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How to Grow an Apple Tree From Seed | Apple Tree Propagation From Seeds

Know how to grow an apple tree from seed at home and apple seed germination from the details given below. The apple tree grown from seeds takes from 4 to 8 years to bear fruit. However, apple trees don't come true to the type from seeds, means that the tree from the seed will produce apples that will be different than the parent. The seed grown apple plant may be usually inferior to the parent tree.

Apple Tree
Apple Tree

Propagation of Apple Trees By Seeds

The apple tree can be propagated from seeds and cuttings. Here, I will detail the process of growing apple tree from seeds at home. For growing apples from seeds, follow the following fastest method of growing apples from seeds. I germinated and planted Red Delicious Apple seeds, but the process is the  same for all types of apples including Gala, Pink lady, Fuji, Empire, Granny Smith, Golden delicious, Honeycrisp, Envy, Jazz, etc.

Start growing apple from seed in early winter so the seedling is ready to be planted in spring to summer.

Buy fully ripe apples of a variety of your choice from the store and remove their seeds. It is important to note that only fresh seeds will germinate.

Apple Seed Germination

The fastest way to germinate the apple seeds is to wrap them in a damp kitchen paper towel and place them in fridge for stratification. 

Apple Seed Stratification

The apple seeds need correct stratification procedure to simulate conditions suitable for seeds to sprout. Stratification encourages the embryo inside the seed to start germinating. The seeds require a chill time of up to 3 months to break the dormancy before they will sprout. Storing the seeds in moist, cold conditions is called stratification.

Note that if the apple fruits in store have come from cold storage, then stratification may not be needed, so you can directly plant the seeds in soil, but it is better to stratify the seeds before sowing in soil so you do not fail.

  1. Wash the apple seeds and air dry them for 2 days.
  2. Soak the seeds in water for 24 hours to soften the outer hard covering. Throw away any floating seeds after 24 hours as these are not viable for germination.
  3. Take a kitchen paper towel and place the soaked seeds on it. Fold the paper to enclose the seeds and spray some water. Enclose the folded paper in a Zip lock bag or wrap in a polythene sheet. This creates high humidity needed for seed germination.
  4. Place the bag in refrigerator.
  5. Open the bag and check the seeds every 2 weeks to see if the apple seed germination has started. Change the paper if mould develops, also throw away any seed that has developed fungus.

The question is how long will it take for an apple tree to sprout? The seeds will take 1 to 3 months to sprout depending on the variety. It is important to note that only fresh seeds will germinate, the older seeds will take longer to sprout then the fresh ones.

Apple Seed Germinated
Germinated Apple Seed

Planting Sprouted/Germinated Persimmon Seeds in Soil 

Next step is to plant the sprouted seed in soil.

  1. Take a small pot or tray having several holes for drainage of excess water.
  2. Prepare soil mixture by mixing some river sand or perlite in potting mix or seed raising soil mix and fill in the pot. The river sand makes the soil fre-draining. You can use seed raising soil readily avaialble from garden shops.
  3. Put the sprouted seeds about 1 inch below the soil and water. Keep the pot in shade at a warm place. Keep the soil damp.

The seedlings will emerge in a few days. Ensure that the soil does not dry when the seedlings emerge.
Apple Tree Seedling
Apple Seedling

Move the pots of seedlings to direct sunlight, preferably in a greenhouse or expose them to morning sun only for a week.

When the seedlings grow to about 4 inch high, you can transplant them in well-draining soil in your garden in a sunny spot


How to grow apple tree from seed Video