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Old May 19, 2007   #16
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 602

I love apples as well. Some of my favorites are:
Golden Russet...sweet and rich
Ashmead's Kernal...tart and rich
Black Oxford...hard and tart
Keepsake....deliciously sweet, small core
Chestnut Crab....great for snacking, large crab-type
Macoun...excellently delicious when at peak flavor
Honeycrisp... excellent crisp texture
MN447.....IMO the best I've ever eaten... it's a numbered variety at the U of MN. I tasted it at the U of MN Applehouse. It's a parent of Keepsake and Sweet 16. It's small, with an highly concentrated berry-like flavor. It resembles Keepsake in flavor, except much more flavorful. Outstanding!!!! I've heard it's very winter hardy and keeps very well. I just wish they'd name it and release it. It may be too small for commercial consideration, but I think it would be an awesome home variety, or for specialty markets.
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Old May 19, 2007   #17
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Originally Posted by Patrina_Pepperina View Post
You are ALL killing me!!!!! *groan* I would consider giving up my entire family to live somewhere with an heirloom apple orchard, and land for tomatoes, chillies, citrus, avocados, pumpkins, potatoes, corn, melons, grapes, pomegranates, and a few other things of course

Meanwhile, this is the best I can do. It's an Azerbaijani pomegranate bush.

Patrina, as much as my mouth waters at the mention of heirloom apples, your pic of the Azerbaijani pomegranate bush has got the Armenian in me drooling like a fool. Sighhhhhhhh....

I'm also in Amish country here in Southern Ontario. And they're famous for their heirloom fruits - not just apples. I'm off to a plant sale later this morning at the Doon Heritage Crossroads museum. I'll try to find out which varieties they have. They've got an 1830's-1850's Amish farmhouse, complete with Grosdaddy and kitchen garden. Last time I looked they had at least 15 different fruit trees along side the Amish kitchen garden at DHC. The local farmer's market in St. Jacobs usually has a few Amish/Old Order Mennonites in the fall with various heirloom apples

Its from that Amish kitchen garden (at DHC) that I sourced the "Waterloo County Mennonite Pole Beans" (I've still to get the official name from the plant curator at DHC, so in the meantime that's the name I'm using for them.). All the plants - flowers, veggies and trees growing in the Amish kitchen garden are from saved seeds from the local Amish community. Many are ones that families have been growing/saving since they arrived in Waterloo Region(formerly known as Waterloo County) from Schweiz(Switzerland) and Russia, sometimes via Lancaster, Pennsylvania, back in the early 1800's.
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Old June 18, 2007   #18
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Reading this has really got me going. Wish I had room for an apple tree or three. As it is, there are two or three places locally that grow heirloom apples for sale. I buy boxes of them until the end of season.

Spitzenberg makes lovely fresh eating and an outstanding pie. If you have an boring apples, combine them with some Spitzenbergs.

Ashmead's Kernel is excellent. I'm afraid I don't remember all the varieties I have been able to try. My favorite is still MacIntosh for fresh eating.

Any of the Delicious variations are best, in my opinion, in the Yakima Valley of eastern Washington. If you are ever up that way, give them a try fresh. Excellent.
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Old September 11, 2010   #19
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Bumping this thread to remind anyone wanting to plant some trees that the time rapidly approaches to order and get them in the ground.

I'm clearing a hillside here this weekend for just that purpose.

One last word of farewell, Dear Master and Mistress.

Whenever you visit my grave,

say to yourselves with regret

but also with happiness in your hearts

at the remembrance of my long happy life with you:

"Here lies one who loved us and whom we loved."

No matter how deep my sleep I shall hear you,

and not all the power of death

can keep my spirit

from wagging a grateful tail.
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Old September 11, 2010   #20
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Location: 6a - NE Tennessee
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What an absolutely gorgeous picture that Andrey posted. Of course, with all the canning this year, what I see in that picture is Apple Butter to eat when the snow is on the ground.

Ahhhhh! Daydreaming about good things to eat.

Owner & Sole Operator Of
The Muddy Bucket Tomato Ranch

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Old September 11, 2010   #21
Join Date: May 2007
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Regarding my previous post on this thread.
The MN 447 apple has since been named and released to the public. It's called Frostbite. I have a tree of it planted in the yard.
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Old September 11, 2010   #22
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If you are looking for heirloom fruit trees, there is a nursery in California that specializes in heirlooms. They have been in business since the '70s, and are Certified Organic.
Here is a link:

Trees of Antiquity

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Old September 11, 2010   #23
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I would highly recommend the following company in NC.
Over 400 varieties of Old Southern Apples!

They have an open house in November where you get to sample from their varieties. Here's a shot from their web
site showing a sampling table from the past.

The three trees I got a couple of years ago are doing very
well, and I am looking forward to finally getting fruit off of
these in two/three more years.

Intelligence is knowing a tomato is a fruit.
Wisdom is knowing not to put one in a fruit salad.

Cuostralee - The best thing on sliced bread.
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Old September 12, 2010   #24
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good link for southern growers who need trees that will produce in their climate. Thanks.
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Old October 10, 2010   #25
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It's not about heirloom apples and I know that apples don't grow true from seed, but I couldn't resist germinating some seeds of a high vitamin apple that I enjoyed in Europe last year!

What interests me out of this bunch is that there are some tall seedlings and a couple medium height ones, plus a couple that seem very dwarf (and I'm quite interested in dwarfs as some of you know)

I have no idea what I will do with most of these, but I will try growing the dwarfs in pots. The tiny plant in the bottom row is just a strawberry plant that I grew from seed too.

Truth is colourful, not just black and white. PP: 2005
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Old October 10, 2010   #26
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Location: Vaasa, Finland, latitude N 63°
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If erything goes fine, ten years from now this will be our heirloom apple orchard.

We planted yesterday 48 apple trees. I do not know, if these are considered as heirloom apples, but they originate from 1850 to early 1900s. Some were created in 1940s in a nursery, which used to be in the area I see from our kitchen window. They are listed as rare varieties, since they were re-discovered few years ago and are now grown by a nursery 100 miles north.
Distributor in our city was selling all trees at half price and we got quite good deal when we purchased almost all what they had.

My mother in-law thinks that we are crazy planting so many apple trees and not keep the field for potatoes...
"I only want to live in peace, plant potatoes and dream."
- Moomin-troll by Tove Jansson
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Old October 16, 2010   #27
Medbury Gardens
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You do your orchard a lot like i do mine svalli with leaving the grass to grow as a living mulch.In my orchard i planted white&red clover and lucerne among the grasses which never gets mowed.

In my area of the South Island apple trees grow wild on the side of the roads and along railway lines,they have grown from apples that over the years that had been thrown out the windows of passing cars,the apples by railtracks grew from railway workers throwing the apple cores away.
About half the apples in my orchard come from wild roadside trees,out of the hundreds they we know of, only about 1 out of 20 are any good,most are very tarty.
I know this thread is about heirloom apples but i suppose these trees are really just nameless heirlooms.

For example in the next photo there's three old apple trees,the first on the left is very tarty and only good for feeding to our cow,second is ok,but still not nice enough to be grown at our place,the third (behind the road sign) is also just ok.
Me and the kids know where all the best trees are and will pick the fruit when its ready.

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Old October 17, 2010   #28
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Northern Virginia, USA - zone 7+
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This won't help for new selections, but for an orchard that far north, if you're looking to ID old varieties, a lot of them may have come out of the collections in New York state. Look for a book The Apples of New York by Beach (1903, NY Dept of Ag). It's particularly useful as it describes all aspects of tree and fruit, and covers both varieties which were classics or antiques at the time of writing, and recent introductions as of that date.

There are two volumes, one for early and one for late-season apples. I've got only the first volume, unfortunately, but it helped me a lot, along with a couple of orchard visits down here in VA, to identify retroactively varieties which I enjoyed growing up with 3 old orchards on our farm.

Not limited to apples, but another good reference is Cyclopedia of Hardy Fruits by Hedrick (Macmillan 1938). Can you tell that my tomato enthusiasm is a relative latecomer?

***oops - didn't look at the date! I hope this will be useful to others...

Last edited by gardenpaws_VA; October 17, 2010 at 12:31 AM. Reason: realized this was 3 yrs out of date - glad people have bumped it!
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Old December 27, 2010   #29
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Zavalla Tx
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which apple varieties grow best in East Texas,with our summer heat??????????does anybody in Texas grow apples?
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Old December 27, 2010   #30
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It is time to do some due diligence. Dig around on the net and you will find a few apples that will work in your climate. Only problem is that you are asking the wrong question. It is not a matter of tolerating your heat, rather, you need an apple that will tolerate your lack of cold. Apples require a minimum number of chilling hours to bloom normally. Most apples will be unhappy because you have relatively mild winters.

Do a google search for "low chill apple" and you might find a few things to read.

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