Red Obelisk Crabapple Malus Red Obelisk = 'Dvp Obel'

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
Crab apple


Malus Red Obelisk, known by its most common name, the Red Obelisk Crabapple, is a striking ornamental tree that presents a blend of architectural form and captivating floral display. One of the most eye-catching features of this crabapple is its columnar shape, which gives it a distinct, upright appearance. The leaves of the Red Obelisk Crabapple are a deep green with a somewhat glossy finish, which contrast beautifully with the flowers and fruit. In spring, the tree bursts into color with clusters of bright pink to reddish flowers that are both visually stunning and attractive to pollinators such as bees. These flowers are small and cup-shaped, and they envelope the tree in a vibrant, fragrant cloak that heralds the arrival of the warmer season. As the blooms fade, small, oval-shaped fruits take their place. These crabapples are typically a robust, glossy red and persist well into the winter months, providing visual interest even when much of the landscape is dormant. The fruits are not only a feast for the eyes but they also serve as a food source for various types of birds and other wildlife. The bark of the Red Obelisk Crabapple is smooth and has a gray-brown hue that complements its overall aesthetic. With a balance of elegant form, dynamic foliage, striking blooms, and ornamental fruit, the Red Obelisk Crabapple is a delightful addition to any setting where a touch of vertical emphasis and seasonal color is desired.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Synonyms

      Red Obelisk Flowering Crabapple, Red Obelisk Crabapple.

    • Common names

      Malus Red Obelisk = 'Dvp Obel'

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Malus Red Obelisk is commonly known as crabapple. Crabapple trees are not considered toxic to humans. In fact, the fruit of crabapple trees is edible, though it might be unpleasantly sour or bitter compared to cultivated apples. There have been no significant reports of poisoning from eating crabapple fruit. However, the seeds inside the apples contain compounds that can release cyanide when digested, but you would have to consume an unusually large amount of seeds for it to be harmful.

    • To pets

      Crabapple, the common name for Malus Red Obelisk, is generally considered non-toxic to pets. Animals can usually consume the fruit without adverse effects, though the taste might not be appealing to them. However, like with humans, the seeds contain compounds that can release cyanide when digested. Ingesting a large amount of seeds could potentially lead to cyanide poisoning, which can cause symptoms such as difficulty breathing, panting, shock, and in severe cases, might be fatal if not treated promptly. It's generally safe for pets to be around crabapple trees, but it's a good idea to keep an eye on your pet to ensure they do not consume large amounts of seeds.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      10-15 feet (3-4.5 meters)

    • Spread

      4-6 feet (1.2-1.8 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Ornamental Appeal: Malus 'Red Obelisk' offers aesthetically pleasing blooms and distinctive columnar growth, making it a striking feature in the landscape.
    • Compact Size: Its narrow, upright habit is well-suited for small gardens or tight spaces where other trees might not fit.
    • Spring Blossoms: The plant produces vibrant pink to red flowers in spring, which can add significant ornamental value during the season.
    • Fall Color: Leaves often turn attractive shades of yellow and orange in autumn, providing seasonal interest.
    • Wildlife Attraction: The fruit attracts birds and beneficial pollinators, promoting biodiversity in the garden.
    • Low Maintenance: Once established, it requires minimal pruning and care, making it a good choice for gardeners of all levels of experience.
    • Edible Fruit: The small apples can be used for culinary purposes, such as making jellies or attracting wildlife.

  • 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

    • Photography backdrop: The Red Obelisk apple tree, with its striking vertical growth and beautiful blossoms, can provide a stunning backdrop for outdoor portrait photography.
    • Seasonal celebrations: Branches can be cut and brought indoors to create natural decorations for seasonal celebrations such as Easter or spring-themed events due to their blossoms.
    • Nature-inspired art: Artists may use the Red Obelisk apple tree as a live model for sketching, painting, or any other form of visual art to capture its unique form and color.
    • Privacy screening: They can be planted in a row to create a natural privacy screen in a garden due to their upright form and dense foliage.
    • Educational tool: This tree can be used in educational settings such as schools for teaching biology, especially topics related to plant growth habits and fruit development.
    • Wildlife habitat: When planted in a wildlife garden, it can offer shelter and food to various birds and beneficial insects.
    • Homemade crafts: Dried twigs and small branches of the Red Obelisk apple tree can be utilized in crafting homemade wreaths or other decorative items.
    • Culinary presentations: Thin slices of the tree's apples can be artistically arranged on platters for gourmet presentations or used in fruit carvings.
    • Climbing structure for plants: The robust branches can serve as a climbing structure for vine plants like clematis, providing an interesting mix of textures in the garden.
    • Seasonal contrast planting: The Red Obelisk can be used in gardens as a contrast plant for its columnar shape and reddish leaves among more rounded and green foliage plants.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The plant_name is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The plant_name is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Beauty: The Red Obelisk apple tree, with its appealing reddish-purple foliage and attractive form, symbolizes beauty and aesthetic appeal.
    • Health: Apples have been associated with health and wellness for centuries, and the Malus Red Obelisk is no exception, representing the importance of physical well-being.
    • Knowledge: In various mythologies, especially the Biblical narrative, the apple is seen as a symbol of knowledge, temptation, and enlightenment.
    • Abundance: As apple trees produce fruit in large quantities, they have come to symbolize abundance and generosity.
    • Love and Desire: The apple's connection to sensuality and temptation through history also makes it a symbol of love and desire.
    • Magical Properties: In some cultural traditions, apples are believed to possess magical properties, representing mystery and the supernatural.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Late winter-early spring
As needed
  • water dropWater

    The Red Columnar Apple Tree should be watered deeply once a week during its first growing season to help establish a strong root system. After establishment, reduce watering to every 2 to 3 weeks, depending on the weather and soil drainage. When watering, apply around 10 gallons per tree to ensure moisture reaches the deep roots. Adjust the amount during periods of rainfall or drought, and always water the tree at the base, avoiding wetting the leaves to reduce the risk of disease. During the winter months, watering may be reduced significantly, especially if there is sufficient rain.

  • sunLight

    Red Columnar Apple Trees thrive in full sun, meaning at least six to eight hours of direct sunlight daily. The best spot for planting is an open area away from taller structures or trees that might cast a shadow. Ensure the location receives unobstructed sunlight throughout the day for the healthiest growth and best fruit production.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Red Columnar Apple Trees are hardy and can withstand cold temperatures, surviving in zones 4 through 8. They are capable of enduring winter lows down to -30°F and prefer a chill period to break dormancy and ensure abundant fruit production. The ideal temperature for optimal growth is between 60°F and 75°F during the growing season.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune Red Columnar Apple Trees during the dormant season, preferably in late winter or early spring, to remove any dead, damaged, or diseased branches and to maintain a strong, productive tree structure. Thinning out crowded areas improves air circulation and sunlight exposure, which is essential for fruit quality and reducing disease. Pruning should be done annually to encourage new growth and better fruit yields.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Red Obelisk Apple, or Columnar Apple, thrives in well-draining loamy soil enriched with organic matter. A pH level between 6.0 and 7.0 is ideal for this variety. Amending the soil with compost or aged manure will provide a nutrient-rich environment for healthy growth.

  • plantRepotting

    Columnar Apples, like 'Red Obelisk', are typically not repotted as they are outdoor trees. However, young trees should be planted in their permanent location in early spring or late winter.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    The Columnar Apple prefers average outdoor humidity levels. Sudden changes in humidity are generally not a concern for this hardy outdoor tree.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Grow in bright light, ensure large pot, regular pruning required.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in full sun, well-draining soil, water regularly.

    • Hardiness zone

      4-8 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    The Red Obelisk Apple Tree (Malus ‘Red Obelisk’) starts its life cycle as a seed, but when cultivated for commercial or decorative purposes, it is often propagated through grafting. Once planted, the seedling or grafted sapling enters a vegetative stage, developing a robust root system and foliage. As it matures into a young tree, it experiences a period of rapid growth where the main trunk and branches establish their form. The tree then reaches the flowering stage, typically in spring, when it produces blossoms that, if pollinated, develop into apples. Following pollination and fruit set, apples mature through the summer months, readying for harvest in late summer to fall. Once past its prime fruiting years, the tree enters a period of senescence, its growth slows and production diminishes until it eventually dies.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Late winter-early spring

    • Propogation: The Malus 'Red Obelisk', typically known as the 'Red Obelisk' flowering crabapple, can be effectively propagated through grafting, which is the most popular method for this particular cultivar. The ideal time for grafting is during the late winter or early spring, just before active growth begins. Grafting involves splicing a stem of the 'Red Obelisk' crabapple, containing at least one bud, onto the rootstock of a more robust or disease-resistant apple variety. This stem piece, also known as the scion, is carefully joined with the rootstock in a way that ensures the vascular tissues align, which allows for the scion to integrate and grow with the rootstock. The graft union is then sealed with grafting tape or wax to prevent drying out and infection, and the newly formed plant is cared for until the graft has fully taken and the plant is ready to be transplanted into the orchard or landscape.