Dwarf Apple Varieties

The dwarf apple tree enables a gardener with limited space to grow an ample crop of apples each year. The small trees are also often used in commercial orchards that offer self picking because their short size enables the public to easily reach upwards and grab an apple for harvest. The dwarf apple tree can be purchased as a single tree variety grafted onto the trunk and root stock or it can be one or two distinct varieties grafted onto the trunk and root stock. A multi-grafted dwarf apple tree has the advantage of being capable of self-pollination with a yield of two or more apple varieties. Any apple variety can be grafted onto dwarf root stock.

Arkansas Black Apple

The Arkansas black apple is available as a dwarf. The apple variety was believed to have first been developed in 1840 by a homesteader in Arkansas named John Crawford, according to the website Orange Pippin. It is believed to have first been developed from a Winesap. The skin of the apple is a deep dark red that only deepens in coloration during storage. The apple offers a fresh, crisp tart flavoring. It stores well for months. The apple can be eaten fresh or used in cooking.


The Cortland dwarf apple is an apple tree that is well suited to the temperature extremes of the northern states and Canada. The apple variety was first developed around 1915. It was derived from the McIntosh apple. Eat the Cortland apple shortly after harvest because it does not store well. When first picked the apple is sweet and tasty. After slicing the creamy flesh does not turn brown very quickly which makes it an excellent cut apple for snacks. The skin of the Cortland apple appears red with a slight flushing.


In the 1930s Japan developed the crisp, sweet Akane apple tree. It was derived from the Worcester Pearmain and the Jonathan apple varieties. The apple is a garden favorite in the United States and is widely grafted onto dwarf root stock so it can flourish in even the smallest garden. The Akane grows best in warmer climates where it will not get hit by a late season frost. It is widely used as a dessert apple due it its tart flavor. A red-fleshed apple, the Akane can be stored when the temperature is kept above 28 degrees Fahrenheit. For the best flavor it should be promptly consumed, however.

Bramley's Seedling

The Bramley's seedling apple was first developed in 1809 when Mary Ann Brailsford first planted tiny pips in her yard in Southwell, Nottingham. She would later sell her residence to Matthew Bramley. Official cultivation would begin in 1856, according to the website Garden Action. The apples are green in appearance and used widely in cooking. The tree is considered a triploid which enables it to be moderately self-fertile. It is widely grafted onto dwarf root stock so even gardeners with a very small yard can enjoy it. Once harvested the apples store well.

Keywords: growing dwarf apples, dwarf apple trees, dwarf apple varieties

About this Author

Kimberly Sharpe is a freelance writer with a diverse background. She has worked as a Web writer for the past four years. She writes extensively for Associated Content where she is both a featured home improvement contributor (with special emphasis on gardening) and a parenting contributor. She also writes for Helium. She has worked professionally in the animal care and gardening fields.