Apples are the most popular type of fruit tree for good reason - they are easy to grow, productive and there are varieties and growth forms suitable for every garden. There is nothing like eating fresh fruit straight from the tree in autumn; far better than anything from the supermarket. Different varieties produce their fruit at different times of the year and late ripening varieties store well, so you can have a plentiful stock that can be enjoyed throughout the winter. Apples grow on rootstocks which determine the ultimate size of the tree and are a key factor in getting a successful crop. They originated in Central Asia, where their wild ancestor, Malus sieversii, is still found today. There are more than 7,500 known cultivars of apples, resulting in a range of desired characteristics.