Hang in there Sheila, you are only a few years away. Circle your trees with cardboard and a deep mulch.
my neighbor and I go out trees together at the same time. hers are fruiting this year. her apple trees are huge. lots of apples on one of the trees. what we noticed is, she has two rows of trees. the trees next to her driveway are all nice and big and healthy looking and producing stuff nicely. as the trees get closer to the woods, they get smaller and smaller, to where the closest ones are, there are barely any branches on them. she's going to try lime as well.
https://soils.tfrec.wsu.edu/webnutrition ... soilpH.htm
Ideally, a range of 6.0 to 7.5 is optimal for orchards; however, excellent orchards occur on soils ranging in pH from 5.0 to 8.0. In general, the availability of micronutrients is lower in alkaline soils. Nutrients such as iron and zinc may not be in a form available to plants. In contrast, phosphorus may become limiting in acid soils. Also, in acid soils, aluminum can become available. It is not a nutrient and is toxic to plants in high concentrations. At pH 6 and higher, very little aluminum is in solution.
Additionally, soil pH affects the abundance of microorganisms. Bacteria are generally more prevalent in alkaline soils and fungi dominate in acidic soils. This is important because microbes are responsible for the cycling of nutrients. The most diverse and numerous populations are found in near-neutral soils. Furthermore, soil pH influences pathogenic microbes, and growers can adjust pH to manage some plant diseases.
Nutritional problems associated with low pH (<5.0)
bark measles of Delicious apple
manganese (Mn) toxicity
calcium (Ca) and magnesium (Mg) deficiencies
restricted root growth or regeneration due to aluminum (Al) toxicity
reduced availability of P
reduced efficiency of N and K use and poor response to N and K fertilizers
High pH values may also lead to nutritional problems.
The availability of many micronutrients (Mn, Cu, Zn, and B for example) decrease as soil pH increases.