Malus sargentii

Sargent Crabapple




  • native to Japan
  • zone 4

Habit and Form

  • a small, deciduous tree
  • 6' to8' tall or perhaps a bit larger
  • 1.5 to 2 times wider than tall
  • dense, twiggy branching
  • habit can be described as mounded

Summer Foliage

  • alternate leaf arrangement
  • deciduous leaves
  • leaves ovate to oval
  • leaves are 2" to 3" long and 1 to 2" wide
  • leaves are typically 3-lobed
  • sharply-toothed leaf margins
  • deep green color

Autumn Foliage

  • foliage turns a mix of yellow and green


  • blooms in April to early May
  • pink to red in bud, opening to white
  • fragrant, 5-petaled blossoms
  • individual flowers are 1" wide
  • flowers held in clusters
  • can be very showy
  • borne in alternate years, although off year is still showy


  • fruits held in clusters
  • shiny, deep red color
  • 0.4" diameter crabapples
  • very showy in the autumn


  • shiny, gray-brown color
  • scaley
  • not of particular ornamental importance


  • prefers full sun
  • very tolerant of a range of soils
  • prefers moist, organic, slightly acid soils
  • easy to cultivate

Landscape Use

  • patio tree
  • small groupings or massing
  • specimen
  • useful for showy bloom
  • useful for high quality summer foliage
  • attract birds and wildlife to fruit
  • a very useful crabapple because of its short height and form


  • relatively resistant to most crabapple disease and insect problems

ID Features

  • short for a crabapple
  • nearly twice as wide as tall
  • three-lobed leaves
  • clusters of small, shiny red fruit in fall
  • flower buds pink, opening to white
  • flowers and fruit held in clusters


  • comes true from seed
  • cuttings
  • tissue culture


'Rosea' - Similar to the species, but the flower buds are slightly darker and the open flowers are a bit larger. The plant grows a bit larger than the species. Some references indicate that 'Rosea' is more susceptible to scab, but this seems to be largely unsubstantiated.

'Tina' - This cultivar is thought to be a sargentii type. It is a more dwarf selection that doesn't get much larger than 6' tall.

© Copyright Mark H. Brand, 1997-2015.

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Citation and Acknowledgements: University of Connecticut Plant Database,, Mark H. Brand, Department of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture, Storrs, CT 06269-4067 USA.