Hewes Crab blossom The Orchard
at Sage Hen Farm:
Apple Trees


At Sage Hen Farm in Lodi, NY, we have a young orchard, several older fruit trees planted by a previous owner, and remnants from a much older apple orchard now part of a mixed deciduous woods. The fruit charts on this site list and describe more than 100 trees, including apples, cherries, pears, peaches, plums, and apricots. However, our orchard is not large. For most varieties, we only have one tree. Among our apple trees, we have concentrated on cold hardy varieties and varieties venerated by past generations.

Elsewhere on this site are a page about my grandpap's apple orchard and a page of links to other apple resources available online. Below the table is a key to the sources used for ratings of the apples.

The table is divided up by season and in order of ripening:
August | September | Late September to Early October | October | Later October

Here are the apple trees in alphabetical order

Antonovka, Ashmead's Kernal, Autumn Crisp, Baldwin, Blacktwig, Briggs Auburn
Calville Blanc, Chestnut Crab, Cole's Quince, Connell Red, Detroit Red, Duchess of Oldenburg, Esopus Spitzenberg
Gala, Garden Royal, Ginger Gold, Golden Pippin, Golden Russet, Red Gravenstein, Ginger Gold, Grimes Golden
Haralson, Hewes Crab, Holstein, Honeycrisp, Hubbardston Nonesuch, Hudson's Golden Gem
Jefferis, Jonagold, Keepsake, Kidd's Orange Red, King David, King of the Pippins, King of Tompkins County, Kinnaird's
Liberty, Lodi, Macoun, Magog Redstreak, Mother, Newtown Pippin, Northern Spy, Northfield Beauty
Pitmaston Pine Apple, Porter, Rambo, Red Canada, Redfield, Redflesh, Rhode Island Greening, Roxbury Russet
Smokehouse, St. Edmund's Russet, Sops of Wine, Stayman, Starkey, Striped Harvey, Summer Pearmain, Summer Rambo
Tolman Sweet, Twenty Ounce, Wagener, Red Wealthy, Westfield Seek No Further, Winesap, Yellow Bellflower, Zestar


AUGUST

Variety

Origin & Date

Image Sources

Fruit Uses

Pick
Merits & Faults

Ratings

Size,
Shape
& Flavor
Color & Texture
of Skin
& Flesh

Lodi
(Improved Yellow Transparent)

(Montgomery X Yellow Transparent), NY
1911

aa ea nf ng


large


classic apple shape, with a little more tapering


mild, on the tart side of sweet-tart

cream; thin & tender skinned


greenish cream

tender, moderately fine-grained, dry

Culinary, especially sauce


not yet fruiting
Merits: Tree: very hardy (nearly ironclad, to z2 or 3); resistant to apple scab and powdery mildew; fruit hangs well. Fruit: prized for sauce.

Faults: Tree: tends biennial; bears fruits uneven in size & shape; susceptible to fire blight. Fruit: very poor keeper; bruises easily; quickly browning flesh; becomes mealy when overripe.

Merit or fault?: Tree: heavy cropper, thinning required for good sized fruit and to prevent biennial bearing; naturally large , upright; partial tip bearer (pruning challenge) . Fruit: susceptible to sweet water core [provides special burst of flavor, but lead to decay at core].

Ratings: AA: *; Burford; FB1001: D1.

Summer Pearmain
(American Summer Pearmain)

(parentage unknown)
US
before 1800

cf nf ng

not yet fruiting

medium


blocky


very rich, pleasant subacid

dull purplish red marbling over greenish yellow; smooth skinned


yellow

tender, very fine-grained, very juicy

Fresh eating

not yet fruiting
Merits: Tree: hardy (to z4). Fruit: aromatic; ranked best early season apple by several authorities.

Faults: Tree: slow to mature; shy bearer. Fruit: poor keeper.

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally small. Fruit: ripens over several weeks.

Ratings: AoNY: best; NY1907: AFC: 23/3 ME,PA, IN-, NC (superior); AP: best; Baker: NY:*; BBG; BUF; Bull09: vgb*; Burford; Elliot: best; FB113: &; FB208: HR(D) ; FB1001: D2; Hooper: 1; HSL: listed, but not rated; Lear: 10; Lowther: best; Prince; Ragan: best; Scott: 1.

Cole's Quince
(
Quince, Seneca Spice, Seneca Favorite)
(parentage unknown)
Me.
before 1850

ea me

large


flatter shape, prominently ribbed and knobby


on the sweet side of sweet-tart, distinctive

yellow, dotted; thick skinned


yellow, blushed

tender, moderately coarse-grained, moderately dry

not yet fruiting

Culinary

 not yet fruiting
Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3); annual; early bearer. Fruit: good for fresh & "first-rate" for cooking.

Faults: Fruit: poor keeper.

Merit or fault?: Fruit: ripens over several weeks; distinctive flavor.

Ratings: AoNY: favorably mentioned, but not rated; NY1907: _ [Supplanted by better sorts]; AFC: (high flavor); AP: good/vg; B-H: g-vg;  Bull91: 5-6*; Bull09: vg*; Burford; Can: best [but may refer to different apple]; Cole [son of its propagator]: "when in perfection, we have not seen its superior; Eliott: vg; FB113: &; FB208: R(K); Hooper: 2; Lowther: vg; ME94: vg/*; ME08: vg; MI79: vg, 5.8.6; Ragan: vg; UIll: vg for cooking (one of 17 of "greatest promise for general usefulness"); Waugh: fair

Duchess of Oldenburg (Borovitsky, Duchess, Oldenburg)
(parentage unknown)
Russia
before 1700,
introduced to North America in 1835

Duchess of Oldenburg

large


classic shape, slightly ribbed


rich tartness

maroon over cream or green, blue bloom; moderately thick skinned


greenish pale cream

semi-firm, coarse-grained, moderately dry


Culinary


August 20-24

Merits: Tree: very hardy (ironclad, to z2); early bearer; heavy cropper of large fruit; bears fruits uniform in size & shape; fruits hang well on tree; requires little pruning. Fruit: prized for early season cooking and sauce.

Faults: Tree: susceptible to various diseases. Fruit: poor keeper; becomes mealy when overripe.

Merit or fault?: Tree: tip bearer (pruning challenge); naturally small; ripens over several weeks; tends to be biennial, but often annual. Fruit: culinary only .

Ratings: AA: [no stars]; AoNY: g-vg for culinary purposes; NY1907: * [** in other regions]; NY1916: 13; AFC: 21/2 ME, NY IN+, WI; AP: good; Baker: NY (20); BC: good; B-H: described but not rated; Bull91: 4-5**; Bull09: g**; CG: 35/20/20/75; Can: dessert fair, cooking good, commercial value - first class; Cole: excellent only for cooking; D: not 1st quality; FB113: NE*&; FB208: HR(K); FB1001: D1,2,3,6,7,8,9; F&T: $H (8 regions); Gould: culinary only; Hooper: 2; HSL: 2; Keil: listed among top varieties for  sauce & pies; Lowther: good; ME94: good/**; MI79: good, 5.9.8; MI90: good, 5.9.9; NW: good; Ont: 2/10/10/10; Prince; Ragan: good; Waugh: fair ; Wilkinson: good/*

Sops in Wine
(Sops of Wine, Sapson)

(parentage unknown)
UK
before 1600

cf

not yet fruiting

medium to large


classic shape, slightly ribbed, asymmetric


mildly sweet-tart

purplish red over crimson, some yellow, dotted; moderately thin & tender skinned


white tinged with pink

tender, moderately fine-grained, moderately juicy

Culinary, cider

not yet fruiting




Merits: Tree: hardy (to z4); early bearer; heavy cropper of large fruit. Fruit: distinctive red stained white flesh.

Faults: Fruit: poor keeper; becomes mealy when overripe.

Merit or fault?: Fruit: ripens over several weeks.

Ratings: AoNY: good; Bull1897: 5-6/*; NY1907: _ [Superseded by better varieties] ; AFC: 9/0 ME,WI (good); AP: g-vg; B-H: g-vg; Baker: IL; Bull91: 5-6*; Bull09: g*; Elliott: vg; Cole: neither excellent nor profitable; D: g; FB208: R(D); Hooper: 3; HSL: 2; ME94: good/*; MI79: good, 4.6.6; Moore Orchards: mediocre at best; Ont: 2/5/2/0; Prince [under Sapson]; Ragan: good; Scott: 1 (as a cider sort); Waugh: fair; Wilkinson: good

Special: The name, according to an old source, comes not from any wine-like flavor, but because the pink tinge to the flesh made the apple look as though it had been soaked or dipped in red wine.

Ginger Gold
(unknown, but Golden Delicious
or Newtown Pippin may be included in its parentage)
Virginia
1938

aa al ea ny op st

not yet fruiting

medium to large


classic shape, ribbed


sweet, complex

green-yellow with slight red blush; tough skinned


white

firm, fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating

not yet fruiting

Merits: Tree: bears fruit uniform in size & shape. Fruit: non-browning flesh; does not bruise easily; excellent keeper( nearly 2 months) for an early fall apple.

Faults: Tree: slow to mature; highly susceptible to powdery mildew. Fruit: not good for cooking or baking.

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally large; partial tip bearer (pruning challenge) . Fruit: sweetness too cloying?

Rating: A21: vg: AA: *; Burford.

Northfield Beauty
(Siberian crab x Hubbardston?)
Vermont.
before 1875


Northfield Beauty

medium to large


classic shape, but slightly flattened, asymmetric


rich, subacid, complex

red & red stripes dominant over yellow, prominently dotted; tender skinned


white

semi-firm, moderately fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating, cider

August 27-Sept. 2
Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3); heavy cropper of good-sized fruit; fruit hangs well; resistant to scab.

Faults: Fruit: poor keeper.

Merit or fault?: Fruit: asymmetrical shape makes it not-so beautiful to some.

Ratings: Bull99: 6-8_; Bull09: vg_; Downing: good; AHS: approaching best; Ragan: vg; Waugh: good

Special: nearly lost, but promoted in California by Albert Etter after 1900

Garden Royal
(parentage unknown)
Massachusetts
before 1800


Garden Royal

small to medium


classic shape, but slightly flattened, slightly ribbed


rich & pleasant sweet-tart

green yellow with dull red & orange-red stripes, dotted; thin skinned


yellow

tender, fine-grained, very juicy

Fresh eating


August 28-Sept. 2

Merits: Tree: hardy (to z4); early bearer; hardy; long-lived. Fruit: pleasantly aromatic; one of highest rated for flavor.

Faults: Tree: biennial. Fruit: poor keeper; tender skin.

Merit or fault?: Tree: heavy cropper, but thinning required for good sized fruit; naturally small . Fruit: small.

Ratings: AoNY: vg; NY1907: *; AFC: (first rate); AP: vg-b; B-H: best; Baker: OH; Bull91: 10**; Bull09: b*; Burford; Cole: nothing superior; D: best; FB208: R(D); ME94: best/*; MI79: best, 8.5.9; Ragan: best; Scott: 1; Waugh: best

Special: tree died in 2014.

Zestar
(State Fair x MN 1691)
Minnesota
introduced 1998

aa ny op

not yet fruiting

medium


classic shape


rich, sweet-tart

greenish yellow with red streaks and blush


white

firm, fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating

not yet fruiting
Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3); early bearer; resistant to powdery mildew. Fruit: billed as crispest, crunchiest early season apple, excellent keeper (2 months) for an early season apple.

Merit or fault?: color often dull

Ratings: AA: *; Phillips: "spritely sweet flavor [with a] tang"

Special: I'm not including the exclamation point that is officially part of its name.

SEPTEMBER

Variety

Origin & Date

Image Sources

Fruit

Uses

Pick
Merits & Faults

Ratings

Size,
Shape
& Flavor
Color & Texture
of Skin
& Flesh

Summer Rambo
(Rambour Franc, Rambour d'Ete)

(parentage unknown)
France
before 1550

summerrambo

large


flatter shape, slightly ribbed toward the top, asymmetric


on the sweet side of sweet-tart 

red streaks and blush over greenish yellow, prominently dotted; thin & tender skinned


yellow

firm, but no crunch; moderately fine-grained, very juicy

Fresh eating, culinary

Sept 1


Merits: Tree: early bearer; heavy cropper of large fruit; some scab and fire blight resistance. Fruit: highly aromatic.

Faults: Fruit: poor keeper, becomes mealy.

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally large

Ratings: AoNY: good; MI79: good, 9.9.4; NY1907: b/*; AP: good?; BBG; FB208: D3; Gould: of merit; HSL: 1; Keil: among top 9 summer and fall apples; Prince; Ragan: good; Waugh: fair; UIll: vg; Y

Red Gravenstein
(Banks Gravenstein)
(parentage unknown)
Europe
before 1650,
red strain before 1880

aa al dw ea ng

medium to large


roundish, ribbed, often lopsided


rich, on the tart side of sweet-tart, complex

red stripes & splashes over orangy yellow; thin skinned


cream

semi-firm, very fine-grained, very juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

not yet fruiting

Merits: Fruit: prized for sprightly rich flavor; highly aromatic;  handles well; called equally good for dessert or cooking; considered best early season cider apple

Faults: Tree: biennial; slow to bear; triploid (does not pollinate); may drop fruit prematurely; susceptible to scab & powdery mildew ; subject to winter damage. Fruit: skin can become greasy; quickly browning.

Merit or fault?: Tree: supposed to be an early bearer, but we have not found that to be true; naturally large, spreading; productive or not very productive (reports vary); ripens over several weeks; partial tip bearer (pruning challenge) . Fruit: subject to sweet water core [provides special burst of flavor, but leads to decay at core].

Ratings [most are for Gravenstein, rather than Red Gravenstein]: AA: **; AoNY: vg-b; NY1907: **: NY1914: vg-b/*; A21: vg-b; AFC: 23/5 ME,NY,VA (high flavored, excellent); AP: vg; B-H: excellent; BBG; BC: vg; Baker: NY (12), MA (6), RI (12), NJ (20), MI90; BUF; Bull91: 5-6**; Bull99: 8-9**; Bull09: vg**; Can; dessert vg, cooking vg, commercial value - first class; Cole: one of the handsomest and best; D: vg; FB113: NE&; FB208: HR(DKM); FB1001: D10.11.12.13.14; F&T: *$H (2 regions); Gould: the standard; Hooper: sometimes excellent; Lear: 9; Lewelling; ME94: vg/**; MI79: vg, 6.7.5; MI90: vg, 7.7.7; NE2; Ont: 9/9/10/10; Phillips: "Refined spritely flavor"; Ragan: vg; Scott: 1; UIll: vg-b; Unimpeachable; Waugh: vg; Wilkinson: vg; Y

Special: Red Gravenstein is reported to thrive better in northern climates than the original.

Red Wealthy
(Case Wealthy)

(Sport of Wealthy, which is a Siberian crab open pollinated [possibly with Rambo])
NY 1933
(Weatlhy -- Minn., from Me.
before 1860)

Wealthy

medium


classic apple shape, slightly ribbed


mild, sweet-tart

red stripes over pale greenish yellow; tough, thin skinned


greenish white tinged with pink

semi-firm, moderately coarse-grained, moderately dry

Fresh eating, culinary

Sept. 1-2 

 


Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3); early bearer; non-browning flesh; resistant to scab. Fruit: does not bruise easily

Faults: Tree: Tree: biennial; thinning required for good sized fruits; drops fruit prematurely; susceptible to fire blight and powdery mildew. Fruit: skin can become greasy; susceptible to cedar-apple rust and fireblight; not a good keeper.

Merit or fault?: Tree: heavy cropper only when tree is young; partial tip bearer (pruning challenge) ; ripens over several weeks.

Ratings [most are for Wealthy, rather than Red Wealthy]: AA: **; AoNY: g-vg; NY1907: * [** in some other NY regions]; NY1914: g-vg/**; NY1916: l/sp; AFC: WI; BC: good; B-H: vg; Bull91: 6/**; Bull99: 6-7**; Bull09: vg**; Burford; CG: 37/15/22/74; Can; dessert good, cooking good, commercial value - first class; D: vg; FB113: NE&; FB208: HR(DKM); FB1001: D1,2,3,6,7,8,10,11; F&T: *$ (10 regions); Gould: none better in its season; Keil: listed among top varieties for stewing & pies; Lowther: vg; ME94: vg/*; MI90: f/m; NW: vg; Ont: 8/6/9/9; Phillips: "classic all-purpose homestead apple"; Ragan: vg; Scott: 1; Waugh: fair ; Wilkinson: vg/*; Y.

Porter
(parentage unknown)
Mass
before 1800


Porter

medium


elongated and tapered, asymmetric


rich, on the tart side of sweet-tart, complex

bright yellow, with dull orange or red blush; tender skinned


creamy white

semi-firm, fine-grained, dry

Culinary, especially baking

Sept. 1-6


Merits: Tree: hardy (to z4); although biennial, still has decent off-year production; late blooming protects it from frost damage. Fruit: very aromatic; retains shape remarkably well.

Faults: Tree: slow to bear; may drop fruit prematurely. Fruit: quickly browning flesh; poor keeper.

Merit or fault?: Tree: ripens over several weeks. Fruit: bruises somewhat easily.

Ratings: AoNY: g-vg; BC: vg; NY1907: *; NY1914: g-vg/**; AFC: 20/1 ME,MA,NY,PA (fine flavor); AP: g-vg; B-H: vg; Baker: NY (20), RI (6), VA; BUF; Bull91: 8-9**; Bull09: vgb*; Burford; Cole: excellent; Can; dessert vg, cooking vg, commercial value - third class; D: vg-b; FB113: NE&; FB208: HR(DM); Hedrick: best of all yellow fall apples; Hooper: 2, deserves a place in every orchard for beauty; Lear: 10; Lowther: best; ME94: best/**; MI79: vg, 7.6.7; NE7; Ont: 5/4/5/3; Prince; Ragan: vg-b; Scott: 1; UIll: vg-b; Waugh: vg; Wilkinson: vg-b

Special: specifically recommended for jelly and the only apply recommended for canning in early editions of the Boston Cooking School cookbook by Fannie Farmer

Autumn Crisp
(was NY 674)

(Golden Delicious X Monroe)
NY
1968?, named in 2009


Autumn Crisp

medium to large


classic apple shape
on the tart side of sweet-tart

red dominant over a greenish yellow; moderately tough skinned


white

very firm, fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating, culinary

Sept. 2-6

Merits: Tree: early bearer. Fruit: exceptionally non-browning flesh; holds shape well in baking; high levels of Vitamin C.

Faults: Fruit: not favored for fresh eating; several apple taste tests have echoed the comment "tart without much complexity."

Ratings: AA: [no stars]

Special: Mott's valued it enough to negotiate with Cornell for exclusive rights to it, I think for the purpose of developing apple slices or chips as a new snack food. As the new name and increased availability in 2009 indicates, the deal was not completed.

Chestnut Crab
(Malinda X Siberian Crab)
Minnesota
1946


Chestnut Crab

small (but large for a crab)


flatter shape


rich, on the sweet side of sweet-tart

yellow orange with red stripes, some russeting, bloom


yellow

semi-firm, fine-grained, very juicy

Fresh eating, cider, jelly

Sept. 2-6

Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3); annual, good pollinator; resistant to cedar rust. Fruit: prized for cider blending & jelly; very juicy.

Faults: Tree: early blooming makes it susceptible to killing frosts. Fruit: quickly browning flesh.

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally small.

Ratings: AA: ***; Browning; Burford.

Magog Redstreak
(parentage unknown)
Vermont
before 1870

Magog Redstreak

large


flatter shape


mild, sweet-tart, distinctive

red splashed over light yellow, some russet; tough, thin skinned


cream

semi-firm, moderately coarse-grained, very juicy

 

Culinary

Sept. 4-8



Merits: Tree: very hardy (ironclad, to z2).

Faults: Tree: tends toward biennial.

Merit or fault?: Fruit: peculiar flavor liked by some, disliked by others; quality may be good only compared to other hardy trees.

Ratings: AoNY: good; NY1907: _; BC: medium; B-H: fair to good; Bull99: 7-8/X; Bull09: g_; Can: good, commercial value - third class; Hedrick (in 1922): has been on probation for nearly a half a century, but of unquestionable excellence as a culinary apple; Lowther: good; ME94: .../...; Ont: 3/7/5/7; Ragan: [described but not rated]; Waugh: good; Wilkinson: good;

Saint Edmund's Russet
(St. Edmund's Pippin)

(parentage unknown)
UK
before 1870


St. Edmund's Russet

small to medium


flatter shape


rich, sweet, complex

russeting over greenish yellow; thick skinned


pale cream

firm, fine-grained, dry

 

Fresh eating, cider

Sept. 6-12

Merits: Tree: low cost of production; early bearer; resistant to scab and cedar apple rust ; partially self-fertile . Fruit: highly aromatic; non-browning flesh; prized for fresh eating and cider

Faults: Tree: tip bearer (requires special pruning). Fruit: not a good keeper.

Merit or Fault?: Tree: heavy cropper, but thinning required for good sized fruit. Fruit: russet qualities.

Ratings: BC: nr; Browning; Potter; Ragan: not described

Gala
(Kidd's Orange Red x Golden Delicious)
NZ
1934, named in 1965

(the variety we grow is Brookfield Gala, an all-red sport)
Gala

medium


classic apple shape


mild, sweet

The Brookfield strain has red stripes over dominent red and some yellow; moderately thin skinned

yellow

firm, very fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating

Sept. 8-14



Merits: Tree: low cost of production ; crops heavily regularly ; resistant to powdery mildew . Fruit: has become a new standard for sweet fresh eating apples; holds its shape when cooked.

Faults: Tree: very susceptible to scab; requires much thinning for good sized fruit; brittle wood. Fruit: turns mealy when over ripe; too bland when cooked; too bland for good cider; not a good keeper.

Ratings: A21: vg/b; AA: [no stars]; BBG; Y

Special: a new standard for sweet apples, but already seeing a backlash. We discovered only at the first harvest that the red sport Brookfield is less flavorful than the original.

Honeycrisp
(
thought to be Macoun X Honeygold, but may actually be Keepsake, open pollinated)
Minn.
1991

aa al dw ny op st

large


classic apple shape


sprightly, on the sweet side of sweet-tart

red & orange over yellow, dotted; moderately thick skinned


cream

very firm, coarse-grained, moderately dry

 

Fresh eating, cider

not yet fruiting

Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3); annual. Fruit: exceptionally, explosively crisp.

Faults: Tree: slow to mature; susceptible to powdery mildew . Fruit: moderately quick browning, not tart enough or right texture for good cooking or baking .

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally small.

Ratings: A21: vg; AA: *; Browning; Burford; Phillips: "explosively crisp flesh" and "has a honeyed sweetness in its good flavor years"

Special: Minnesota's State Apple. Crispness is due to the rupture or popping its cells that are twice the size of those of other apples.

Mother
(American Mother)
(parentage unknown)
Mass
before 1850

nf op sf st


small to medium


elongated


intense , on the sweet side of sweet-tart, complex

yellow, with red stripes; thin skinned


cream

semi-firm, fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating

Sept. 9-12


Merits: Tree: late blooming protects it from frost damage. Fruit: prized as one of the best tasting fresh eating apples; non-browning flesh; highly aromatic.

Faults: Tree: slow to bear; thinning required for good sized fruit and to prevent biennial bearing. Fruit: not a good keeper.

Merit or fault?: Tree: conflicting reports on resistance to scab. Fruit: almost melting flesh; distinctive flavor

Ratings: AoNY: vg-best; NY1907: * [Tree characters poor. Appearance and quality of the best]; AFC: 14/1 IN+ (rich, very spicy); AP: vg; Baker: NY (20); BC: vg; B-H: best; Browning; BUF; Bull91: 8-9**; Bull09: b*; Burford; Cole: has no superior, and few equals, delightful mingling of sub-acid & saccharine; D: best; Elliot: vg; FB113: NE&; FB208: R(D); Gould: of merit, but largely unknown; Hooper: 2; Keil: "undoubtedly the finest apple of its season" & listed among top summer & fall apples & top for stewing, pie & baking; Lowther: best; ME94: best/**; MI79: best, 8.7.6; Ont: 8/7/6/6; Potter; Ragan: best; Scott: first-rate; Waugh: vg; Wilkinson: best.

Kidd's Orange Red
(Cox's Orange Pippin x Red Delicious)
NZ
1924


Kidd's Orange

medium to large

elongated, slightly ribbed


rich , on the sweet side of sweet-tart

yellow crimson, dotted, occasionally russeting; thick skinned


deep cream

firm, moderately fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating, cider

Sept 9-14



Merits: Tree: annual (if thinned); resistant to scab , very resistant to fireblight. Fruit: very aromatic; very juicy; non-browning flesh

Faults: Tree: susceptible to scab & canker; requires thinning for large sized fruit. Fruit: may be dull colored.

Merit or fault: Tree: slow to bear or precocious (depending on source). Fruit: has tendency to russet

Ratings: A21: vg; Phillips: "Deep aromatic overtones surpass its rich sweetness"; Way; Y.

Special: The first variety that New Zealand apple breeder J.H. Kidd (Gala, Freyberg) thought worthy of further propogation.

Holstein
(Holsteiner Cox)
(Cox's Orange x unknown)
Germany
1918

nf op st

large


flatter shape

rich, on the sweet side of sweet-tart , complex, distinctive

bright red over orange with some yellow ;tough, but moderately thin skinned


deep yellow with tinge of orange

semi-firm, moderately coarse-grained, juicy

Fresh eating, cider

 

Merits: Tree: resistant to scab. Fruit: highly aromatic ; non-browning flesh; prized for fresh eating and cider; shares many qualities of Cox's Orange, but is larger size.

Faults: Tree: biennial; triploid; susceptible to scab and canker. Fruit: subject to cracking.

Ratings: AA: [no stars]; Phillips: "Highly aromatic with a good sugar-acid balance"; Y.

Special: in a Danish five-year study, organically grown Holsteiner Cox was the only variety of 14 that combined high yield, good fruit size and good eating quality with low susceptibility to disease. Ours died in 2014, and we hope to replace.

Antonovka
(parentage unknown)
Russia
before 1750

nf ng

large


flatter shape


sweet-tart, but reports vary on flavor

yellow; tough skinned


creamy yellow

semi-firm, coarse-grained, juicy

Culinary


not yet fruiting

Merits: Tree: very hardy (ironclad, to z2 or 3); moderate to heavy cropper. Fruit: very aromatic; does not bruise easily; good keeper.

Faults: Fruit: not very flavorful; quickly browning flesh.

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally large.

Ratings: AoNY: "of no practical value for this state [Beach later revised rating to "good for dessert use" in northern New York; NY1907: _ [May be of value where superior hardiness is a prime requisite]; BC: good; B-H: good; Bull91: 7_; Bull09: p*; Can: good; FB: T (KM); Ragan: poor

Pitmaston Pine Apple
( parentage unknown, likely an English Golden Pippin seedling)
UK
before 1785


Pitmaston Pine Apple

small


elongated & tapered


sprightly, sweet

golden, russeted; rough, thick skinned


yellow

firm, fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating, cider

Sept. 16-22

Merits: Tree: resistant to scab. Fruit: very juicy; highly aromatic; prized for rich, sweet flavoring in cider.

Faults: Tree: shy to moderate cropper. Fruit: goes mealy quickly

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally small. Fruit: russet qualities; small; subject to sweet water core [provides special burst of flavor, but lead to decay at core].

Ratings: AA: [no stars]; BC: nr; Ragan: [described but not rated; Scott: 1; Y.

Redfield
(Wolf River x Niedzwetzskayana Red Crab)
NY
1938


Redfield

medium


classic apple shape


rich, tart, moderately
astringent

waxy-pink to red

white & red

semi-firm, moderately fine-grained, moderately dry

Culinary, especially baking; cider-blending

Sept.16-22




Merits: Tree: very hardy (ironclad, to z2 or 3); bronze leaves and red blossoms qualify it as an ornamental; high resistance to disease and pests. Fruit: red juice, excellent for colorful cider blending; makes good tasting, eye catching pies.

Faults: Tree: not highly productive. Fruit: quickly browning flesh

Merit or fault?: not recommended for fresh eating

Rating: Burford.

Special: The pinkest apple seed I've ever seen was from an underripe Redfield.pink Redfield seed

King of the Pippins
(Reine de Reinettes [or possibly not], Golden Winter Pearmain, Frogstar)

(parentage unknown)
UK
before 1800

King of the Pippins

small to medium

somewhat elongated, sometimes lopsided


mild, sweet-tart , complex

red and orange stripes dominant over yellow; thick skinned


greenish pale cream

firm, fine-grained, moderately dry

 

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Sept 16-22





 

Merits: Tree: certain & abundant cropper; grows well in many different soils; resistant to scab. Fruit: highly aromatic; rich flavor; prized for nutty character in cider blending.

Faults: Fruit: quickly browning flesh.

Merit or fault?: Tree: heavy cropper, but much thinning required for good sized fruit and to prevent biennial bearing; distinctive, sharp flavor does not appeal to everyone.

Ratings: AA: ***, BC: nr; Elliott: unworthy; HSL: 2; Prince; Ragan: g; Scott: 1; UIll: g-vg; VT.

Special: King of the Pippins may be the name of several unrelated apples. It may or may not be identical to the Clarke Pearmain grown at Monticello. The English Reine de Reinettes (King of the Pippins) may be the same as or different from a Dutch Reine des Reinettes (Queen of the Pippins). The King of the Pippins also known as Golden Winter Pearmain may or may not be the same apple as the King of the Pippins currently being propogated. There is further speculation that Reinette is a pun on Rainette, or little frog, because of those apples' thick, spotted skins, or derived from "renatus" or renewed, meaning grafted, not grown from seed.

Jonagold
(was NY 43013-1)

(Jonathan x Golden Delicious)
NY
1968


Jonagold

large

classic apple shape


rich, on the sweet side of sweet-tart

yellow with red stripes; red may or may not be prominent; tender skinned
yellowish-white

firm, moderately coarse-grained, very juicy
Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Sept 16-22





Merits: Tree: low cost of production; heavy cropper of large fruit; somewhat resistant to scab; little pre-harvest drop. Fruit: highly aromatic; non-browning flesh; prized for multiple purposes.

Faults: Tree: triploid (does not pollinate); susceptible to powdery mildew; subject to winter injury. Fruit: soft texture in some climates.

Ratings: A21: vg/b; AA: [no stars]; BBG; Browning; Burford; Way; Y.

Special: finished first among "The World's Best Commercial Dessert Apples," in a poll of 19 apple experts in 1989. Coming to prominence in Europe before North America, it has become a new standard for fresh eating.

Redflesh
(Hansen's Red Flesh)

(
Niedzwetzkyana x Elk River)
South Dakota
introduced 1928

ng



crab


elongated


astringent

red; thin skinned


red flesh through-out

firm, coarse-grained, moderately dry

Cider-blending, jelly

not yet fruiting

Merits: Tree: hardy (to z4); beautiful red buds and pink flowers; greenish bronze foliage. Fruit: rich in health-beneficial anthocyanins

Faults: Tree: biennial; highly susceptible to scab. Fruit: good for jellies, sauces, and cider.

Merit or fault?: Fruit: Principally an ornamental flowering crab.

Special: Although Roger Way (Cornell, 1992) called it inedible, Maine pomologist Donald Wyman rated it among the best crabs for flower and best for fruit in 1950.

Twenty Ounce
(Cayuga Redstreak)

(parentage unknown)
NY
before 1840

ny

very large


roundish, but asymmetric


mild, on the tart side of sweet-tart

greenish yellow, splashed and striped with some red; thick, tough skinned


yellow

firm, coarse-grained, moderately juicy

 

Culinary, especially baking Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3); low cost of production; bears early & abundantly; bears fruits of uniform large size; fruits hold well to tree. Fruit: excellent keeper for ripening so early; does not bruise easily; premier pie & baking apple.

Faults: Tree: subject to sun scald, canker, & winter injury. Fruit: not favored for fresh eating.

Merit or fault?: Tree: limbs droop rather than spread.

Ratings: AoNY: good for culinary, 2nd rate for fresh; NY1907: ** [One of the best of the fall varieties]; NY1914: g/**; NY1916: 8; AFC: 14/2 NY (second quality); AP: good; BC: good; B-H: good; Bull91: 6-7**; Bull09: gvg*; Can; dessert poor, cooking good, commercial value - first to seond class; FB208: HR(KM); FB1001: D2; F&T: $ (1 region [WNY]); Hooper: 2; ME94: vg/*; MI79: good, 5.7.9; Ont: 2/8/7/8; Prince [under Cayuga Redstreak]; Ragan: g-vg
; Scott: 2; Waugh: fair; Wilkinson: g to vg/*

Variety

Origin & Date

Image Sources

Fruit Uses Merits & Faults

Ratings

Size,
Shape
& Flavor
Color & Texture
of Skin
& Flesh

Jefferis
(Jefferies)

(unknown)
Pennsylvania
before 1840

ea nf ng sf st

medium


classic shape


rich, on the sweet side of sweet-tart

light, dark and orangy reds over yellow-green, occasional trace of russeting, thin skinned


pale cream

semi-firm, fine-grained, moderately dry

Fresh eating, culinary

not yet fruiting

Merits: Tree: hardy (to z4); early bearing; very prolific; annual; resistant to scab & powdery mildew. Fruit: highly aromatic .

Faults: Fruit: not a good keeper.

Merit or fault?: Tree: fruit ripens over long season; naturally very large .

Ratings: AoNY:vg; AFC: (very pleasant); AP: best; B-H: vg; Bull91: 8-9/**; Bull09: vgb**; Burford; FB113: NE&; FB208: HR(D); F&T: H (0 regions); Gould: of merit; Keil: among top 9 summer and fall apples &among top for pie; MI79: vg, 9.6.6; Scott: 1.

Special: In his Report of the Pomologist to the US Commissioner of Agriculture, 1888, Henry E. Van Deman stated, "If I should be asked to select the  choicest early autumn apple known to me, I would say the Jefferies."

Rambo
(Winter Rambo, Romanite, Bread and Cheese)
(parentage unknown)
Delaware or Pa.
before 1700

medium


distinctively flatter shape


rich, on the sweet side of sweet-tart , complex, distinctive

pale greenish yellow mottled & streaked with dull red; thin but tough skinned


yellow

firm, moderately fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider, jelly

not yet fruiting


 

 

Merits: Tree: grows well in many different soils; bears fruits uniform in shape and size; very productive. Fruit: praised for its wonderful, distinctive aroma; highly aromatic; prized for fresh eating and cooking; does not bruise easily; long keeping for a fall apple .

Faults: Tree: biennial; slow to bear; of questionable hardiness in northern climate; brittle wood; subject to winter injury. Fruits: variable skin coloring; red does not always develop well

Merit or fault?: Tree: heavy cropper, but much thinning required for good sized fruit. Fruit: subject to sweet water core; distinctive flavor.

Ratings: AoNY: g/vg, particularly desirable for dessert; NY1907: _ [Tender tree; productive to a fault; excellent quality.]; AFC 17/1 PA, IN+,IN-,VA (fine flavor, often excellent); AP: vt; Baker: NJ (20), PA (20), KY, OH, IL; BC: nr; B-H: vg; BUF; Bull1891: 5-6*; Bull99: 7-8*; Bull09: vg*;  Burford; Can; dessert vg, cooking good, commercial value - third class; Cole: one of the finest; D: vg; Elliott: has no superior; FB113: NE&; FB208: R(DM);  F&T: ^ (0 regions); Gould: a Pa. standby with much to recommend it; Hooper: 1; HSL: 2: Keil: listed among top varieties for sauce, baking & jelly; Lear: 10; Lewelling; Lowther: vg; MI79: vg, 7.5.4; Ont:5/1/2/5; Prince; Ragan: vg; Scott: 1; UIll: vg; Unimpeachable; VT; Waugh: good; Wilkinson: vg.

Special: First grown by the Rambo family that originated in New Sweden. If grown from seed brought over from Sweden in 1630, could rival the Roxbury Russet for the title "oldest American" variety; favorite apple of Hoosier poet James Whitcomb Riley, who wrote an ode to the Rambo and mentioned it by name in four other poems. I n Varieties of Apples in Ohio (1915), "little old-fashioned Rambo" was said to have been "found in almost every old orchard in Ohio." Patrick Berry in 1857 wrote that the Rambo was "popular over a greater extent of the country than anhy other variety." Falsely claimed to be favorite apple of Johnny Appleseed; John Chapman, for religious reasons, shunned all grafted varieties.

Keepsake
(MN 447 [Malinda open pollinated] X Northern Spy)
Minn. 1936, released 1979

keepsake

small to medium


irregularly shaped


sprightly, on the sweet side of sweet-tart, complex

red stripes over yellow; slight bloom; thick skinned.


creamy yellow

firm, coarse-grained, moderately juicy

Fresh eating, culinaryr

Sept. 22-25

Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3); annual; somewhat resistant to fire blight, scab & cedar apple rust ; fruits tolerate fall frosts and mild freezes. Fruit: non-browning flesh; excellent keeper.

Faults: Tree: somewhat of a shy bearer. Fruit: not pretty.

Ratings: A21: g/vg; BBG; Burford; Y.

Hewes
(Virginia Crab)

Virginia
before 1770

cf ng

Hewes blossom

small


roundish


intense, tart, moderately
astringent

yellow red, prominently dotted


yellow tinged with red

tender, fine-grained, juicy

Cider, jelly

not yet fruiting

 

Merits: Tree: hardy (to z4); heavy cropper; good pollenator. Fruit: prized for tartness in cider blending.

Faults: Fruit: can turn dry and mealy quickly; quickly browning flesh .

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally small.

Rating: AP: best; Bull97: 2*; Bull09: g*; Browning; Burford; FB: R(C); Prince [under Hughes Virginia in list of cider apples ]; UIll: good only for cider.

Special: Thomas Jefferson's recommended apple for cider

LATE SEPTEMBER TO EARLY OCTOBER

Variety

Origin & Date

Image Sources

Fruit Uses Merits & Faults

Ratings

Size,
Shape
& Flavor
Color & Texture
of Skin
& Flesh

Liberty
(Macoun X PRI 54-12)
NY
introduced 1962


Liberty

small to medium


classic apple shape, but
variable


mild, on the sweet side of sweet-tart

red very dominant over yellow, slight bloom; thin skinned


white

semi-firm, coarse-grained, juicy

 

Fresh eating, culinary, especially sauces; ciderg

Sept 27-Oct1





Merits: Tree: low cost of production; annual; heavy cropper; very resistant to disease. Fruit: highly aromatic; considered by many to be highest quality of the varieties bred for disease resistance.

Faults: Tree: may drop fruit prematurely; somewhat susceptible to powdery mildew. Fruit: has milder flavor than its non-disease-resistant parents; goes mealy & mushy quickly when overripe .

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally large.

Ratings: A21: vg; AA: **; BBG; Burford; Y.

Striped Harvey
(parentage unknown)
Maine
before 1800


medium


classic apple shape


sprightly, tart

red stripes over yellow


yellow

firm, moderately fine-grained, moderately juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3). Fruit: rich, well blended flavor; excellent keeper.

Ratings: Ragan: listed as Harvey Stripe, but not described nor rated.

Detroit Red
(Grand Sachem, Detroit Black)

(parentage unknown)
colonial French Canada
before 1790

ea

medium to very large


flatter shape, ribbed


mild, on the tart side of sweet-tart
glossy deep purple or black over dark red, prominently dotted; tough thick skinned
white, occasionally stained with red

tender, coarse-grained, juicy
Culinary, cider

not yet fruiting

Merits: Tree: hardy (to z4). Fruit: very aromatic.

Faults: Tree: may drop fruit prematurely.

Merit or fault?: Tree: called both productive and unproductive . Fruit: great variability in size and color

Ratings: AFC: (agreeable); AP: good?; MI79: good, 6.4.2 or 4.3.1; [Note: the confusion between the Detroit Red, Detroit Black, and Red Detroit makes ratings uncertain]

Special: planted by Thomas Jefferson at Monticello; may be a parent of the Macintosh; twice finished at the bottom of the top 20 in taste tests held by Tom Burford at Monticello.

Macoun
(Macintosh X Jersey Black)
NY
introduced 1962

aa al nf ny op st

small to medium


classic apple shape


intense, subacid, comnplex

dark red over greenish yellow, slight bloom, prominently dotted; thin skinned


white

semi-firm, coarse-grained, juicy

 

Fresh eating, culinary, cider



Merits: Tree: annual; heavy cropper; very resistant to fire blight ; may drop fruit prematurely. Fruit: aromatic; very crisp; good for multiple purposes.

Faults: Tree: susceptible to powdery mildew. Fruit: poor keeper .

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally large. Fruit: slightly coarse flesh; optimum flavor develops after storage.

Ratings: A21: vg; AA: ***; BBG; Burford; Way; Y.

Special: has developed a cult following in the northeast. Pronounce the name as you like -- I've heard it both McCowan and McCoon by authorities with Cornell-Geneva connections (where it was developed)

King of Tompkins County
(King, Tompkins King)

(parentage unknown)
NY
before 1800


King of Tompkins County

 

large to very large


roundish, slightly ribbed


rich, on the sweet side of sweet-tart

yellow orange red, with bloom; smooth, moderately thick skin.


yellow

semi-firm, moderately coarse-grained,  juicy

Fresh eating; culinary, especially baking; ciderg

Sept. 28-Oct. 6





Merits: Tree: annual; naturally spreading; very resistant to scab. Fruit: highly aromatic.

Faults: Tree: triploid (does not pollinate; although has some self-fertility) slow to bear; may drop fruit prematurely; wood can be brittle; susceptible to mildew & scab; subject to collar rot. Fruit: waxy skin becomes greasy in storage.

Merit or fault?: Tree: partial tip bearer (pruning challenge). Fruit: subject to sweet water core. 

Ratings: AoNY: vg/b; NY1907: **; NY1914: vg-b/**; NY1916: 4; AFC: 16/1 NY, WNY (rich, high flavor); AA: [no stars]: AP: vg; Baker: NY (12), IL; B-H: vg/b; Bull97: 8-9**; Bull09: vg**; Burford; CG: 42/18/23/83; Can; dessert vg, cooking vg, commercial value - first class; D: vg-b; FB113: NE*&; FB208: HR(DM); FB1001: D13; F&T: ^$H (0 regions);  Keil: listed among top varieties for sauce & jelly. Lear: 8; Lowther: vg; Lewelling; ME94: vg/*; MI79: vg, 7.6.6; MI90: vg, 7.6.7; Ont: 8/10/10/10; Ragan: vg-b; Scott: 1; Waugh: vg; Way; Wilkinson: vg; Y.

Special: once fourth leading apple variety grown in New York State. My Dad's favorite apple from his youth.

Variety

Origin & Date

Image Sources

Fruit Uses

Merits & Faults

Ratings

Size,
Shape
& Flavor
Color & Texture
of Skin
& Flesh

Briggs Auburn
(parentage unknown)
Me.
before 1850

Briggs Auburn

large


flatter shape


mild, on the sweet side of sweet-tart

yellow, blushed; tough skinned


creamy white

semi-firm, moderately coarse-grained, moderately juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, especially sauces

Sept. 30-Oct. 5



Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3); annual; moderate to heavy cropper. Fruit: good keeper; does not bruise easily; regionally prized for fresh eating.

Faults: Fruit: not highly regarded for cooking or baking .

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally large.

Rating: AP: vg; ME08: vg; Ragan: good

Yellow Bellflower
(Yellow Belle Fleur)
(parentage unknown)
NJ
before 1800


Yellow Bellflower

 

medium to v. large


distinctively elongated,
ribbed


rich, on the tart side of sweet-tart

pale yellow with brownish red blush; thin, tender skinned


yellowish white

firm, moderately fine-grained, moderately dry

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Sept. 30-Oct. 5



Merits: Tree: low cost of production; very resistant to fire blight. Fruit: valued for multiple purposes; prized for the zing it can bring to cider blends.

Faults: Tree: slow grower; shy cropper; bears fruits variable in size; may drop fruit prematurely; susceptible to scab; quality variable due to soil. Fruit: bruises easily; quickly browning flesh.

Merit or fault?: Tree: somewhat spreading and drooping. Fruit: quite tart when first picked [ideal for baking], but mellows and sweetens in storage.

Ratings: AoNY: vg/b; NY1907: *; NY1914: g/*; AFC: 13/2 NY,IN+,IN-,VA (excellent); AP: best; BC: good; Baker: RI (20), CG: 40/18/18/78CT (12), NJ (12), KY, IL, MI90; B-H: vg or best; Bull91: 7-8**; Bull99: 8-9*; Bull09: vg*; Burford; Can: dessert good, cooking good, commercial value - home market first class; D: vg; FB113: &; FB208: R(DKM); FB1001: D14; F&T: ^ (0 regions); Hooper: 1; HSL: 1; Lear: 10; Lowther: vg; Lewelling; ME94: vg/**; MI79: vg, 8.10.7; MI90: vg, 8.10.7; Ont:8/7/5/5; Prince; Ragan: vg; Scott: 1; Unimpeachable; Waugh: vg; Y.

Smokehouse
(thought to be Vandevere open pollenated )
Pa.
1837

Smokehouse

large


somewhat flatter shape


mild, on the sweet side of sweet-tart

dull red, yellow, dotted; tough, but thin skinned


yellow

semi-firm, fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Sept. 30-Oct. 3



Merits: Tree: annual; early bearer; holds fruit well; resistant to fireblight. Fruit: does not bruise easily; excellent keeper; prized as a multi-purpose apple; prized a cider base.

Faults: Tree: susceptible to apple scab; early blooming subjects it to late frosts. Fruit: variable skin coloring; red does not always develop well; flavor described as too mild in some taste tests; can go mealy.

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally large; crooked growth and dense head provide extra pruning challenge; heavy cropper, but thinning required for large sized fruit.

Ratings: AA: *: AoNY: good; NY1907: _; AFC: PA,VA (fine): AP: good?; Baker: PA (6); BBG; BC: good; B-H: good; Bull1897: 5-6**; Bull99: 6-7/*; Bull09: g*; D: g; Burford; FB113: NE; FB208: R(K); FB1001: D3; F&T: ^ (0 regions); Gould: none better in its season; Hooper: 2 to 1; Lowther: good; MI79: g, 5.7.8; Ont: 3/6/4/6; Prince; Ragan: g; Scott: 1; Waugh: fair

Special: Winner of the 2014 Sage Hen Farm Apple Taste Test.

Hudson's Golden Gem
(parentage unknown)
Oregon
discovered 1930

aa al dw sf st


 

large


elongated & tapered


intense, sweet, complex

fully russeted gold over green; thick rough skin
pale yellow

firm, moderately coarse-grained, very juicy
Fresh eating, cider-blending

not yet fruiting



Merits: Tree: annual; resistant to scab & mildew; moderately resistant to fire blight. Fruit: does not bruise easily; excellent keeper; aromatic; hangs well on tree for long time.

Faults: Fruit: splits when tree is young.

Merit or Fault?: Tree: reports differ from heavy cropper to shy bearer. Fruit: russet qualities.

Ratings: AA: *; BBG; Burford; Phillips: "Pear-like qualities:  rich, nutty, cloyingly sweet with an unusual crunchy texture"; Y.

OCTOBER

Variety

Origin & Date

Image Sources

Fruit Uses

Merits & Faults

Ratings

Size,
Shape
& Flavor
Color & Texture
of Skin
& Flesh

Roxbury Russet
(Boston Russet)

(parentage unknown)
Mass.
before 1650
[1st recorded North American cultivar]

RoxburyRoxbury

med-large


classic apple shape, but irregular, slightly ribbed


mild, on the sweet side of sweet-tart

green brown russet; rough, thick skinned


cream

firm, moderately coarse-grained, moderately juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Oct. 1-15

 


Merits: Tree: resistant to scab & cedar apple rust. Fruit: prized for rich flavoring & high sugar content for cider; excellent keeper.

Faults: Tree: biennial ; triploid (does not pollinate) ; often a shy bearer; quality variable due to soil and climate; wood may become brittle; may drop fruit prematurely. Fruit: subject to cracking; quickly browning flesh.

Merit or fault?: Fruit: russet quality; coarse flesh; does not bruise easily, but tough skin.

Ratings: AA: *; AoNY: g/vg; NY1907: **; NY1914: g-vg/**; NY1916: 4; AFC: 15/6 ME,NY,PA (not of highest flavor); AP: good?; Baker: NY (6), MA (12), RI (6), RI (6), NJ (6), MI90; BC: nr; A21: g/vg; B-H: g-vg; BBG; Browning; Bull91: 7-8**; Bull99: 6-7/**; Bull09:gvg**; Burford; Can: dessert only fair, cooking good, commercial value - first class; D: g-vg; FB113: NE*&; FB208: HR(KM); F&T: ^ (0 regions); Keil: listed among top 6 winter varieties for dessert;  Lowther: vg; Hooper: 3 for table, 1 to 2 for cooking; HSL: 2; ME94: vg/*; MI79: vg, 6.9.7; MI90: vg, 6.9.7; NE11; Ont: 6/8/8/9; Phillips: "a wonderful sweet-sour balance. Lots of flavor, rich and aromatic; just juicy enough"; Prince; Ragan: g/vg; Scott: 1; Waugh: good; Wilkinson: g to vg; Y

Special: discovered in the town of Roxbury in mid-17th century, it may be the oldest named American variety. It has better documentation to the claim than does the Rambo. Once fifth leading apple variety grown in New York State.

Rhode Island Greening
(parentage unknown)
RI
before 1650


Rhode Island Greening

large


flatter shape


sprightly , tart

grass green with late developing yellow tinge & occasional bright cheek, dotted, slight bloom; moderately thick skinned


greenish cream

firm, moderately fine-grained, juic

Culinary, especially baking; cider

Oct. 1-8


Merits: Tree: reliably heavy cropper; bears fruits uniform in shape and large size; long lived; resistant to scab. Fruit: very juicy; aromatic; keeps well even in less than ideal conditions (except for some scalding).

Faults: Tree: triploid (does not pollinate), slow to mature; biennial; may drop fruit prematurely; susceptible to scab, powdery mildew, and fire blight. Fruit: bruises easily; can be astringent .

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally very large, spreading & drooping, may have crooked growth.

Ratings: AA: *; AoNY: vg; NY1907: **; NY1914: vg/**; NY1916: 2; A21: vg; AFC: 16/9 ME, MA,NY,WNY,PA (rich, rather acid flavor); AP: vg; Baker: NY (6), ME (8), MA (12), RI (12), CT (6), NJ (6), PA (12), No. OH, MI90; B-H: vg; BBG; BUF; Bull91: 7**; Bull99: 7-8/**; Bull09: vg**; Burford; CG: 38/19/20/77; Can: dessert fair, cooking best, commercial value - best; D: vg; FB113: NE*; FB208: HR(DKM); FB1001: D2,13; F&T: *$H (5 regions); Hooper: 1 (but variable with location); Keil: listed among top varieties for stewing & pies; Lowther: vg; Lewelling; ME94: vg/**; MI79: vg, 8.10.8; MI90: vg, 9.10.9; NE1; Ont: 8/10/8/8; Phillips: "One of the best cooking varieties available"; Scott: 1; Waugh: good; Wilkinson: vg; Unimpeachable; Y.

Special: once second leading apple variety grown in New York State and New England.

Golden Russet
(possibly English Russet seedling)
NY before 1750

Golden Russet

medium to large
classic apple shape

sprightly, sweet, complex

yellow russet; rough, tough, thick skinned

cream

firm, coarse-grained, moderately juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Oct. 1-12

Merits: Tree: annual; heavy cropper; some resistance to scab and cedar apple rust; bears fruit of uniform large size; fruits tolerate fall frosts and mild freezes. Fruit: does not bruise easily; excellent keeper; highly aromatic; prized as one of few varieties recommended for unblended cider; high in sugar and Vitamin C.

Faults: Tree: tip bearer; since blooms early but requires long season, can be challenged by frost in both spring & fall. Fruit: not pretty; quickly browning flesh.

Merit or fault?: Fruit: russet quality.

Ratings: AA: **; AoNY: vg/b; NY1907: *; NY1914: vg/*; NY1916: 8; AFC: 11/2 NY,WNY, WI, IN-, NC (rich); AP: very best; Baker: PA (6); BBG; BC: vg; B-H: best; Browning; BUF; Bull91: 5-6/** or 8-9/*, depending on similarly named varieties; Bull09: b* or gb** , depending on similarly named varieties; Burford; Can; dessert fair, cooking good, commercial value - first class; D: best; FB113: &; FB208: HR(DM); F&T: ^ (0 regions); Hooper: 1; Lowther: vg; Lewelling; ME94: vg/*; MI79: vg, 8.5.9; MI90: vg, 9.5.10; Ont: 9/8/8/9; Prince; Ragan: g/b; Scott: 1; Waugh: fair; Way; Wilkinson: g/b; Y.

Special: There were several apples called Golden Russet a century ago. The Golden Russet around today seems to be the one called the Golden Russet of Western New York. 

Hubbardston Nonesuch
(parentage unknown)
Mass.
before 1830


Hubbardston Nonesuch

large


flatter shape

sprightly, on the sweet side of sweet-tart

bright red and maroon over yellow, dotted, some russet; rough, thick skinned.


pale cream

semi-firm, fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating, cider

Oct. 1-8

Merits: Tree: early bearer; heavy cropper; annual. Fruit: prized for fresh eating & cider; natural gloss gives handsome appearance; non-browning flesh; very juicy; good keeper.

Faults: Tree: thinning required for good sized fruit & to prevent biennial bearing; susceptible to winter injury; subject to collar rot; may drop fruit prematurely. Fruit: skin can become greasy; not prized for pies or other baking; loses flavor in storage.

Ratings: AA: *; AoNY: vg to best; NY1907: **; NY1914: vg-b/**; NY1916: 7; AFC: 18/6 ME,NY (very rich, excellent); AP: vg; Baker: MA (6), NJ (12), MI79: best, 9.5.9; MI90: best, 10.5.9; BC: nr; B-H: vg; BUF; Bull97: 8-9**; Bull09: vg**; Burford; Can: vg, commercial value - first class; CG: 37/20/20/77; Cole: excellent; D: vg-b; FB113: NE; FB208: HR(DM); NE14; F&T: ^ (0 regions); Lowther: vg; ME94: vg/**; MI90: b, 10.5.9; Ont: 7/8/8/8; Prince; Ragan: vg; Scott: 1; UIll: vg; Waugh: vg; Wilkinson: vg; Y.

Calville Blanc d'Hiver
(White Winter Calville, Rambour à Côtes Gros)
(parentage unknown)
France
before 1600

Calville Blanc

medium


elongated, prominently ribbed; often misshaped


intense, sweet, spicy, complex, distinctive

pale yellow tinged with green, with faint blush; prominently dotted where exposed to sun; smooth skinned


yellowish-white

semi-firm, moderately fine-grained, dry

Fresh eating, cider

Oct. 5-12

 

Merits: Tree: late blooming protects it from frost damage. Fruit: very aromatic; non-browning flesh; very high in Vitamin C.

Faults: Tree: slow to bear, slower to bear good quality fruit; shy bearer. Fruit: tender skin.

Merit or Fault: Tree: naturally small. Fruit: ripens over several weeks; odd shape; can look blemished when it is not; optimum flavor develops after storager.

Ratings: A21: vg; AA: [no stars]; AP: poor; BBG; BC: good; Elliott: unworthy; Browning; HSL: 2; Prince; Ragan: p; Scott: 1; Y.

Special: grown by Jefferson at Monticello, painted by Monet.

Connell Red
(Red Fireside)

(thought to be red sport of Fireside (McIntosh x Longfield)), but may be open pollenated Fireside) discovered in Wisc.
1956

ea

very large to huge


classic apple shape


rich, on the sweet side of sweet-tart

red, with waxy bloom; moderately thick skinned.


white

firm, fine-grained, moderately juicy

 

Fresh eating

not yet fruiting




Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3); low cost of production; heavy cropper; fruits tolerate fall frosts and mild freezes; resistant to scab, cedar apple rust and fireblight. Fruit: very aromatic; prized for fresh eating & cider; good keeper.

Faults: Tree: triploid (does not pollinate). Fruit: subject to cracking; quickly browning flesh: skin can become greasy.

Merit or fault: Tree: usually, but unreliably annual.

Rating: top pick at taste test held at Cooperative Extension in Ithaca, 2007.

Ashmead's Kernel
(parentage unknown)
UK
before 1700


Ashmead's Kernel

small to medium
classic apple shape, but irregular
intense, sweet-tart, complex, distinctive
yellow russet; rough, thick skinned

creamy white

semi-firm, coarse-grained, juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Oct. 5-8




Merits: Tree: resistant to scab, powdery mildew. Fruit: very crisp; very juicy; highly aromatic; prized for tartness in cider blends.

Faults: Tree: slow to bear; thinning required to prevent biennial bearing ; triploid (does not pollinate) ; often a shy bearer. Fruit: quickly browning flesh

Merit or fault?: russet qualities.

Ratings: A21:vg-b; AA: ***; BBG; BC: nr; HSL: 2; Phillips: "Each bite offers an intense aromatic sting of sharp and sweet"; Potter; Ragan: good; Scott: 1; Y.

Haralson
(Malinda x Wealthy)
Minn
1913, introduced 1923

Haralson

medium


somewhat elongated


mild, evenly balanced

red & red stripes over yellow, dotted; moderately thick skinned


white

firm, coarse-grained, moderately juciy

 

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Oct. 5-8

Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3); early bearer, heavy cropper of good sized fruit; resistant to fireblight. Fruit: aromatic.

Faults: Tree: susceptible to cedar-apple rust &scab. Fruit: subject to cracking & russeting; for a late ripening variety, it does not keep well.

Merit or fault: Tree: heavy cropper, but thinning required for good sized fruit and to prevent biennial bearing. Fruit: cracking common in first years of harvest; flavor best after fruit ripens over several weeks; subject to sweet water core [provides special burst of flavor, but lead to decay at core].

Ratings [for Haralred]: A21: g/vg; BBG; Burford; FB1001: D1; Y.

Red Canada
(Canada Red, 
Steele's Winter Red, Old Nonsuch, Richfield, Welch's Spitzenberg [and many others])

(unknown)
Connecticut or Massachusetts,
early 1800s

small to medium to large


classic apple shape


rich, on the sweet side of sweet-tart

dark red striping over yellow with a deep red blush, prominently dotted; smooth, tough .


greenish cream

firm, fine-grained, moderately juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

not yet fruiting

Merits: Tree: can very productive, annual, naturally spreading. Fruit: very aromatic; excellent keeper (best keeper on a few lists); at its best, rivals the best for top honors in flavor

Faults: Tree: requires rich, strong soil; not reliable every year. Fruit: tends to shrivel in storage.

Merit or fault?: Tree: varies much in different seasons and in different localities -- although listed as very productive, some trees can be shy. Fruit: can range from "one of the best apples of its season" to "decidedly inferior." -- Beach

Ratings: AA: *; AoNY: g to b; AFC: (rich, high, excellent flavor); AP: abest; Bull91: 8-9*; Bull09:vg*; Can: good; Cole: fair to excellent; Dowling: vg-b (best winter); Eliott: one of the most valuable; FB113: NE; FB208: HR(DM); FB1001: D2; F&T: ^ (0 regions); Hooper: 1; D: vg-b; Keil: listed among top varieties for pies & jelly; ME94: b; MI79: best, 7.8.10; MI90: vg, 8.5.10; Ragan: vg; Scott: 1.

Westfield Seek No Further
(Westfield, Seeknofurther, Seek)
(parentage unknown)
Mass.
before 1800

aa nf sf st

medium


classic shape, but irregular; slightly ribbed


rich, sweet with some astringency, complex, distinctive

red stripes over deep yellow tinged with green, splashed with dull red, dotted, often covered with blue bloom; russeting possible

white tinged with yellow

tender, fine-grained, moderately dry

Fresh eating, cider-blending

Oct. 8-12

Merits: Tree: heavy cropper. Fruit: fresh; prized for sweet/sharp kick it provides in cider blending;  good keeper

Faults: Tree: very slow to bear. Fruit: variable skin coloring; red does not always develop well ; not recommended for cooking; doesn't keep well

Merit or fault: Tree: called both a heavy cropper and "somewhat lacking in productivity." Fruit: has unique aroma; distinct taste (too astringent for some)

Ratings: AA: **; AoNY: vg/b; NY1907: *; NY1916: l/sp; AFC: 11/1 NY,IN+ (rich & spicy, fine flavor); AP: good; Baker: NJ (20), OH; BC: nr; B-H: vg or best; BUF; Bull97: 8-9/*; Bull99: 8-9**; Bull09: vgb*; Burford; Can: dessert vg, cooking fair, commercial value - first class when well grown; D: vg or best; FB113: NE; FB208:    HR(DM); F&T: ^ (0 regions); Lewelling; ME94: best/*; MI79: best, 7.3.5; MI90: best; UIll: vg/b (one of 17 of "greatest promise for general usefulness"); Ont: 7/7/7/8; Prince [under New England Seeknofurther]; Ragan: vg-b; Waugh: vg; Wilkinson: vg/b; Y.

Esopus Spitzenberg
(parentage unknown)
NY
before 1790

Esopus Spitzenburg

med-large


blocky, slightly ribbed


intense, sweet-tart ; complex

dark red stripes over red, dominant over some yellow, prominently dotted, slight bloom; tough skinned.


deep cream

very firm, fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Oct. 5-8

Merits: Tree: bears fruit of uniform size; once among top ten leading apple varieties grown in New York State. Fruit: unexcelled in rich, spicy, exceedingly high flavor; called equally good for dessert or cooking; attractive in shape & color; does not bruise easily; non-browning flesh

Faults: Tree: slow to bear; biennial; shy bearer ; may drop fruit prematurely ; susceptible to canker, scab & fire blight; quality variable due to soil and climate -- requires rich, fertile soil .

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally small; fruit ripens unevenly. Fruit: flavor best after fruit ripens over several weeks; distinctive flavor; subject to sweet water core.

Ratings: AA: **; AoNY: vg/b; NY1907: * [** in some other regions]; NY1914: vg-b/**; AFC NY (nearly unequaled); AP: best; Baker: CG: 48/24/23/96; CT (12), OH, MI; B-H: best; BBG; BC: vg; Browning; BUF; Bull1897: 10*; Bull99: 10**; Bull09: vgb**; Burford; Can: first class for all purposes; D: best (unsurpassed); FB113: NE&; FB208: HR(D); F&T: ^$H (0 regions); HSL: 2; Lowther: best; A21: vg/b;  Hooper: 1 to 2; Lewelling; ME94: best/*; MI79: NE24; Ont: 9/7/9?10; Phillips: "Sweet and nutty, with spicy aromatic flavors more commonly associated with European apples, backed by a lively acidity"; Prince; Ragan: b; Scott: 1; Unimpeachable; Waugh: best; Way; Wilkinson: vg/b; Y.

Special: planted by T. Jefferson, Washington Irving & G. Washington. Rather than being Thomas Jefferson's favorite apple, this may be the one that frustrated him the most.

Baldwin
(Woodpecker)

(parentage unknown)
Mass.
before 1740

Baldwin

large


classic apple shape


rich, sweet-tart

multiple shades of red stripes & mottling, dominant over yellow; tough skinned


greenish cream

firm, moderately coarse-grained, very juicy

Fresh eating; culinary, especially baking; cider

Oct. 5-8


Merits: Tree: heavy cropper; long lived; grows well on a variety of soils; bears fruit of uniform large size; once leading apple variety grown in New York & other northern states. Fruit:  very aromatic; excellent keeper; does not bruise easily; attractive in shape & color; prized for quality for multiple purposes; revered for excellence as cider base.

Faults: Tree: slow to bear; more strictly biennial than most other varieties; triploid (does not pollinate); below average for Northern tree in hardiness; subject to winter damage; thinning advised to avoid limb breakage; susceptible to scab & powdery mildew .

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally large.

Ratings: AA: **; AoNY: good to vg; NY1907: **; NY1914: g-vg/**; NY1916: 1; AFC: 16/9 ME, MA, NY, WNY, PA (first rate); AP; good; Baker: NY (6), MA (6), RI (6), NJ (6), PA (6), OH; BBG; BC: good; BUF; Bull97: 5-6**; Bull09: vg**; B-H: vg; Burford; CG: 40/20/22/82; Can: dessert fair, cooking good, commercial value - first class; D: vg; FB113: NE*; FB208: HR(KM); FB1001: D2; F&T: *$H (5 regions); Hooper: 1 (where it succeeds); HSL: 1; Keil: listed among top varieties for stewing, pies & baking; Lear: 9; Lowther: vg; Lewelling; ME94: vg/**; MI79: vg, 6.9.10; MI90: vg, 6.9.10; NE3; Ont: 2/5/7/8; Prince; Ragan: vg; Unimpeachable; Waugh: fair; Wilkinson: vg; Y.

Special: America's first dominant commercial variety (for more than 75 years).

King David
(Winesap x Arkansas Black or open pollinated one or the other)
Ark.
before 1890

King David

medium


classic apple shape


very rich, sprightly, spicy, complex flavors

dark glossy red very dominant over hint of green; tough, thin skinned

yellow

semi-firm, fine-grained, very juicy

Fresh eating; culinary; cider

Oct. 7-15


Merits: Tree: bears early; late blooming protects it from frost damage; bears fruits uniform in size & shape; fruits hang on trees for long time; fruits tolerate fall frosts and mild freezes. Fruit: natural gloss gives handsome appearance; does not bruise easily; highly aromatic.

Faults: Tree: requires long season.

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally large. Fruit: coarse flesh; subject to sweet water core; should be picked earlier for culinary use, but later for fresh eating.

Ratings: NY Bulletin 385 [suppl to AoNY]: g/vg; NY1914: g/+; BBG; Browning; Keil: listed among top varieties for stewing & jelly; Lowther: B; Phillips: "Spritely flavor much like Winesap. Versatile apple"; Y.

Stayman
(Stayman's Winesap)

(Winesap open pollinated)
Kansas
before 1875

aa sf st ta

medium to large


classic apple shape


rich, on the tart side of sweet-tart

red bloom or stripes over green, prominently dotted;

tough, moderately thick skinned


greenish cream

semi-firm, moderately fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Oct. 7-12



Merits: Tree: heavy cropper; naturally spreading; resistant to scab and cedar apple rust, very resistant to fireblight ; late blooming protects it from late frosts. Fruit: very aromatic; does not bruise easily; prized for larger size and sweeter flavor, but other good qualities of Winesap;  excellent keeper.

Faults: Tree: triploid (does not pollinate); requires long season; unreliably annual; highly susceptible to powdery mildew. Fruit: dull color; quickly browning flesh; subject to cracking.

Merit or fault?: Fruit: subject to sweet water core. [provides special burst of flavor, but can lead to decay at core]

Ratings: AA: *; AoNY: g/vg; NY1907: _ [Not adapted to New York conditions]; A21: vg; B-H: best; BBG; Browning; Bull99: 8-9X; Bull09: vg?; Burford; CG: 43/18/23/84; Can: best; FB113: &*; FB1001: D3,6,7,12,13,14; F&T: *$H (10 regions); Gould: one of the most important (for Pa.); Keil: listed among top 6 winter varieties for dessert & top for baking;  Ragan: vg-b; Waugh: vg; Wilkinson: vg; Y.

Newtown Pippin (Albemarle Pippin, Yellow Newtown)
(parentage unknown)
Queens, NY
before 1760


Newtown Pippin

medium to large


irregular


sprightly, on the tart side of sweet-tart , distinctive

greenish yellow, prominently dotted, often russeted; tough skin


cream to greenish white

very firm, moderately fine-grained, moderately dry

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Oct. 9-12

 


Merits: Tree: heavy cropper, if tends toward biennial; fruits hang on trees for long time; late blooming protects it from late frosts. Fruit: does not bruise easily; prized for its clear juice in cider making; excellent keeper.

Faults: Tree: slow to mature ; triploid (does not pollinate) ; weak grower; quality variable depending on soil; susceptible to scab, mildew. Fruit: not pretty, by today's standards; very quickly browning flesh.

Merit or Fault?: Tree: bears fruits of variable size and color; early bearer or slow to mature (reports very); partial tip bearer (pruning challenge) . Fruit: subject to sweet water core; optimum flavor develops after storage [some advise do not eat before January.

Ratings: AA: *; AoNY: best; NY1907: _ [** in Hudson Valley]; NY1914: b/*; A21: best; AFC: 11/2 IN- (high, fine flavor); AP: best; Baker: NJ (12); BBG; BC: vg; B-H: best; Browning; Bull91: 10*; Bull99:8-9*; Bull09: vgb*; Burford; CG: 47/21/22/95; Can: dessert first class, cooking first class, commercial value - first class; D: best; FB113: NE*&; FB208: R(DKM); FB1001: D14; F&T: $H (1 region); Hooper: 1; HSL: 2:  Lowther: vg for Green, B for Yellow; Lewelling; MI79: b, 10.8.3; Ont: 9/9/7/10; Phillips: "Packs a refreshing wallop for tart-apple fanciers, with full sugar and rich flavor developing in winter months"; Prince; Ragan: Green=b, Yellow=vg-b; Scott: 1; Waugh: best; Way; Wilkinson: vg/b/*; Y.

Winesap
(parentage unknown)
possibly VA or NJ
before 1800

aa cf ng op sf st

small to medium


classic apple shape


sprightly, tart, somewhat astringent, complex

two shades of deep red over yellow, prominently dotted; tough, moderately thin skinned


greenish yellow

firm, moderately fine-grained, very juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

Oct. 9-15



Merits: Tree: early bearer; naturally spreading; fruit hangs well; resistance to scab and cedar apple rust, very resistant to fireblight. Fruit: aromatic; does not bruise easily; prized for its tart, wine-like flavor (with some bitterness), especially in cider; excellent keeper.

Faults: Tree: triploid (does not pollinate); requires long season; extra thinning required to prevent overbearing. Fruit: quickly browning flesh; fruit subject to small cracking.

Merit or fault?: Tree: young trees are reliable & heavy cropper; but decline noticeable in reliability & fruit size as trees age; irregular, straggling growth. Fruit: subject to sweet water core.

Ratings: AA: **; AoNY: g/vg; NY1907: _ [Both tree qualities and fruit poor in New York]; AFC: 19/7 IN+,IN-, NC (rich, rather acid, one of the best for baking); AP: good; Baker: PA (20), VA, KY, OH; BBG; BC: nr; B-H: vg; Bull97: 7-8/**; Bull99: 7-8*; Bull09: vg*; Burford; CG: 43/20/25/88; Can: vg, commercial value - first class in certain districts, second class as grown in Canada; D: vg; FB113: NE*&; FB208: R(DKM); FB1001: D3,4,6,10,11,12,13,14; F&T: *$ (7 regions); Gould: magnificent; Hooper: 2 to 1; Keil: listed among top 6 winter varieties for dessert & top for stewing, pie, baking & jelly; Lear: 9; Lowther: vg; Lewelling; ME94: vg/*; MI79: vg, 6.6.4; NW: vg; Ont: 7/0/1/3; Phillips: "rich, vinous flavor is like an explosion in the mouth"; Prince [in list of cider apples also good for table]; Ragan: vg; Scott: 1; UIll: vg;Waugh: good/high quality; Wilkinson: vg; Y.

Tolman Sweet
(Tallman Sweeting, Talman)

(parentage unknown)
Mass., R.I.,  or NY
before 1820

ea sf st


medium


classic apple shape


rich, decidedly sweet

pale yellow, with distinct brown line from top to bottom; tough skinned


yellowish white

firm, moderately fine-grained, moderately juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider Fresh eating; culinary, especially baking; cider-blending

Merits: Tree: Hardy [nearly ironclad]; early bearer; reliable cropper;. Fruit: one of the few sweet apples prized for both fresh eating and baking .

Faults: Tree: slow to bear. Fruit: quickly browning flesh; varies in keeping quality.

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally small. Fruit: moderately dry flesh.

Ratings: AA: **; AoNY: g to vg; NY1907: * [** in northern NY]; NY1914: g-vg/**; NY1916: l/sp;  AFC: 20/4 ME,MA,NY,IN+,WI (rich, very sweet); AP: good: B-H: vg for a sweet apple; Baker: NY (6), MA (12), RI (20), CT (6), Cen. OH, MI; BC: good; Bull91: 6-7**; Bull09: vg**; Can: dessert good, cooking fair, commercial value - second class, except in special markets; D: scarcely second-rate (rich, sweet flavor); FB113: &: FB208: HR(KM); FB1001: D1,2,7;  F&T: ^H (0 regions); Hooper: 1: Keil: listed among top varieties for baking; Lowther: vg; ME94: vg/**-_; MI79: g, 4.7.6; MI90: vg, 6.8.6; NE9; Ont: 2/7/5/6; NW: vg; Prince [in list of inferior kinds]; Ragan: g; Waugh: fair; Wilkinson: vg.

Special: although mamy accounts claim Dorchester, Massacusetts, or Rhode Island as the place of origin (before 1800), New York State has two claims, as well. Jon Tallman places the origin to his ancestor Darius Tallman, who
developed it around 1820 in his orchard near the Erie Canal in Perinton, NY, near Rochester. C. S. Wilson, in his 1905 thesis about apples of New York State, writes that Thomas Tallman, who owned land near Geneva, NY, in about 1800 grew the Tallman Sweet after planting seeds found in an old Indian orchard that survived the destruction of General Sullivan during his raid through the Finger Lakes in the Revolutionary War. Our tree died in 2013.

LATER OCTOBER

Variety

Origin & Date

Image Sources

Fruit Uses

Merits & Faults

Ratings

Size,
Shape
& Flavor
Color & Texture
of Skin
& Flesh

Northern Spy
(thought to be Wagener open pollinated)
NY
before 1800


Northern Spy

large


classic apple shape, slightly ribbed


sprightly, on the tart side of sweet-tart, complex

multiple shades of red, including dark crimson, over a pale yellow, bloom; thin skinned


pale cream

semi-firm, fine-grained, juicy

Fresh eating; culinary, escpecially baking; cider

Oct. 12-16

Merits: Tree: very hardy (to z3); late blooming protects it from frost damage; reliable bearer; long lived ; late blooming protects it from late frosts . Fruit: highly aromatic; classic apple flavor; natural gloss gives handsome appearance; prized for multiple purposes, especially pies; excellent keeper, if not bruised.

Faults: Tree: very slow to mature; requires long season; susceptible to scab, bitter pit; quality variable due to soil. Fruit: subject to cracking; susceptable to bruise marks.

Merit or fault?: Tree: naturally very large; partial tip bearer (pruning challenge). Fruit: color can vary; bruises easily, but stores well if carefully packed.

Ratings: AA: *; AoNY: vg/b; NY1907: **; NY1914: vg-b/**; NY1916: 3; A21: vg/b; AFC: 14/2 NY,WNY, IN+,WI (highest quality); AP: vg; Baker: NY (20), RI (20), VA, MI90; BBG; BC: vg; B-H: vg-b; Bull97: 8-9**; Bull09: vgb**; Burford; CG: 46/22/22/90; Can: dessert best, cooking best, commercial value - home market first class, skin a little tender for distance shipment; D: vg-b; FB113: NE*&; FB208: HR(DKM); FB1001: D2,13; F&T: *^$H (4 regions); Hooper: 2; Keil: "in my opinionit is the best of all varieties," "the standard of quality for both dessert and culinary uses" & listed among top 6 winter varieties for dessert & top for stewing, pie, baking & jelly;  Lear: 10; Lowther: best; Lewelling; ME94: best/**; MI79: best, 9.9.10; MI90: best, 10.9.10; Ont: 8/10/10/10; Ragan: vg-b; Scott: 1; Unimpeachable; Waugh: vg; Way; Wilkinson: vg/b; Y.

Special: once the third leading apple variety grown in New York State.

Kinnaird's Choice
(Kinnard
)
(probably Winesap open pollinated)
Tennessee
before 1870

aa al nf ng sf

medium to large


somwhat flatter shape, sides sometimes unequal


rich, well balanced

mottled red and purple red over yellow, some russeting at top ; thick, tough skinned


white tinged with yellow

very firm, moderately coarse-grained, juicy.

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

not yet fruiting
Merits: Tree: very hardy for a "Southern" tree; early bearer; late blooming protects it from late frosts ; r resistant to scab; reliable bearer, even if somewhat biennial . Fruit: very aromatic; very good keeper.


Faults: Tree: triploid (does not pollinate);
requires long season.

Merit or fault?: Tree: irregular grower.  Fruit: subject to sweet water core.

Ratings:  B-H: vg; Bull91: 5-6--; Bull1897: 5-6--; Burford; FB113: &; FB1001: D3,4,10.

Special: according to Burford, it was popular during Great Depression for being a flavorful, late blooming variety
dependable as an annual cash crop.

Black Twig
(Mammoth Blacktwig,

Arkansaw [not Arkansas Black and probably not Paragon])
(probably Winesap x Limbertwig)
Arkansas or Tennessee
before 1830

aa al nf ng sf

large


classic apple shape


rich, on the tart side of sweet-tart

dark red over greenish yellow with some red striping and purply black, prominently dotted; thick, tough skinned


cream to pale yellow

firm, moderately fine-grained, moderately juicy

Fresh eating, culinary, cider

not yet fruiting
Merits: Tree: very hardy for a "Southern" tree; late blooming protects it from late frosts; reliable bearer; resistant to scab, fire blight, and cedar apple rust . Fruit: excellent keeper.


Faults: Tree: Irregular bearer, often shy;
requires long season; slow to bear; may drop fruit prematurely. Fruit: skin is slightly bitter.

Merit or fault?: Tree: mixed reports as very vigourous grower or naturally small . Fruit: should be picked when fruit is still hard; flavor best after fruit ripens over several weeks

Ratings:  AA: *; B-H: vg; Bull91: 9*; Bull09: vg*; Browning; Bull1897: 7-8/*; Burford; FB113: &; FB208: R(KM); FB1001: D12,13,14; F&T: (3 regions); Gould: excellent, but shy; Hedrick: good.

Virginia Beauty
(Zach's Red)
(parentage unknown)
Virginia
before 1820

cf sf

medium to large


classic apple shape


sprightly, on the sweet side of sweet-tart, complex

glossy red with distinctive russet "bonnet" at the top; tough skin


greenish-yellow

tender, fine-grained,  juicy

Fresh eating

not yet fruiting
Merits: Tree: bears early; naturally spreading; very productive; late blooming protects it from frost damage; bears fruits uniform in size & shape; wide branching limbs; resistant to fire blight and cedar apple rust. Fruit: aromatic, natural gloss gives handsome appearance; does not bruise easily; excellent keeper.

Faults: Tree: requires long season.

Ratings: Bull09: vg_ [ a regional favorite that did not receive national attention; it's not even in Ragan.]; F&T: H (0 regions); Gould: of merit, but largely unknown.

Special: who cares about the purported favorites of Tom Jefferson? -- this was the favorite apple of Doc Watson.


NOTES

Fruit Shape:
Finding the differences among terms such as obovate, oblong, oblong, ovate, and oblate confusing, I have opted to simplify descriptions of shapes. Most apples have a "classic apple shape," which is often written as roundish-ovate or  round-conical. Those apples are as tall as they are wide or slightly taller than it is wide, with some tapering toward the bottom.

Flavor:
The old term for sweet-tart was sub-acid, and a well-balanced sub-acid apple was much prized. As tastes and expectations have changed, more recently developed apples tend toward the sweeter side of the scale. Astringency can make an apple "inedible" or enhance its flavor with a special zest. It has been a prefered quality in hard cider. On the scale of how much flavor an apple has, the varieties range from mild to sprightly or rich to intense. The best flavored apples also have a complex quality that some might call spicy or somehow special. A few have a distinctive flavor and aroma that make them stand out, but not always for the best. Westfield Seek-No-Further, for example, is highly prized by some, but by others is nicknamed "Westfield Eat-No-Further." My wife can recognize a slight astringency in it, but I can't. What is wonderful about taste tests with a group of people is the wide range of preferences. Sweeter apples usually win, but many folks rate sweet apples low. Kidd's Orange and Jonagold received the most 10s in our 2014 apple taste test, but neither finished  on top. The leading complaint from those who didn't like them was that they were too sweet and didn't have enough apple flavor.

Tree Shape and Size:
The shape of the tree will vary. If upright, new limbs will shoot straight upward. They can be a challenge for pruning and shaping. Spreading trees are those with limbs that naturally grow at angles, and if the limbs grow below horizontal, they are deemed drooping. Roundish trees are those that have a mix of limb growth, but can also become bushy, so they can also be a challenge for pruning.

Blossom and Harvest Dates:
Harvest dates are based on averages at our orchard. In the case of trees that have not yet fruited, harvest order is estimated. Fortunately for us, we live about half an hour from the Cornell's Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva, which is a good reference point. Blossom dates are not listed except where very late blossoming varieties are noted in the merit section for helping avoid damage of late frosts. Most early harvested varieties are also early blossoming, and most varieties will blossom for 9 to 12 days so even earliest blossoming varieties will overlap with all but the latest blossoming varieties.

Sources for Apple Images:

Pictures are of apples from our orchard. Image sources are included when no picture is available:  aa=Adam's Apple blog; al=Apple Lover's Cookbook, by Amy Traverso.  cf=Century Farm Orchards; dw=Dave Wilson Nursery; ea=Eastman's Antique Apples; hc=Big Horse Creek Farm; me=Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA); nf=National Fruit Collection at Brogdale (UK) ng=National Germplasm Resources Laboratory's Germplasm Resources Information Network; ny=New York Apple Country; op=Orange Pippin Apple Varieties; sf=Slow Foods American Heirloom Apples; st=Seattle Tree Fruit Society.

KEY to the sources used for apple ratings:

New York Sources:
AoNY = S. A. Beach, Apples of New York, 1905, Volume I and Volume II; NY1907 = U.P. Hedrick, N.O. Booth, and O.M. Taylor. "Varieties of Apples for New York" in "Report of the Horticultural Department" in 25th Annual Report of the Board of Control of the New York Agricultural Experiment Station, 1907 [rating is for tthe Central Lakes district, except where note. **=Well Recommended; *=Recommended; +=Worthy of Trial; _=Undesirable for region. Quality ratings were also provided, but they repeated Beach.]; NY1914 = Another update, this one by F. H. Hall in "The Best Apples for New York State," found in the 32d Annual report of the Board of Control of the New York Agricultural Experiment Station, 1914 [varieties rated reduced to 98 of special value or merit in New York State, quality ratings changed slightly, so are included, and after the slash, recommendations for Central Lakes which had also been altered. NY1916: numerical ranking of leading commercial varieties for Western New York, with recommendation by S. A. Beach to commercial orchardists not to go outside the list except for local and special markets (l/sp).

Other sources:
A21 = W. Manhart, Apples for the Twenty First Century, 1995; AA = Adam's Apples, where apples are rated from no stars to three stars "based on their qualities eaten out of hand"; AFC = John Jacob Thomas. The American Fruit Culturist, 1875, with numbers representing number of states where the variety thrives/thrives well, with list of primary states following [WNY=Western New York; IN+=northern IN, IL, OH &IN-=southern IN, IL, OH] (comments);  AP = J. A. Warder, American pomology. Apples, 1867. Baker = Charles Baker, Practical and scientific fruit culture Lee and Shepard, 1866 [Rated * or ** for suitability {only Western NY included here} or _ for not rated; and listed among the best 6, 12, or 20 trees for particular states {or at least best 20 if no # listed}; Beecher = comments from Henry Ward Beecher in his Pleasant Talk about Fruits, Flowers and Farming; BBG=Brooklyn Botanical Gardens' The Best Apples To Buy And Grow, 2005; BC = Catalog of Fruit Trees Under Test at the Experimental Farm at Agassiz, British Columbia, 1900; B-H = J. L. Budd, assisted by Niels Ebbesen Hansen [who prepared the chapter on apples], American Horticultural Manual, Volume II: Systematic Pomology, 1903; Joseph Lancaster Budd; Browning = included in the chapter "Twenty or So Prize Apples" from Frank Browning's Apples, 1999; BUF = Rated "first-rate at the Pomological Convention at Buffalo, 1848'  Bull91 = "Catalog of Fruits Recommended for Cultivation; Division I: Fruits Mainly Adapted to Northern Localities; Section 1: Apples," U.S. Department of Agriculture, Division of Pomology. Bulletin, 1891 [Ratings are from 1 (very poor) to 10 (best); rating after / indicates notation for District No. 2 that includes New York's Finger Lakes (NR either not reported or not recommended; * known to succeed; ** highly successful; + promising]; Bull97 & Bull97: revisions were made in 1897 and 1899, but most were slight, so only when there were significant changes are they noted; Bull09 = when it was revised in 1909, the more traditional good, very good, and best ratings replaced the numerical system; Burford = Included in Tom Burford's Apples of North America, 192 Exceptional Varieties; Can = Linus Woolverton. The Canadian Apple Grower's Guide, 1910. Cole = S. W. Cole, The American Fruit Book, 1849; CG= R.J. Barnett. "Quality in Apples," Country Gentleman, November 10, 1917 [Ratings dessert quality-50/cooking quality-25/keeping quality-25/total-100; D = Andrew Jackson Downing and Samuel Downing. The Fruits and Fruit-trees of America [ratings added by Samuel Downing in the 1865 revised edition]; Eliott = F. R. Eliott, Elliott's Fruit Book, 1858; FB113 = US Department of Agriculture. Farmers' Bulletin No. 113: The Apple and How to Grow It, by G.B, Brackett. GPO: 1909 (NE=recommended for the district that includes New England, New York, and Pennsylvania; NE* recommended for commercial as well as family orchard; &=recommended for another part of the country); FB208 = US Department of Agriculture. Farmers' Bulletin No. 208: Varieties of Fruits Recommended for Planting, compiled by W.H. Ragan. GPO: 1904. [Ratings (HR, highly recommended, R, recommended, and T, recommended for trial; D=Dessert (desirable for eating in a fresh or uncooked state), K=Kitchen (has good cooking qualities), M=Market (is good bearer, has fine appearance, possesses firmness and keeping quality, C=cider) are for District 2: Nova Scotia, most of New England and NY, northern NJ, PA, OH, & IN, and the lower peninsula of Michigan; FB1001 = US Department of Agriculture. Farmers' Bulletin No. 1001 (1920): Varieties of Fruits Suggested for Planting in 14 different districts of the US(D1 through D14), including District 1 (colder portions of New England and New York), District 2 (including the Finger Lakes), and District 3 (including Shenandoah Valley and Appalachian Mountains); F&T= John Clifford Folger & Samuel Mable Thomson. The commercial apple industry of North America, 1921. [* among top 12 commercial country wide (80% of all apples); ^ declining in commercial importance; $ most marketable, fetching best prices; H good for home use as well] Gould = H.P. Gould. "Some Comment on Important Apple Varieties," in Annual Report of the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, 1910; Hedrick = U. P. Hedrick. Cyclopedia of Hardy Fruit. Macmillan, 1922; Hooper = E. J. Hooper. Hooper's Western Fruit Book: (1857); HSL = A Catalogue of the Fruits Cultivated in the Garden of the Horticultural Society of London, 1831; Keil= J.B. Keil. "Apples from a Consumer's Standpoint." Ohio State Horticultural Society Annual Report ,1917 (Dessert apples were his own personal preference. Cooking apples were selected from cooking tests done at the station​);  Lear = flavor rating from 1-10 by O.H. Lear, Missouri orchardist, as recorded in James Fitz, Southern Apple and Peach Culturist, 1872; Lewelling = included among the fruit trees brought from Iowa to Oregon by covered wagon in 1847 by Henderson Lewelling to establish the first commercial orchard in the Pacific Northwest; Lowther = Encyclopedia of practical horticulture, by Granville Lowther and William Worthington, 1914 [noting that good was the lowest rating and best was more generously bestowed than elsewhere]; ME94 = "Catalog of Maine Fruits: Apples," Annual Report of the Maine Experimental Station, 1894; ME08 = W. M. Munson, "Preliminary Notes on the Seedling Apples of Maine," Annual Report of the Maine Experimental Station, 1908 [rating after / indicates notation for southern Maine, except where noted: * recommended; ** highly recommended, _ not recommended; MI79 = "Fruit Catalogue of 1879," in Ninth Annual Report of the Secretary of the State Pomological Society of Michigan, 1879;  MI90 = Fruit List, from Fruit List and Apple Scab, by L.R. Taft, Michigan State Board of Agriculture, 1890 [quality, followed by numerical ranking for dessert, cooking, market]; NE1-NE24 = among top two dozen varieties best-suited to the meridian of New England, ranked according to merit b Samual Walker, president of the Massachusetts Horticultural Society, in Hovey's Magazine, vol 25, 1849; NW=N.E. Hanson, A Study of Northwest Apples, South Dakota Agricultural College, 1902. Ont = Catalogue of Fruits--Apples; for Use of Judges at Exhibitions, in Ontario Legislative Assembly, Sessionaly Papers, Volume 24, 1892 [the four ratings are for Quality:Dessert/Quality:Cooking/Home Market Value:/Foreign Market Value]; Phillips = The Holistic Orchard: Tree Fruits and Berries the Biological Way (2012) by Michael Phillips; Potter = included among five favorite apples named by British pomologist J.M.S. Potter (director of Brogdale Experimental Horticulture Station and in charge of the National Fruit Collections from 1936 to 1972); Prince = iincluded in Prince's Annual Catalogue of Fruit and Ornamental Trees, 1841; Ragan = Nomenclature of the Apple: a catalogue of the known varieties referred to in American publications from 1804 to 1904, compiled by W. H. Ragan, 1905; Scott = Scott's Orchardist: Or Catalogue of Fruits Cultivated at Merriott, Somerset, 1873 [most every tree received a 1 rating, but Scott was in the business of selling trees. Included in part to show what American varieties he had imported to England]; UIll = University of Illinois Agricultural Experiment Station, Varieties of Apples (Bulletin #45), 1896; Waugh = Frank Albert Waugh. The American apple orchard: a sketch of the practice of apple in North America at the beginning of the twentieth century, 1908; Way = on Roger Way' Top 20 list from 1966 [Way was Cornell's leading apple expert in the mid-20th Century; Wilkinson = A. E. Wilkinson, The Apple: A Practical Treatise, 1915 (* indicates that the variety was included among the list of the 36 best for the farm or commercial orchard for New England or New York); Unimpeachable = Listed as "unimpeachable" for Western New York by P. Barry in The Fruit Garden, 1857; Y = selection in Roger Yepsen's book Apples, 1994.


This page written and maintained by John R. Henderson ( orchard @ sagehenfarmlodi.com ).
Last modified: October 15, 2014
URL: http://www.sagehenfarmlodi.com/ourapples.html
Background image of cidering by Laura Low.