Apple trees come mainly as a scion, or top portion, grafted onto a rootstock. The type of rootstock used will help determine the eventual size the tree will grow to.
Some rootstocks will produce a full sized tree, while others will dwarf the tree and make it grow smaller. Growing apple trees that are dwarfed is more common in the home garden.
A second consideration before growing apple trees is that nearly all apple trees do not self-pollinate.
This means that to grow apple trees that bear fruit, more than one tree needs to be planted. The two or more trees used should also be of different species with similar bloom times.
This will provide healthier and more abundant fruit. Some varieties of apple tree will pollinate better than others, and selection should take this into consideration.
Apple trees will tolerate a wide range of soils, so long as water and nutrients are not limited and the pH level is adequate. The soil used for growing apple trees should be well draining, as standing water in the roots can kill the trees.
The location should also be in a higher level, as cold air in the spring will settle in lower areas and possibly damage the tree. More information about growing apple trees can be found at any nursery or garden center.