Virtues: This crabapple is an ideal choice for small yards and gardens, including those bordered by overhead utility lines because it reaches just 10 feet tall. In spring, it puts on a show of beautiful white flowers, which feed pollinators. Bright red fruits appear in fall and cling to the tree well into winter, drawing birds to the garden.
Common name: Sweet Sugar Tyme crabapple
Botanical name: Malus 'Swesutyzam'
Exposure: Full sun
Season of interest: Spring for flowers; fall/winter for fruits
Flowers/fruit: Pink flower buds open into white five-petaled flowers in the spring. Prominent yellow stamens stand out at the center of each flower. Dangling clusters of berry-like fruits ripen to bright red in the fall and persist into winter.
Habit: Sweet Sugar Tyme is a small deciduous tree that grows just 10 feet tall. Its crown is oval in shape and reaches about 10 feet in diameter.
Origin: This crabapple was bred and introduced by Jim Zampini at Lake County Nursery in Ohio. It can be found under the Proven Winners brand.
How to grow it: Plant Sweet Sugar Type crabapple in full sun and average, well-drained soil. It can be planted in spring or fall. Keep the soil moist, especially in the first growing season as the tree gets established. Because this is a compact cultivar, it should not require pruning. However, be aware that flower buds form in summer, to open the following spring. Winter pruning will remove them. To avoid this prune the tree just after it flowers. USDA Zones 4–8.
Image courtesy of Proven Winners ColorChoice Trees