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  • Malus John Downie Tree
  • Malus John Downie Tree
  • Malus John Downie Tree
Carefully Packaged UK Grown Trees

Malus John Downie Tree

Flowering Crab Apple Trees

from From £49.99 (VAT Free)
( £49.99 (ex. VAT) inc. VAT)

This tree is one of the very best Malus varieties for crab apple jelly due to the size, flavour and pectin level of its fruit. John Downie produces a mass of large, plum-like, red and yellow flushed apples that mature early but last well into the winter. In April-May, a blanket of white flowers open from pink buds which are very popular amongst bees, making it a useful pollinator for apple trees. Foliage is mid-green with good autumn colour in fiery shades of yellow, bronze and orange.

This small tree has an upright habit when young and arches in maturity, reaching an estimated height and spread of 5 x 3 metres in 20 years. This Flowering Crab Apple, as it’s more commonly known, is suited to most conditions but thrives in moist, well-drained soil. A really beautiful tree that is deservedly popular.

This variety of Malus has large crab applies, ideal for culinary purposes, and is therefore sold with zero VAT.

AKA Crab apple, Flowering crab, Flowering crab apple, crabapple, Malus John Downie

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Variety Root Type Height Now Form ? Price Qty Basket
Malus John Downie Tree Malus John Downie Tree
10L pot 150-200cm Pruned & Shaped £49.99 (VAT Free)
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Delivery timescales

99% of deliveries made within a week of placing the order (other than agreed pre orders) and many are despatched on the day we receive the order.  There is a slightly longer delivery timescale on trees over 2.5m in height (all the trees called Standard, Premium Standard, Heavy Standard or Extra Heavy Standard, all called Mature Trees) because normal "next day" carriers find them too large to handle so we have to group orders together into geographic areas for a haulage contractor to deliver and this all takes a bit of scheduling (but it's worth it when you see these wonderful mature trees!). 

Gift trees required for arrival on a specific date (or indeed any tree required for delivery on a specific date) can be accommodated with pleasure and at no extra charge - we normally plan to deliver a day or two before the special day just to be on the safe side and although we really don't like to give ourselves wriggle room (because we so rarely need it!), we do have to say that we accept no legal responsibility for late deliveries.

Bare root trees and fruit bushes can only be dispatched from mid-November - mid April/late April (depending on weather conditions) and whilst they are dormant.

The vast majority of trees are sent on a 'no signature required' basis, so there's no need to be in to receive your order unless we contact you (normally just the most mature trees where the driver may need help getting the tree/trees off the vehicle).  You can give us instructions on where to leave your delivery either via the checkout or send us a separate email.

Trees are packed very carefully by our experienced team and delivered using couriers who've been tried and tested over many years.

Our nursery is a busy despatch centre and therefore customers need to make an appointment to collect or view trees.  For collections despatch charges will be refunded.

Delivery costs

Orders for our popular range of 1.5/2.0m height trees to UK mainland ex Highlands have a delivery charge of £9.95 plus vat (Highlands charge will be applied in the check out).  Smaller trees/bushes are charged at £6.95 plus vat (again Highlands charge applied in the check out).  On orders for several trees, delivery costs increase to £12.95 (and honestly that doesn't nearly cover what it costs us in cardboard and carriage charges!) but you can buy several trees (or hundreds of trees if you wish) for the same delivery cost.  Highlands charges start to get a bit expensive if you require several trees which our customers in the Highlands will be well aware of - we wish we could help more but you're such a long way from Yorkshire!

Mature trees are more expensive to deliver and cost varies by postcode but again you can buy more than one tree for the same delivery cost so if you do need 2 or more, and particularly if you are planting a good number of trees, it works out to be really economical.  Delivery costs are calculated automatically in the shopping trolley so try adding an extra tree or bush for no extra delivery charge.

Northern Ireland, Channel Islands and overseas destinations

Our courier charges are not viable for just one or two trees but if you have a larger requirement please do speak to us and we'll do what we can to get trees to you at a reasonable cost.

Planting Advice for Flowering Crab Apple trees

When planting flowering crab apple trees, such as Malus John Downie, it is important to prepare the planting area well. Pot grown Malus trees can be planted at any time of the year. Bare root crab apple trees need to be planted between November and March. If you are not planting your bare root crab apple tree straight away, it is best to ‘heel in’ your tree. Dig a hole in an unused area of soil and pop the roots of the tree in, gently firming around. If you’re planting within a couple of days, you can untie the bag around the roots, water, re-tie and then store in a frost free garage or shed.

Whether planting a pot grown or bare root crab apple tree, you will need to carry out the following to prepare your planting site. Firstly, remove all weeds and grass within a metre of your desired planting hole then dig a hole as deep as your root mass and approximately 2-3x as wide. We recommend digging a square hole as this encourages the roots to grow straight, as opposed to around inside the hole. To help your tree establish more effectively, we advise applying root grow (sprinkle in the hole for pot grown trees or prepare and apply the gel mixture for bare root trees), especially if you have poor soil. Gently loosen the roots and place into the planting hole.

Using 50% of the original soil and 50% compost, fill in the hole and firm around gently. Make sure not to bank the soil up around the collar of the tree as this can cause problems. To see how to use a tree stake and tie, watch our informational how to videos.

Aftercare Advice for Malus John Downie

If you’re planting in dry weather, water well and regularly for the first few months. The same goes for spring and summer planting. Make sure to keep an eye on your young tree and increase watering if there are extended periods of warm or dry weather. If you’re planting in autumn, you may only need to water your tree a little. We also stock a range of irrigation kits, suitable for a variety of planting schemes.

Once planted, it is important to keep the area free of competing weeds and grass for the first couple of growing seasons. Using a glyphosate based weed killer or installing mulch matting and bark chips will aid in this. Do not simply mow the grass around the area as this will only encourage it to grow more vigorously. If you know your area is prone to rabbits, we would advise using a rabbit guard.

Pruning Advice for Malus John Downie trees

Flowering Crab Apple trees can be pruned in winter. They do not require hard pruning and you should not trim the tips of crab apple branches. Simply remove any dead or damaged branches and shoots at the base of the tree i.e. suckers and water sprouts which redirect energy resources from the main stem but do not produce strong branches.

Malus John Downie Tree (Flowering Crab Apple Trees) Description

  • Common name: Flowering Crab Apple tree
  • Height and spread in 20 years: 5 x 3 metres
  • Seasons of interest: Spring, Autumn, Winter
  • Foliage: Mid-green foliage is spring, turning yellow and orange in the autumn. Offers white blossom in the spring and large red and yellow fruits in autumn
  • Soil: Suited to all but grows particularly well in moist, well-drained soil