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Its no secret that deer absolutely hammer apples and crabapples, and we’ll go as far to say there may not be a more effective “draw and hold” to deer than a big grove of them. However, a big orchard of fancy named varieties can be a rather expensive and time consuming chore for the weekend warrior or gamekeeper to undertake…meaning less time and money spent managing the rest of your property when you are busy spraying for bugs and diseases that high end apples often require. To those who can put forth the extra effort and expense to plant and manage the larger, grafted cultivars we applaud you. That being said, we have a solution we believe may be a better option for most wildlife oriented folks, and it’s available in our super stout, yet seedling-sized “wild” crabapple. Our “wild” crabs are actually seedlings from our favorite crabapple selections and wild types such as: Dolgo, Transendent, Chestnut, Centennial, Whitney, and Prairie crab. Having a mixed bag of genetics and drop times from hardy, heavy bearing, disease tolerant favorites in an economical, and simple to establish and maintain rapid mast seedling should be a no-brainer to anyone wanting to spread some apple madness on their place. With our “wild” crabs, combined with tree tubes and a little extra TLC for the first few years of growth, expect flowering and fruiting to occur on some trees in as little as three or four growing seasons, with the remainders putting on heavy crops no later than seven or eight years. So if you’re looking for heavy crops of highly preferred apples dropping from late summer and on into fall, but don’t want to put your county extension agent on payroll, try our “wild” crabs on for size. Zone: 4 - 8 Soil pH: 5.0 - 7.5 Wildlife Value: Excellent. Site Preference: Full sun. Fruit Maturity Date: Late Summer, Early Fall Fruit: Pale green blushed yellow
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Sawtooth Oak-4-6 ft
Type: Cerris Oak (not red or white) Zone: 5 - 9 Soil pH: 4.4 - 7.1 Mature Height: 80' Wildlife Value: Large early dropping, abundance of acorns favored by deer and most all other wildlife. Site Preference: Must have plenty of sun and prefers fertile, well-drained soil to thrive and produce heavy mast crops. Nut Maturity Date: September to October Alias: Oriental Oak, Gobbler Oak Sawtooth oak has been an American citizen for quite some time, and proves itself a winner in our book as the first to provide hard mast for all walks of wildlife. Acorns rain down annually, at a critical time when other oaks haven’t even thought of shedding. Sawtooths are so productive that we can fill the back of a pickup with acorns from three trees! Trail camera folks and early season bow hunters should all agree that sawtooth oak is a winner. Plant a few groves near the cabin or close to your property’s perimeter for a low impact, easy access, and early season “sure thing” hunting spot. Acorns drop from mid-September to mid-October and as early as year six from seed on better sites, but we’ve seen them produce younger than that. This particular seedling comes from a ‘gobbler’ selection which we believe produces a heavier crop than the larger seeded strains.