When buying a new apple or pear always select plants with a good root system and sturdy stems, or buy mail order from a reputable nursery.
One-year-old trees are called ‘Maidens’ and are sold as feathered or unfeathered.
- Feathered maidens: are sold with their sideshoots attached. On these plants, the sideshoots have been kept on and will form the main branches. This saves a year of formative pruning. Buy one with a well-balanced, goblet-shaped branch system. These trees may be more expensive than unfeathered maidens
- Unfeathered maidens: are sold without their sideshoots, as a single stem. They are often cheaper than feathered maidens and almost as satisfactory