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Apple Variety Descriptions
Apple Variety Descriptions
Apple Variety Descriptions (E-L)
Apple Variety Descriptions (S-Y)
|Magnum Bonum (Bonum, Maggie Bonum, Red Bonum) - A long-time Southern favorite and one
of the finest early fall apples available. It originated in 1828 in Davidson County, North
Carolina when John Kinny planted seeds of the Hall apple,
another old time Southern favorite. It was once a very
popular commercial variety in Virginia grown for its fine flavor and the hardy and
productive nature of the tree. Fruit size is medium or smaller. The yellow skin is mostly
covered in light red and darker red streaks with numerous white dots over the surface. The
fine-grained, aromatic white flesh is often stained with red near the outer skin. Ripens
September to October and keeps fairly well if properly stored.
Blush (Lady Blush, Red Cheek) - Originated in
Burlington, New Jersey in 1817 and first named by Samuel Allinson. It is a very lovely
apple with a sharp, tangy flavor well suited for cooking. When the fruit is fully ripe,
the sharp flavor mellows a bit and makes a very tasty fresh eating apple. It also makes an
excellent drying apple as the flesh remains very white when fully dried. Fruit medium to
large with smooth, pale waxen yellow skin with a crimson blush. The fine white flesh is
crisp, tender, very juicy, and very tart. Ripens July to September depending on location.
|Mann (Diltz, Deiltz) - Originated as a chance seedling in 1850 in the orchard
of Judge Mooney of Oswego County, New York. It was introduced into Niagara County, New
York by a Dr. Mann and later named for him by the Western New York State Horticultural
Society. Fruit medium to large with greenish to deep yellow skin and sometimes lightly
covered with patches of russet. Flesh is yellow, firm, and juicy. Ripens late fall and
keeps into the early spring.
|Margaret (Early Margaret, Early Striped Juneating, Striped June) - A very old
variety originating in England and sold in the South for many years as Striped June or
Early Striped June. Margaret is characterized by its small to medium size with an
oblong to slightly conical shape. The skin is yellow with dark red striping concentrated
most at the stem end. The crisp, white flesh is tender, juicy, and quite flavorful for an
early season apple. Ripens June to July.
- Mattamuskeet probably originated near Lake Mattamuskeet in Hyde
County, North Carolina. Legend has it that the seed was taken from the gizzard of a wild
goose by the Mattamuskeet Indians. The fruit hangs well on the tree and ripens in
November. Fruit is medium-sized and slightly conical or irregular in shape. Skin is
greenish-yellow and covered with dull purplish or rusty overtones. Flesh is dull yellow,
firm, juicy, and acid when picked, but mellows in storage.
Bloom Picture Fruit Picture
(Yellow May, White Juneating, May Pippin) - One of
the earliest season apples and perhaps one of the oldest. Many early sources describe this
apple as White Juneating which is believed to have originated in Europe during the Middle
Ages. It was long valued in the South for its early ripening characteristics, but was
eventually surpassed in popularity with the introduction of Yellow Transparent, an even
earlier variety. Fruit is medium to large with pale yellow skin frequently with a slight reddish
blush. The tender white flesh is juicy and quite tart. Ripens late May to June.
Bloom Picture Fruit Picture
(McIntosh Red) - The most important commercial variety grown in the
north for years, McIntosh is also a fine apple long grown and admired in many regions of
the south. It was discovered in 1811 as a young seedling tree in Dundas County, Ontario,
Canada by John McIntosh, an American who had recently emigrated to the area from New York
state. By 1835, he was selling grafted trees which quickly became local favorites,
producing apples sought after for their great flavor, dependability, and keeping
qualities. The original tree at the McIntosh homestead finally blew down and died in 1910.
Fruit is medium-sized, roundish to slightly flattened with smooth, thin, whitish-yellow
skin mostly covered with a deep red blush. The firm, crisp, white flesh is juicy, very
aromatic and sometimes stained with red streaks. Ripens September to December and is a
Bloom Picture Fruit
d'Or- A classic English cider apple which
actually originated in Boisguillaume, France in the 1800's. It was introduced into England
in 1884 by the Woolhope Naturalists Field Club where it was embraced for its
outstanding cider qualities. It is a bittersweet fruit which produces a sweet, astringent
juice high in tannins and converts into a cider with high alcohol content and a strong,
fruity flavor. Fruit is orange and yellow in color with a russet coating. Ripens in
Bloom Picture Fruit
(Melba Red, Melba, Platts)
A red sport of Melba which
originated with the Canadian Department of Agriculture in 1936. A colorful
red apple with very flavorful juicy, sweet flesh. Fruit is small to medium
in size with a roundish conic shape. The skin is yellow overlaid with
a pinkish blush and dark red shading. A fine apple with a few drawbacks. It
is highly susceptible to apple scab and the fruit tends to drop prematurely.
A very early bloomer ripening in late August.
|Melrose - A cross of Jonathan and Red Delicious released in 1944
by Freeman S. Howlett of the Ohio Agricultural Experiment Station in Wooster. Described as
brisk and refreshing with plenty of sweetness, Melrose is a fine commercial variety raised
in the United States and France. Fruit is medium to large, irregular in shape and
sometimes ribbed. Skin is greenish-yellow with a dull copper-red blush and occasional
russeting. The creamy, green-tinged flesh is firm and crisp with an excellent flavor and
quality. Ripens in late October and is a very good keeper.
|Michelin - This is an old and long popular English cider apple
which originated with M. Legrand of Yvetot, Normandy around 1872. It was named after M..
Michelin, a well-known aficionado of cider apples. The apple was introduced into England
in 1884 by the Woolhope Naturalists Field Club. Fruit is small and pale green in
color. It produces a sweet juice resulting in a clean, bittersweet cider ideal for
blending with other ciders. Ripens late October to November.
(Blair, Harrigan, Thomas) - Milam was first
introduced into Illinois in 1902 as Red Winter Pearmain, but is thought to have originally
come from Virginia or Kentucky. It is small to medium with smooth, greenish-yellow skin
overlaid with light red, but becoming much darker red when exposed to the sun.
Greenish-white flesh is tender, crisp, juicy and somewhat coarse in texture. Ripens
September to October and keeps until January or later.
Logan's Northern Pippin, Mumper Vandevere) - As described in Beach's
Apples of New York (1905), Minkler was recognized as a popular apple in
Illinois around 1865 where its cultivation was confined to this region and
adjoining states. The history of the apple is very confusing but it is known
it was first exhibited before the Illinois Horticultural Society around this
period by Mr. S.G. Minkler. The apple is medium-sized and uniform in shape.
The thin, slightly tough skin is smooth, glossy, greenish-yellow changing to
pale yellow and overspread with a pinkish-red blush and splashes of dark
carmine. The yellow to greenish flesh is very firm and coarse, slightly
aromatic and very crisp and juicy. Ripens late October to early November.
Pippin (Missouri Keeper,
Missouri Orange, Stones Eureka) - In 1839, Brinkley Hornsby first settled in Johnson
County, Missouri, bringing with him apple seeds which he planted immediately on his new
homestead. One of these seeds produced a seedling tree which first fruited in 1854.
Referred to as his "dollars and cents" apple by Mr. Hornsby, it was later named
Missouri Pippin and by 1869 was propagated and sold in St. Louis as Missouri Keeper. Noted
for its very early bearing ability, it was a popular variety with commercial growers who
used it as a "filler" tree in orchards before being removed to provide room for
the primary varieties. Fruit is medium to large, roundish to conical and flattened on the
ends. The thick, smooth skin is greenish-yellow mostly covered with dark and light red
stripes and shading. The yellowish-white flesh is firm, coarse and breaking. Ripens
November to December and is a good keeper.
- In the early 1900's, a small nursery known as Brushy
Mountain Nursery, located in the North Carolina foothills of the Blue Ridge
mountains, sold an apple tree with the unusual name of Mongolian. It was a
large to very large flat apple with very waxy skin and was described as the
"reddest red you have ever seen". In 2000, renown apple hunter, Tom Brown,
learned that there might be several old Mongolian trees at the old Fortner
home place near the Wilkes/Alexander county line in North Carolina. After
initial investigations, Tom discovered that these old trees had recently
been bulldozed in a land-clearing operation. Two years later, Tom was
introduced to a lady who had numerous old apple trees on her property
including one she called the "Clothes Line" apple. The Clothes Line "tree"
consisted of a single limb which had been grafted onto an older tree and
which extended out over her clothes line. Upon seeing a handful of the
apples, Tom suspected this could be the rare Mongolian. After showing the
fruit to several Fortner family members, Tom was able to confirm the
identity of this lost apple. Fruit
(Gardeners Apple, American Mother, Queen Anne) - Mother
originated in the nineteenth century on the farm of Gen. Stephen P. Gardner of Bolton,
Massachusetts. It is well adapted to the South and was very well known in central North
Carolina. Medium size fruit is slightly oblong with thin, smooth, golden yellow skin
mostly covered with red splashes and striping. Flesh is yellow, fine-grained, tender and
juicy with a pleasant aroma. Ripens August to September in warmer areas, September to
November in mountains.
Boomer (Mount Boomer, Seek No Further) - First
described in 1900 by the Virginia State Horticultural Society. Not widely distributed, the
apple was most popular in Tennessee and Kentucky in the early part of the twentieth
century. Fruit is large to very large with pale greenish-yellow skin with an occasional
red blush. Although not considered a first-rate dessert apple, it is an excellent cooking
and baking apple. Mild flavored with firm, juicy flesh. Ripens in September in the
Rose - Not to be mistaken for the patented, red-fleshed Mountain Rose apple grown in the Mt. Hood River Valley of Oregon. Our Mountain Rose was discovered in 1985 as a wild
seedling tree here in Ashe County. The Ashe County Mountain Rose is an exceptionally attractive early fall
apple with a pleasant, tangy flavor. The tree is vigorous, strongly branched and very
prolific. Fruit is small to medium with beautiful, smooth lemon-yellow skin with a faint
rose blush on the sunny side. The yellowish white flesh is tender, crisp and juicy. Ripens
Moyers Spice -
A hardy and vigorous variety from the collection of the late Henry Morton of
Gatlinburg, Tennessee. This medium-sized, aromatic red apple has yellowish-white flesh
with a spicy subacid to sweet flavor. Ripens in mid-July and is not a good keeper.
Picture Bloom Picture
(Bryan) - This apple arose in the mid-1800's from seeds
planted by Robert Boatman of Walker County, Georgia. It was named for Mrs. J. W. Bryan of
Lookout Mountain, Georgia, who was a noted member of the Georgia Horticultural Society.
The tree is a very productive and dependable bearer and produces a large, showy, colorful
apple. Long extinct in this country, Lee Calhoun of Pittsboro, North Carolina, obtained
scionwood in the early 1990's from the fruit collection of the National Fruit Trust of
Kent, England. Fruit is large, roundish to conical, with greenish-yellow skin with an
reddish-orange blush and occasional light red stripes. The creamy white flesh is tender,
coarse and somewhat dry. Ripens July to August, but can be picked into October in
mountainous areas. Fruit
Sweet, Ray Apple, Northern Sweet) - Munsons Sweet is a prolific apple originating in
Massachusetts before 1849 and was once widely available through several Southern
nurseries, but is considered a rare variety today. It is an attractive, medium-sized apple
having a smooth, but thick, tough golden-yellow skin with an occasional red blush. The
yellow-tinged flesh is moderately fine-grained, tender, juicy and very sweet. Ripens late
September to November.
As described in Lee Calhoun's book, Old Southern
Apples, T. Blaine Poole of Fries, Virginia, contacted Lee in 1986
telling him of a Muskmelon Sweet apple tree. Mr. Poole described this as his
favorite apple when he was a boy with the only tree belonging to nearby
neighbors. After the harvest, the neighbors stored boxes of the apples in an
unused room in their house. Mr. Poole would detour by the house on his way
to school and, using a long sharpened stick, would spear apples through a
broken pane in the window. As far as he knew, the neighbors never figured
out where the apples disappeared!
Pippin (Albemarle Pippin, Green Winter Pippin,
New York Pippin, Virginia Pippin) - A venerable old variety originating in New York in the early 1800's.
There are two recognized Newtown Pippins - Green Newtown Pippin and Yellow Newtown Pippin.
One is the originator of the other, but as to which came first is unknown. Yellow Newtown
Pippin is the most well known and a long-time southern favorite. It is a
medium to large apple,
greenish-yellow in color with hints of pink at the stem end. The yellowish flesh is firm, crisp,
and very aromatic. A good storage apple ripening in October and keeping into February or
(Summerour, Winter Horse, Jackson Red,
Missouri Red, Aberdeen, Howard, Mobbs, World's Wonder) - Believed to have originated
in the 1800's with the Cherokee Indians on Nickajack Creek, Macon County, North Carolina.
Although not noted for its fresh eating qualities, Nickajack was favored for its large
size, dependability and long keeping ability. Fruit medium to large with greenish-yellow
skin shaded with dark red. Slightly yellowish flesh is firm and juicy with a brisk subacid
flavor. Ripens late November in mountains, September in warmer areas.
Bloom Picture Fruit Picture
Beefing (Norfolk Beaufin, Catshead Beaufin) -
Norfolk Beefing is an old English apple variety used primarily for cooking and drying. It
was first described in this country in the 1840's but was not listed in any southern
nursery catalogs. A medium to large apple that hangs on the tree into January or later. It
is greenish-yellow in color with a dull red coating and faintly striped. The
greenish-white flesh is crisp and juicy and sweetens in storage. Considered a good keeper.
Carolina Keeper (Carolina
Keeper) - North Carolina Keeper is believed to come out of Davidson County, North Carolina,
in the late 1800's. There is some confusion as to its heritage with some early sources
saying it is a seedling of Gilpin, a very similar variety. Calhoun says North Carolina
Keeper closely resembles Bullet and may be identical to that old North Carolina variety.
Fruit size is medium or smaller, conical, with yellow skin mostly covered with red and
darker red striping. Flesh is yellow, crisp and juicy. Ripens late winter and is an
excellent winter keeper.
(Northern Spice, Spy) - A superb apple of Northern heritage which
attains its greatest potential as a mountain grown apple. When grown in warmer areas it
lacks the crispness and flavor of fruit grown in cooler regions. The apple originated
about 1800 in East Bloomfield, New York and soon became popular throughout the United
States. Fruit is a good keeper and an excellent cooker. Also great as a fresh picked fruit
with a spicy, aromatic flavor. Large, roundish fruit with smooth, thin, dark red skin. The
clean, white flesh is fine-grained, tender, crisp and juicy. An excellent keeper which
ripens in October.
Pea No. 1 (Knotty
Pea, Notly Pippin No. 1) - A very large fall apple which originated in North Carolina
according to an 1863 nursery catalog from Pennsylvania. It was described in an
Carolina catalog as, "one of the best large apples." It is a fine processing
apple as it holds its shape well when canned. It has a very pleasant flavor and ripens
October to November.
|Oliver (Senator, Olivers Red) - In the
early 1800's, John Oliver of Washington County, Arkansas raised an apple tree on his farm
that produced a striking red apple with large, distinctive dots, or lenticels, over the
skins surface. It became a very popular local variety and was widely grown in the
Ozarks of Arkansas. In 1895, Stark Bros Nursery sold this apple under the
trademarked name, Senator. Valued for its size and high quality, it was especially noted
for its long keeping abilities. Fruit size is medium to large with thick, smooth, glossy
yellow skin overlaid with rich-red and streaks of darker red. The surface is punctuated
with large, conspicuous, light colored dots. The yellowish flesh is fine-grained and juicy
and often stained with red. Ripens October to November and is an excellent keeper.
This fine old North Carolina apple originated in the Ophir (pronounced OH-fur) community near the Uwharrie Mountains in the north-central Piedmont region of the state. According to Calhoun (2011), this information was provided to him in 1987 by Mrs. Nellie Williams of Kittrell, NC, whose husband was a former minister in Ophir. The original tree was planted by the parents of Mrs. Robert Saunders of Ophir who collected a root sprout at an abandoned sawmill 75 years earlier. Fruit medium-sized, roundish, sometimes lobed; skin mostly covered in red. Flesh is crisp and very juicy with a pleasant subacid flavor. Ripens late August to early September.
(Ortley Pippin, White Bellflower, Woolmans Long
Pippin) - More commonly known in the South as White Bellflower, Ortley originated in the
1800's in New Jersey where it was first described as Woolmans Long Pippin. The fruit
resembles the better known Yellow Bellflower, but is less acid in flavor. Fruit is medium
to large, conical, with greasy yellow skin occasionally having a fine red blush. The
creamy white flesh is tender and juicy. Ripens October to January.
- This apple is a cross of A1291 and Golden Delicious and
was developed at the Missouri State Agricultural Experimental Station and introduced in
1970. It is similar in flavor and appearance to Golden Delicious but ripens about three
weeks earlier. It bears young and shows some disease resistance but is a biennial bearer.
It is a large to very large apple with bright yellow waxy skin.
Pippin (Gilmer Pippin) - This
apple originated about 1850 on the farm of Monroe Parks of North Georgia and has been a
very popular variety in that state for years. It is most valued for its cooking qualities,
being too tart for fresh eating unless fully ripe. It makes outstanding apple butter,
jelly and cider. The fruit is large, with greenish-yellow skin often having a red blush.
Ripens late fall and is a very good keeper.
(Parmar, Yellow Flat) - An apple of Virginia
origin arising sometime in the 18th century, but never very well known or
widely distributed. It is quite an attractive yellow apple popular for making a thick,
dark yellow applesauce. It was also very popular for making apple brandy. It was said that
if a grower had several Parmer trees in his yard, the neighbors knew he was most certainly
making illegal brandy! Fruit is small to medium, conical-shaped, with deep yellow skin and
irregular patches of russet all over. The dark yellow flesh is fine-grained, crisp, and subacid in flavor. Ripens July to August.
Pleasant (Peck, Dutch Greening,
Watts Apple) - This is a very fine dessert apple originating in Rhode Island in the early
1800's. Fruit is medium to large with a variable shape, often with a distinctive furrow on
one side. Skin is mostly green when first picked, but becomes a lovely clear yellow with a
blush after ripening in storage. The aromatic yellow flesh is firm, tender, and juicy.
Ripens September to October.
- In the mid-1800's, George P. Peffer of
Pewaukee, Wisconsin, crossed Duchess of Oldenburg with Northern Spy to produce Pewaukee.
It is a fine dessert and cooking apple and is most noted for its winter hardiness, a trait
inherited from its parent, Duchess of Oldenburg. Though considered only fair for fresh
eating quality, it is a vigorous, productive tree and grows quite well with minimal care.
Fruit size is medium to large with smooth, thin, greenish-yellow skin mottled with
orange-red and striped with carmine. The whitish flesh is firm, coarse, and very juicy.
Ripens in November and is a good keeper.
|Pilot (Virginia Pilot) - Pilot is a wonderful old Virginia apple which
originated about 1830 on the farm of John Lobban at the base of Pilot Mountain in Nelson
Co., Virginia. Thought to be extinct, it was discovered by our friend, Tom Burford, in
1989 in Monroe, Virginia. It is best suited for growing in the mountains and foothills,
performing poorly when grown below 1000 feet in elevation. Fruit is large, roundish to
oblate with pale yellow skin heavily striped and shaded with dull red. The yellow flesh is
fine-grained, firm, tender and juicy with a slightly aromatic fragrance. Ripens in October
and is an excellent keeper.
- A beautiful apple with startling bright pink flesh and
very attractive crimson-pink blossoms. Introduced in 1944 by the renowned California plant
breeder, Albert Etter, Pink Pearl is a wonderful table apple which makes a beautiful and
tasty pink applesauce. Fruit is medium-sized with a distinctive conical shape. The skin is
creamy pale green with bright pink flesh. Flesh is crisp, fine-grained and aromatic with a
delicious sweet-tart flavor. Ripens in August.
Pineapple (Pitmaston Pine) - A
small but wonderful old russet apple which arose in England around 1785. Long appreciated
as a very fine dessert apple. It is somewhat conical-shaped with a rich yellow color
overlaid with a fine tawny russet. The creamy-yellow flesh is tender and juicy with a
rich, sugary flavor. Ripens in mid-September.
|Polly Eades - Discovered in 1884 in Robards, Kentucky and widely sold throughout the
region. Believed to be an offspring of the more well-known Horse apple, Polly Eades is a
late bloomer, thus escaping most late spring frosts. Tree bears early and produces a fruit
which can be used for cooking or fresh eating. Fruit is medium to large, slightly conical
with deep yellow skin with a red blush on the sunny side. Yellowish flesh is juicy,
tender, aromatic, and rather tart. Ripens July to August.
|Pomme Gris (Gray Apple, Pomme Grise, Grise) - Pomme Grise may have originated with
the French people of the St. Lawrence valley in Canada, but it is also possible it came
into Canada from Europe. Although not a particularly attractive fruit, it is an excellent
dessert apple. Fruit size is medium to small with thick, tough greenish-yellow skin almost
entirely covered with a brownish russet. The rich, juicy yellow flesh is firm, crisp, and
aromatic. Ripens in September and is a fairly good keeper.
(Jennings, Yellow Summer Pearmain) - One of many apples of
northern origin that gained popularity in the South for its many fine cooking and eating
qualities. It originated around 1800 in Sherburne, Massachusetts and was named for Rev.
Samuel Porter who first grew the apple. It gained immense publicity when it was
recommended in the famous Fanny Farmer Boston Cookbook as a superb cooking apple.
When cooked, it retains its flavor and shape quite well. Fruit is small to large, roundish
to slightly oblong or conical. The thin, smooth skin is greenish-yellow with a
reddish-orange blush on the sunny side, sometimes with crimson red spots. Flesh is yellow,
fine-grained, juicy and aromatic. Ripens August to September.
quality bittersharp cider apple which originated in the orchard of Charles
Porter of East Lambrook, Somerset, sometime during the 19th century.
Introduced in 1907 and was soon widely propagated throughout Somerset. It
produces a sharp juice with little astringency. Ripens late October to early
American, Red Cathead, Bartlett) - Priestly originated in Bucks County, Pennsylvania and
was first described in 1817. A fine fresh eating apple noted for its keeping ability,
staying fresh and quite juicy until late spring. The tree is vigorous, productive and a
dependable annual bearer. Fruit is medium to large, covered with red and darker red
stripes. The yellowish-white flesh is firm, coarse and very juicy. Ripens November to
|Primate (July Apple, Harvest Apple, Belle Rose) - Primate is a high-quality apple
which originated about 1840 on the farm of Calvin D. Bingham of Camillus, New York. It is
an ideal apple for the home orchard as it ripens over a period of several weeks, extending
the harvest for the home grower. The fruit is medium-sized and frequently ribbed. The
thin, yellow skin is often blushed with red on the sunny side. The tender white flesh is
aromatic, crisp, and juicy. Ripens July to September.
This apple is a cross of Starking and Purdue 610-2 bred and developed through a
cooperative program of Purdue, Rutgers and Illinois Universities. It was developed to be
highly disease resistant, especially to apple scab, but is also moderately resistant to
fireblight and mildew. It was introduced in 1972 and was named for the wife of F. D.
Hovde, president of Purdue University. Fruit is medium sized and roundish-conical in
shape, similar to Jonathan. Skin is smooth with a deep red blush. The cream-colored flesh
is tender, juicy, and sweet. Ripens November.
Sweet (Pound Sweet,
Pound Sweeting, Pumpkin Sweeting, Rhode Island Sweet,
Round Sweet, Vermont Sweet, Lymans
Pumpkin Sweet, Sweet Pumpkin, Yankee Apple) - The name for this apple is derived from its large size and
yellowish-orange color. It originated in
1800's in the orchards of S. Lyman of
Manchester, Connecticut and was first recorded in 1834. It has long been a popular apple in the South sought out for its
culinary qualities. It is excellent for baking or canning, but less desirable for fresh
eating. Fruit is large to very large with tough, smooth
skin with patches of russet, occasionally
showing a brownish-red blush. The yellow flesh is firm, crisp, juicy, and very sweet.
Ripens October or later.
An old Stark Bros. apple which originated in
Missouri around 1900. A large fruit with yellow skin colorfully striped with
red. The yellow flesh is juicy and fine-grained. Ripens in August to
Bloom Picture Fruit Picture
(Neverfail, Jefferson Pippin, Royal Janette) - An apple
with a long, convoluted history, Ralls Janet first gained attention in 1800 where it was
grown on the farm of Caleb Ralls in Amherst County, Virginia. Fruit is medium to large
with thin greenish-yellow skin covered with pinkish red and overlaid with dark red
striping. The yellowish flesh is fine-grained, crisp and juicy. Ripens in October and is
an excellent keeper.
Sweet (Ramsdales Red Pumpkin Sweet,
English Sweet, Hurlbut) - Ramsdell Sweet originated in Connecticut, and, although a fine,
attractive fresh eating apple, was not widely sold by southern nurseries. It was
introduced by Rev. H. S. Ramsdell of Thompson, Connecticut in 1838 and officially
catalogued by the American Pomological Society in 1862. Fruit is medium to large, conic to
rectangular in shape with yellow skin nearly covered with dark red and darker red
striping. The yellowish-white flesh is firm, tender and very sweet, but can become mealy
if overripe. Ripens in September.
|Rattle Core (Rattler) - This is an old mountain apple with the unusual
trait of having loose seeds in a hollow central core that makes a distinct rattling sound
when the fruit is shaken. Known as Rattle Core in North Carolina, it is also known as
Rattler in parts of West Virginia. Some older literature describe two other apples, Hollow
Core Pippin and Rattle-Box, both of which may be the same apple as Rattle Core. Fruit
is medium or smaller with greenish-yellow skin thinly striped with red. The white flesh is
tender and juicy. Ripens September to October.
fine flavored apple discovered as a limb
mutation of Golden Delicious in the Browning
Orchard near Wallingford, KY, by the late W.
Armstrong, former Extension Specialist with the
University of Kentucky. Introduced in 1970. Fruit is large, symmetrical
round to somewhat conical
and uniformly golden-brown. Flavor is
rich and robust with a little more spiciness than Golden
Delicious. Very productive. Ripens late September.
is a wonderful essay in the November 2002 edition of Smithsonian
describing Tim Hensley's
quest for Reasor Green, an old-timey apple once raised and sold by his
great-great-grandfather, C.C. Davis, at his nursery in
Lee County, Virginia in 1886. The tree was thought to be lost,
but as fortune would have it, Tim was able to obtain cuttings from a
surviving tree through the help of Mr. "Hop" Slemp of Dryden, Virginia.
The full story is online at
Tim, of Bristol, Virginia, was kind enough to share cuttings with us several
years ago, so we are fortunate to now have this wonderful old apple in our
collection. Fruit is medium to large in size, roundish ovate with green skin
that has a distinctive faint scarlet blush. The crisp, firm flesh is subacid
with a very fine flavor. It has the peculiar habit of drying when
slightly wounded instead of rotting. Ripens late fall and is an excellent
Ashmore, Abe Lincoln, Captain) - Second only to Winesap as the most widely sold Southern
apple and one of the most widely distributed throughout the world. A very popular
American apple first originating in Russia and brought to this country in 1870. Fruit
medium sized and distinctly lobed in appearance. The thin, pale yellow skin in nearly
covered with bright red and crimson splashes and stripes. White flesh is often tinged with
red streaks and is coarse, crisp, moderately juicy and briskly subacid in flavor. Ripens
early in June to July.
Bloom Picture Fruit Picture
(Cherokee, Norga) - This apple of northern
Georgia is often confused with the more well known variety, Detroit Red. The
exact date of origin is unclear but it was examined by USDA experts in 1924
and was determined to be different from the northern Detroit Red. It
was grown for more than a century in the area around Blue Ridge in
northern Georgia and was a commercial variety in northern Alabama and
southeast Tennessee. A late bloomer which ripens in July-August and makes an
excellent drying apple.
Red Rebel -
This beautiful apple originated about 1850 in
Rappahannock, Virginia on the farm of Captain Charles B. Wood. It was once
described in old nursery catalogs as "the prettiest apple that grows."
Despite its attractiveness and fine flavor, the apple never gained a
following in the South and was thought to be lost until our good friend,
Joyce Neighbors of Gadsden, Alabama, found an old tree growing in nearby
Wedowee which had been planted in the 1930's. Thanks to her efforts, this
wonderful old apple is once again available. The apple is medium to large
with deep dark red skin over a light yellow background. The yellowish flesh
is crisp with a fine subacid flavor. Ripens late fall in most areas.
(Reese) - This is an old Alabama apple which originated in
Randolph County and produced its first fruit in 1911. Our friend, Joyce Neighbors of
Alabama, found this apple in the orchard of Doyle Baker of Berry, Alabama, which had been
planted in 1988. Fruit is medium-sized, roundish conical, irregular, with greenish-yellow
skin splashed with red. Ripens in September.
Morgan - A local family heirloom
of the Deep South, originating in Houston, Texas, an area not conducive to
growing a wide variety of apples. The apple was first raised by Reverend
Herman T. Morgan in 1965 from seeds of Granny Smith and produced its first
fruit in 1972. It is well adapted to most regions and has been raised in
agricultural zones 7 through 9 as well as areas
further north. Fruit is medium
to large, roundish-conical with rich pinkish-red skin. A fine quality apple that ripens in
Island Greening (Burlington,
Ganges, Green Winter Pippin, Yellow Sweeting?) - This historic old American apple originated about 1650 at
Greens End, Newport, Rhode Island. At the end of the 19th century, it was
one of New Yorks most important commercial varieties, surpassed only by Baldwin. It
is a vigorous and long-lived tree but does well in the South only at higher altitudes. It
is an excellent winter keeper and one of the best cooking apples available. It is a very
fine substitute for the more commonly known Granny Smith. The fruit is large, uniformly
round in shape and flattened on the ends. The dark, waxy green skin turns a
greenish-yellow when fully ripe. The fine-grained yellow flesh is tender, crisp, juicy and
quite tart in flavor. Ripens September to October and keeps until February or longer.
Bloom Picture Fruit Picture
Pippin (Ribston, Reinette
Grenade Anglaise, Travers Pippin) - A very high quality English dessert apple first
discovered at Ribston Hall near Knaresborough, Yorkshire. It is believed to have
originated from seeds brought into England from Rouen, France in 1688. In 1962, it
received the Award of Merit from the Royal Horticultural Society. It is described by
Morgan and Richards as the most highly esteemed Victorian dessert apple. Fruit size is
medium to large with unequally large ribs giving the apple an irregular shape. Skin is
greenish-yellow flushed with brownish-orange and numerous red stripes. The flesh is pale
yellow, rich, firm, and juicy. Ripens September to October.
|Rockingham Red (See Allum)
(French Pippin) - This fine American apple arose in
Burlington, New Jersey, and was first described in 1817. The name is derived from the
appearance of a prominent fleshy protuberance at the base of the stem which is said to
resemble an aquiline "Roman nose". The vigorous growing tree has a spreading
growth habit and is very productive. Fruit is small and round with whitish yellow skin and
having a slight brown flush and small dark russet patches. The tender yellow flesh is
tender, mild and juicy, with a rich, spicy and aromatic flavor. Ripens in September.
(Rome, Gillett's Seedling, Foust's Rome Beauty,
Phoenix, Royal Red, Starbuck, Roman Beauty) - One of the most important US
commercial varieties for many years, Rome Beauty is considered one of the
best cooking and processing varieties available. It originated around 1817
when Zebulon and Joel Gillette, along with their brother-in-law, bought
several fruit trees from a nurseryman in Marietta, Ohio. The trees were
taken to Rome Township in Lawrence County, Ohio, and planted there in the
Gillette orchard. According to the historical literature, Joel Gillette
pulled off a root sprout and gave it to his son, saying, "Here is a
democrat, you can have it." The sprout was transplanted in a corner of the
orchard and within a few years began producing large and attractive dark red
apples. Fruit is large to very large, roundish to somewhat oblate in shape.
The thick, smooth skin is yellowish-green almost entirely covered with
bright red and dark carmine stripes. The yellow flesh is firm, crisp and
juicy with a tangy pleasing flavor. Ripens in September to October and keeps
well. Fruit Picture
Russet (Boston Russet, Russet Golden, Leather
Coat) - Roxbury Russet is perhaps the most popular russet apple grown in the south. It is
the oldest American apple and was introduced in Roxbury, Massachusetts with the arrival of the
Pilgrims. Fruit is medium to large with dull greenish-yellow skin covered with a rough
brownish-yellow russet coat. The greenish-white flesh is coarse, firm and juicy with a
pleasing, brisk flavor. Ripens September to October and is a very good keeper.
(Sweet Rusty Coat?) - An old, well-known variety popular
in the South. Origin difficult to trace as any apple with heavy russeting
on the outer skin was typically
called "Rusty Coat." Small to medium in size with
dark greenish-yellow skin and
indistinct red striping overlaid with a heavy, coarse russet coat. Flesh is crisp, tender
and somewhat dry with a pleasant, sweet nutty
flavor. Ripens early September.
Apple Variety Descriptions
Apple Variety Descriptions (E-L)
Apple Variety Descriptions (S-Y)