average economic lifespan of an apple tree #217690 - Ask Extension

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average economic lifespan of an apple tree #217690

Asked October 20, 2014, 4:34 PM EDT

Commercially speaking, what is the average economic lifespan of an apple tree? How many "peak" years could you reasonably expect before production begins to decline, assuming good maintenance? How many years before the tree produces marketable apples once planted, 3-5 years?

Boulder County Colorado

Expert Response

What county are you located so i can direct your question to the most appropriate agent. Thanks!! Ruth
Ruth Willson Replied October 20, 2014, 10:28 PM EDT
Boulder County
The Question Asker Replied October 21, 2014, 11:23 AM EDT
Hi there, the answers to your question vary a great deal depending on the types of trees you choose to plant. Dwarf and semi-dwarf trees will take a much shorter time to produce fruit, but have a shorter lifespan, while standard size trees may take 8 to 10 years to produce, but can live well over 50 years in optimal conditions. Soil conditions and rainfall also play in to the equation. Some would recommend planting a variety of trees so that as your faster growing dwarfs are moving out of their prime, the big standard trees can move into their space and continue to produce well past our lifetimes! If you google your question, there are a lot of interesting threads to follow.
Boulder County Master Gardener Replied October 22, 2014, 3:52 PM EDT

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