The apricot tree (Prunus armeniaca) belongs to the family Rosaceae that also houses the peaches, cherries and blackberries.
The origin of apricot tree is still somewhat uncertain, some researchers claim it to be from Armenia (because of his name Armeniaca), but the vast majority said to have emerged in Siberia and China, but its location of origin within China is totally controversial. It is a very old fruit with a record of more than 5000 years and some people still speculate that the apples of the Gardens of Eden were actually apricots. In addition, it was taken to the Middle East which has become the point of greatest production in the world.
The apricot tree is a small tree, with the height varying between 3 and 6 meters, with a robust trunk and dark brown bark; rounded crown, oval leaves (cordiform) and reddish petiole; flowers white or pink lonely. Its fruit is small rounded, fleshy, with yellow flesh and peel, and maybe more pink or orange.
Currently the apricot tree has basically 3 varieties
European, Asian, and hybrids, and with that, we have white, gray, black, pink, besides yellow fruits. Although it is not very common, it is possible to find fresh fruit in Brazil, even its consumption in dry form is the most common, especially at the end of the year.
Its cultivation requires some care, because as it is a plant of moderate climate, it can suffer with excess of sun mainly in the spring. It requires a soil rich in nutrients and well drained by excess moisture to also affect its production. In Brazil it is very little cultivated, being found only in Rio Grande do Sul and in the colder regions of Minas Gerais .
Benefits of Apricot tree
As stated above, its most common form of consumption is in the dry form, where it concentrates, even more, its nutritional properties. It is a fruit rich in beta-carotene, vitamins A and C, and fiber. In addition to the higher concentration of nutrients in the dry form, we also have an increase in the number of calories, which refers to moderate consumption.
You can consume the fruit fresh or in the form of sweets, jellies, and creams. Essential oils can also be extracted which have antioxidant and moisturizing properties, being excellent for the skin. It is a great help in combating anemia, rickets, malnutrition, liver cirrhosis. It has digestive and diuretic action; and in its dry form, it has a laxative effect. The tea from its leaves by cooking in gargle form fights tonsillitis and pharyngitis.
Even though it has many benefits, some precautions must be taken when consuming the fruit, whether fresh or dry, some preservative substances can develop allergies, such as salicylates that cause reactions to people allergic to aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid). The seed damask when candy is edible, but if it contains a bitter substance that produces hydrogen cyanide is a strong poison.
How to grow apricot tree
1. Apricot tree is a long-lived fruit tree
Generally, one or two-hundred-year-old trees are still productive, and the planned row spacing should be larger. However, taking into account the need for early high yield, temporary plants can be set up when the garden is built, and gradually thinned or transplanted as the tree age increases.
The row spacing of permanent rows can be designed as 4mx6m, and the temporary density garden is 2mx3m. Temporary plants should be processed in time when they are 10 years old. The soil, fertility, and water conditions should also be considered when planning. If the soil is fertile, the soil is deep, and the water source is sufficient, the plant-row spacing should be increased by about 1m. On the contrary, if the soil is barren and dry, the row spacing can be reduced by about 0.5m.
2. When planting
Dig a planting ditch of 1m in depth and width or a planting hole of 1m in length, width, and depth. Add manure at the bottom of the ditch, 30kg-50kg per plant, and plant the seedlings in the middle after backfilling the topsoil. The conventional seedling interface is level with the ground.
The original surface is level with the ground, steadily, irrigate enough water, and buckle a piece of mulch to keep water. Set dry at 60cm, put on a mulch tube, and remove after the leaves are spread. When planting, pay special attention to arranging pollinator trees. Generally, the ratio of main planted varieties to pollinated varieties is 4:1 or 5:1.
Pruning method of young apricot tree
Saplings need to expand the crown as soon as possible. When pruning, the main branches should be cut off moderately. Competing branches, densely packed branches, and whorled branches should be removed. The main branches should be inclined outward and single-headed, and its growth momentum should be maintained.
The remaining branches should be slow. Put, not short. The main branch with an inappropriate angle and direction can be adjusted by pulling the branch. Don’t turn the head easily or change the small one for the big one. The pruning of young trees should be light but not heavy. The main purpose is to accelerate the expansion of the crown, cultivate the tree shape, slow the tree vigor, and enter the fruiting period as soon as possible.
Apricot tree pest control
1. Apricot tree brown rot
Mainly damages the fruit, and also infects flowers and leaves. The fruit can be susceptible from young to mature. In the early stage of onset, the fruit surface appeared brown round lesions slightly sunken, the lesions expanded rapidly, softened, and rotten. In the later stage, the surface of the diseased spots produces yellow-brown velvet-like particles arranged in a round pattern, that is, the conidiophore and conidia of the disease, and the diseased fruit is mostly shed at an early stage.
2. Apricot scab disease
Mainly damages fruits and new shoots. Young fruits have rapid and severe disease. The infected fruits usually produce light brown round spots on the shoulders, with a diameter of 2-3 mm. The lesions turn purple-brown in the later stage, and the epidermis is cork. In severe cases, multiple small lesions are often connected together, but the depth of the flesh is shallow. The lesions on the new shoots are brown, oval, slightly raised, and often runny.
3. Apricot bacterial perforation
The disease mainly damages leaves, but also fruit and new shoots. After the leaves are damaged, the diseased spots are small water-stained spots at the initial stage, and later expanded into round or irregular-shaped lesions with a diameter of about 2 mm. The surroundings are like water-stained spots with a slight yellow-green halo. When the air is humid, the diseased spots There is yellow bacterial pus on the back, a circle of cracks occurred at the junction of diseased and healthy tissues, and the diseased and dead tissues withered and fell off, forming perforations.
4. Apricot scale insects are also called apricot lice.
The main species is Coccoccus koreanum. It is a common pest. The nymphs and female adults are fixed on the branches and the tender bark of the tree trunks, and the bulbs are numerous. Lifelong piercing and sucking juice generally occurs at a high density. Make the tree weak, and the branches wither and die in severe cases.
Apricot tree management after fruit picking
After the fruit is picked, the young and prosperous branches are opened at the corners to ease the tree vigor and promote flower formation. Continue to pinch the new shoots a second time to promote branching and cultivate branch groups. Cut off diseased and insect branches, cross branches, overlapping branches, thin branches, and elongated branches in the crown to reduce tree body consumption and accelerate the formation of flower buds. Apply nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium compound fertilizer once after fruit picking. Combine the fertilization with a deep turn once, the depth is about 20 cm.
It is relatively easy to plant apricot trees. Apricot trees generally enter the fruiting period in about five years. Apricot fruits can generally be eaten fresh or processed into cans for sale. They are very popular. Great economic value!
The fine varieties of apricot trees are mainly the following. Have you ever eaten them?
1. Hongfeng Apricot
The fruit of Hongfeng apricot is nearly round, slightly flat, and the top is flat. The average fruit weight is 55 grams, and the maximum is about 70 grams; the sutures are relatively obvious, deep, and symmetrical on both sides; the fruit surface is bright, the peel is yellow, and two-thirds of the fruit The face is bright and bright red, very beautiful; the flesh is orange-yellow, the flesh is thin, the fiber is less, the juice is more, and it has a fragrance; the taste is sweet and slightly sour, the flavor is strong, the quality is high, and the kernel is bitter. The fruit matures at the end of May.
2. Golden Sun Apricot
Golden Sun Apricot is originally produced in the United States and was introduced to my country in 1993. It is an excellent fresh food variety with extremely early maturity, strong sweet taste, early fruit and high yield.
The golden sun apricot fruit is nearly round, the top is flat, and the fruit is larger. The average fruit weight is about 67 grams; the sutures are shallow and the two halves are symmetrical; the fruit surface is smooth, the ground color is golden, the sun surface is flushed, and the appearance is very beautiful; The flesh is yellow, the flesh is fine and tender, the fiber is less, the juice is more, it is fragrant, and the quality is excellent; the flavor is sweet and the fruit is resistant to cracking.
The fruit ripening period is about 60 days, and it matures in late May. This variety has strong stress resistance, mainly with short fruit branches and strong self-flowering strength; the average yield per plant in the second year after planting reaches 3.5 kg, and the average yield per plant in the third year is 39 kg, the highest 42 kg.
3. Cao Xing
The fruit of Cao Xing is oblate or nearly round, the top is slightly concave, the average fruit weight is 48 grams, the maximum is about 70 grams; the suture is medium; the skin is yellow, the sun is bright red; the flesh is orange, the color near the core is lighter, and the flesh is Thin, less fiber, sweet taste, aroma, and good quality. The fruit matures in mid-June.
4. Camel yellow apricot
The fruit of Camel Yellow Apricot is round, flat on the top, and slightly concave. The average fruit weight is 50 grams, and the largest fruit weight is 78 grams. The fruit has obvious sutures, medium-deep, and symmetrical flesh on both sides. The skin background is yellow-green and the sun surface is red. The flesh is orange-yellow, the flesh is softer, the juice is medium, and the taste is sweet and sour; the core is sticky and the seeds are sweet.
The fruit development period is 55 to 58 days, and the fruit matures in mid-June. The tree is strong, the growth is large, the crown is tall, with a natural round head shape, and the tree posture is open. Strong sprouting ability and strong branching ability; mainly short fruit branches and bouquet-like fruit branches; early fruiting, flowering, and fruiting can be achieved 2 years after planting; high yield, 4~6 years plant yield 5~40 kg; 7 It enters the fruit-bearing period every year, the plant yields 70-100 kg in 7-10 years; the self-flowering rate is 10%.
5. Yangshao yellow apricot
The fruit of Yangshao Huang Apricot is oval, with a flat top and slightly concave. The average fruit weight is 60 grams, and the maximum weight is about 130 grams. The suture is shallow and the two halves are asymmetrical. The peel is orange-yellow, the sun side is flushed, with purple-brown spots. The flesh is orange-yellow, near the core is yellow-white, the flesh is dense, elastic, less fiber, more in the juice, sweet and sour and refreshing, with a strong aroma and excellent quality.
The fruit development period is 70 to 80 days, and the fruit matures in mid-June. It is more resistant to storage and transportation and can be stored for 7-10 days at room temperature. The processing performance is also good, and it is an excellent variety for both fresh food and processing. The tree is strong and half-opened. Both the budding power and the branching power are high, and the short fruit branches are the main ones. The results are early, three years after planting, good yield, ten-year-old trees, the plant yield can reach 40-50 kg, 15-year fruit-bearing trees, the plant yield can reach more than 100 kg, the yield of apricot trees with a century can still reach 150~ 200 kg.
6. Red plum and apricot
People also call Red plum apricot Xinjiang apricot. Apricot is small in size, sweet in taste, good in color, pure in variety, long storage time, not easy to change the taste, rich in nutrition, contains a variety of organic ingredients and vitamins and inorganic salts necessary for the human body, and is a fruit with high nutritional value. Almonds are more nutritious, and apricots have good medical effects.