Chonosuki Crabapple Malus tschonoskii

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
Chonosuki crab


The plant commonly known as Chonosuki crabapple or Tschonoski crabapple is known for its stunning appearance that makes it a favorite among gardeners and landscape designers. It has a broad crown with branches that spread out gracefully. The leaves of this tree are one of its distinctive features; they emerge as a purplish color in spring, mature to a green in the summer, and in the autumn, they put on a spectacular show of colors ranging from yellow to purple before falling off. Its bark is also notable for its attractive, smooth, and shiny texture, which can add visual interest to a garden year-round. Another striking characteristic is the white blossoms that appear in abundance during the flowering season. These flowers are not only beautiful to look at but they also attract pollinators such as bees. Following the blossoms, small apple-like fruits develop, starting green and turning to a cheerful yellow as they mature. These fruits, while not typically consumed by humans, can be a food source for wildlife during the autumn and winter months. Overall, the Tschonoski crabapple is admired for its ornamental value, with its distinctive seasonal changes that provide year-round interest in a landscape setting. Its visual appeal is further enhanced by the strong structure and form of the branches, making it a picturesque and valuable addition to any space that can accommodate a tree of its size.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Chonosuki Crabapple, Pillar Apple.

    • Common names

      Malus tschonoskii.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      The common name for Malus tschonoskii is Pillar Apple. As with many members of the Malus genus, the Pillar Apple itself is not considered toxic to humans. However, caution should be exercised because seeds within the apple, like those from other apple varieties, contain amygdalin, which can release cyanide when metabolized. Ingesting a small number of seeds is unlikely to cause harm, but consuming large quantities of crushed or chewed seeds could potentially lead to symptoms of cyanide poisoning. These symptoms may include headache, dizziness, shortness of breath, and in severe cases, seizures, coma, or even death. It is important to note that poisoning from consuming apple seeds is extremely rare due to the small amount of amygdalin they contain.

    • To pets

      The Pillar Apple is not commonly known to be toxic to pets. However, as with humans, the seeds contain amygdalin, which can release cyanide when ingested in large quantities. While small amounts of apple flesh can be safe for pets like dogs, the seeds should be avoided. Consuming a lot of apple seeds could potentially lead to cyanide poisoning in pets, with symptoms that might include salivation, dilated pupils, difficulty breathing, shock, and in extreme cases, collapse or coma. However, such cases are rare because a pet typically would not consume enough crushed seeds to result in serious toxicity. It is always best to consult with a veterinarian if you suspect your pet has eaten something potentially harmful.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      20 feet (6 meters)

    • Spread

      15 feet (4.5 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Ornamental value: Malus tschonoskii, also known as Pillar Apple, has a pleasing aesthetic appearance, providing visual interest in gardens and landscapes with its narrow, columnar growth habit and attractive foliage.
    • Spring blossoms: The plant offers a spectacular display of white to pink flowers in spring, which can enhance the beauty of any garden setting.
    • Fall coloration: It features stunning autumn foliage, with leaves turning vibrant shades of yellow, orange, and red, adding seasonal interest to the environment.
    • Wildlife habitat: Pillar Apple can serve as a habitat and food source for a variety of wildlife, including birds and beneficial insects, which is important for maintaining biodiversity.
    • Low maintenance: It is known for being relatively low maintenance compared to other ornamental trees, requiring less pruning and care once established.
    • Shade and shelter: As a medium-sized tree, Pillar Apple can provide shade and shelter in landscapes, improving the microclimate and offering a comfortable space for relaxation.
    • Erosion control: By establishing strong root systems, Malus tschonoskii can help in stabilizing soil and preventing erosion in the landscape.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Pillar of Honey Production: Pillars Apple can be used to produce apple blossom honey, known for its light color and mild flavor, making it a favorite among beekeepers and honey enthusiasts.
    • Artistic Muse: Artists and photographers may be drawn to the Pillars Apple for its striking vertical form and visually appealing blossoms, capturing its beauty in various forms of art.
    • Education and Research: Botanical gardens and universities might utilize Pillars Apple to study arboreal growth patterns and hybridization potential with other Malus species.
    • Landscape Design: Due to its columnar growth habit, it can act as a natural privacy screen or a dramatic focal point in garden designs.
    • Ice Cider Production: The fruit from Pillars Apple could be fermented into ice cider, a dessert cider made from apples frozen either before or after harvest, offering a concentrated sweet flavor.
    • Wildlife Habitat: The tree's structure provides nesting sites for birds and its blossoms can attract a variety of pollinators, enriching local biodiversity.
    • Bonsai Creation: The unique growth form of the Pillars Apple can be utilized in the art of bonsai, where its natural shape can be further styled and miniaturized.
    • Seasonal Celebrations: Its spring blossoms and autumn fruits make it a natural choice for festivals that celebrate seasonal changes, especially in Asian cultures.
    • Cultivar Comparative Studies: Gardeners and horticulturists can use Pillars Apple to compare growth habits and hardiness against other types of columnar apple trees.
    • Craft Materials: Branches from the Pillars Apple can be used for crafting wreaths or incorporated into floral arrangements for their aesthetic appeal.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Pillar Apple Tree is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Pillar Apple Tree is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Endurance and Strength: The malus tschonoskii, commonly known as the Pillar Apple, is recognized for its hardiness and ability to withstand tough conditions, symbolizing the human qualities of endurance and strength.
    • Renewal and Beginning: As a tree that blossoms in spring, the Pillar Apple is often associated with new beginnings and the rejuvenating power of nature.
    • Temptation and Desire: Apple trees in general have a historical association with temptation and desire, hearkening back to various mythologies and religious stories, such as the tale of Adam and Eve in the Christian tradition.

Every 1-2 weeks
10000 - 20000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring-Early Summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    For the Pillar Apple Tree, the watering needs vary with the season and the rainfall, but generally, it should be watered deeply once a week during the growing season. Use approximately 15 to 20 gallons per watering session to ensure moisture reaches the root zone. During the winter or in cooler climates, reduce the watering frequency to reflect lower evaporation rates and natural precipitation. It’s critical to avoid waterlogging, so ensure good drainage and adjust watering in response to rainfall.

  • sunLight

    The Pillar Apple Tree thrives in full sun conditions, meaning it should receive at least six hours of direct sunlight daily. The best spot for this tree is an open area with unobstructed access to sunlight throughout the day, as ample sunshine is vital for fruit production and overall health.

  • thermometerTemperature

    The Pillar Apple Tree is hardy and can handle a range of temperatures, from a winter low of around -20°F to summer highs that can exceed 90°F. The ideal growing temperatures for this tree are between 60°F and 75°F. It's essential to avoid late frost in spring and to provide a location with some wind protection to prevent damage at any time of year.

  • scissorsPruning

    Pruning the Pillar Apple Tree is essential to maintain its shape, promote healthy growth, and maximize fruit production. Prune annually during the dormant season, typically in late winter, by removing dead or diseased branches and thinning out crowded areas to improve air circulation. Also, trim back branches that are growing inwards, towards the tree's center.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Pillar Apple Tree prefers a well-drained loam soil with a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. To create the best soil mix, combine garden soil, some compost, and a bit of sand to ensure proper drainage. Checking pH levels and adjusting with lime or sulfur may be necessary to reach the optimal range.

  • plantRepotting

    The Pillar Apple Tree, being a larger tree species, does not require frequent repotting and is generally planted in a permanent location. However, young trees should be planted in a space that accommodates future growth, and may only need repotting if initially grown in a container and have outgrown it, approximately every 2 to 3 years.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Pillar Apple Trees are adaptable and can tolerate a range of humidity levels common in outdoor environments. They do not require specific humidity conditions and will thrive in the natural outdoor humidity levels found in their growing zones.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      It's challenging to grow Pillar Apple Trees indoors due to their size.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in full sun, well-draining soil; water deeply; mulch base.

    • Hardiness zone

      4-7 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Commonly known as Pillar Apple due to its upright form, Malus tschonoskii begins its life cycle from seed germination, which occurs when the environmental conditions are favorable, typically in moist, well-drained soil in a temperate climate. Following germination, the seedling emerges and develops into a juvenile tree, establishing a deep root system and beginning to form its characteristic narrow, upright trunk and branching pattern. The tree then progresses to its vegetative growth stage, where it focuses on leaf production, height, and girth increase, and develops flower buds. The reproductive stage comes next, as Pillar Apple produces fragrant white or pink flowers in the spring which, upon pollination by insects such as bees, will develop into the typical apple fruit that mature by fall. The mature tree can then produce seeds from the fruit, which are dispersed by animals or gravity to continue the life cycle. Lastly, as the tree ages, it enters a period of senescence where growth slows, and it may become more susceptible to environmental stresses, pests, and diseases, eventually leading to the end of its life cycle.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-Early Summer

    • The Malus tschonoskii, commonly known as the Chokeberry or Pillar Apple, is typically propagated by seed or by grafting. The most popular method is grafting, which ensures that the desirable characteristics of the parent plant are preserved. For grafting, scion wood from a healthy parent tree is collected in late winter when the tree is dormant, and then grafted onto a compatible rootstock in early spring. This is usually accomplished by cutting a section of the scion into a wedge shape and inserting it into a corresponding slit in the rootstock. The grafted area is then wrapped to hold it in place and protect it from pests and diseases until the graft union heals and the scion begins to grow on its own.