Here is a summary of a nursery production schedule for fruit trees:
• Late fall: Cut/dig rootstock liners.
• Early spring: Plant liners.
• Late summer: Bud rootstock liner.
• Early spring: Cut off top of rootstock liner above bud.
• Late fall: Dig finished trees.
• Early spring: Sell/ship finished trees.
See this article titled Nursery Production of Finished Apple Trees for more detailed information.
Answer provided by Robert Crassweller, Penn State University.…
Without question, a dwarfing rootstock can reduce vegetative growth, resulting in a tree with a smaller trunk, shorter height, narrower canopy, and lower root volume. These rootstocks, however, do not reduce size of leaves, flowers, or fruit. Nearly all NC-140 apple rootstock trials have evaluated rootstock effects on fruit size, and, in some cases, rootstock did in fact affect size. In no case was the relationship between the degree of dwarfing and fruit size such that the more dwarfing the …