We have in stock both dwarf and semi-dwarf trees. The dwarf trees produce very quickly and are very productive. They are small enough to be espaliered or trellised in back yard plantings. Although the trees are dwarfed, the fruit is full size. The rootstock we use for the full dwarfs is M9, the most popular rootstock in the world. All dwarf trees need some additional support to keep them from blowing over in high winds.
Our favorite semi-dwarf rootstock is M7, which is a favorite worldwide. It makes trees slightly larger than M9 that need no support (they are “free standing”). We also use M111 on trees that need additional vigor, such as Red Delicious, and M26 as a substitute for M7.
The main purposes of the dwarfing rootstocks are to keep the size of the trees manageable and to achieve early production of fruit ( a year or two). Seedling trees (those that are not dwarfed) may take 7 years to start fruiting and grow very large, requiring ladders for harvesting the fruit. They are seldom planted today and belong to our grandfather’s generation. Those orchards that produce the largest amount of fruit per acre are from dwarfed trees.