Butterball Crab Apple, Large Trees

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General Info RHS AGM, Edible Fruit / Nuts, Pollinator, Wildlife Value
Shade Full Sun, Partial Shade
Area Coastal Areas, Exposed Windy Areas, Frost Pockets, Scotland & The North
Soil Good, Well Drained, Acidic, Alkaline/Chalky, Poor/Dry
Colour White/Cream, Yellow/Gold
Fruiting Mid Season Fruiting
Type Screening
Ornamental Autumn Colour, Berries
Flowering Apr, May

Malus Butterball (Standard)

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  Buy 3 or more bareroot trees and save

SIZES 1-2 3-910+
  Prices include VAT(where applicable)



Crab Apple, Butterball - Standard needs...
  • Tree Guards for Standards and established Trees

    Tree Guard, Heavy Duty

    From £4.02

  • Treated Tree Stakes

    Stakes, Tree Planting

    From £5.76

  • Rootgrow Root Stimulant


    From £6.00

  • Tree Planting pack - mulch mat, pegs, stake and tie

    Tree Planting Pack

    From £10.19

Butterball Crabapple Standard Trees

It's hard to pin down the best thing about Malus Butterball. It is a great wildlife attractant. Bees and other pollinators adore the clouds of spring blossom, which is a delicate pink in bud, opening to pure white, and the crabs which are a rich yellow - blushing red in a sunny spot - usually ripen in October are a great food source for all kinds of birds. Butterball is also self-fertile, producing up to 10 times the amount of pollen of an ordinary apple tree. The fruit makes a wonderful, zingy bright jelly too, just the ticket with a Sunday roast. Or try your hand at crab apple liqueur with vodka and sugar.

As a tree, Butterball is spreading and slightly drooping, especially under the weight of its fruit in autumn. As a standard, it will grow to 6 metres or so in height while half standards can be kept to 3.5-4 metres making them ideal if your garden is on the small side.

Browse the rest of our range of crab apple trees

Planting and design

Give Butterball a little space as it makes a good focal point. Give it pride of place, so it can be seen and admired, whether covered in flowers in spring or with the branches dripping with fruit in autumn. So don't hide it away. Crab apples aren't too fussy about soil or sunlight really, as long as it's fairly free draining, although the sunnier the spot the redder the fruit. Butterball will fit right in with a cottage garden scheme, with its pretty blossom, hanging branches and relaxed habit. Underplant with a few spring bulbs if you feel inclined, something cottagey like crocuses, daffodils or bluebells for a relaxed, naturalistic feel.


  • Final height/spread: 3-5m x 3-5m (depending on form)
  • Foliage: deciduous
  • Use: specimen
  • Features: white spring blossom, yellow-orange crabs in autumn
  • Soil: well-drained, in sun or light shade
  • RHS Award of Garden Merit

Did You Know?

In some south-east Asian countries crab apples are used as a sour condiment, with shrimp paste, chilli and salt. Butterball also makes fantastic jelly.

  • Small Box

    Small boxes

    (Orders containing seedlings or rooted cuttings)


    including VAT per order


    For ORDERS
    Over £60 inc VAT

  • Small box

    (All barerooted plants under 1.2 metres in height. Please note: all trees are charged at the trees and hedging rate.)


    including VAT per order


    For ORDERS
    Over £60 inc VAT

  • Medium box

    (Any pots up to
    and incl. 7.5L)


    including VAT per order


    For ORDERS
    Over £100 inc VAT

  • Trees & Hedging

    (For all orders of trees of any size, and all bareroot plants 1.2 metres and over in height)


    including VAT per order

  • Pallets

    (For all orders of root balls,
    and large orders, a pallet
    price will be automatically
    applied at checkout)


    including VAT per order

*Delivery to mainland Britain & the Isle of Wight ONLY. Surcharges to the Isle of Wight and some areas of Scotland apply.

Bareroot planting is best done between November and April
Bareroot and potted - what's the difference?

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