but patience results in a sweet treat that feels slightly soft to the touch and yellow-orange.    

How do you know when an Apricot is ready to pick?

  • A ripe Apricot will be fuzzy and soft on the outside. It will have deep orange or yellow hue, but you can also see red or pink skin. If it’s light yellow or a slight green tinge on the fruit, put it back on; these are signs of underripe.                
  • Once the Apricots are fully ripe, they will turn brown around the pit within a few days. The last part of the complications of Apricots is that the whole tree is never ready to pick all at once. The average ripening time for Apricots is three weeks.  
  • Pick each fruit individually or with poles, and separate the fruit from the stem. Leave the green Apricot on the tree to ripen further. Be careful when picking and handling Apricots, especially when using picking poles.

In case you missed it: How to Grow Fig Trees/Fruits from Seed to Harvest: Check How this Guide Helps Beginners

Apricots Farming
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Apricot trees are the easiest to grow among fruit trees. With patience and good care, you will have access to juicy fruit in spring and summer. It begins as a small tree and quickly branches into a beautiful arched structure with a sweet-smelling flower blooming after a few years. Apricots are great stone fruits for the home garden.

One is also great for your Apricot tree guild. You may think you live outside the growing range of the Apricot tree, but you may be surprised. It will take a few years for a baby Apricot to set fruit, but if you hang in there, you will eat fresh. Apricots are prolific when it comes to fruit trees. This means it can be easier to grow an Apricot tree.


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