Saturday, 29 September 2012

Survey of apple trees growing on Moorside Allotments

I am thinking of buying a new apple tree or trees.  I want one I can use for cooking as well as an eater, so it might be one apple which combines both virtues, or I might have to get two trees, one of each. Doesn't necessarily have to be a good keeper or particularly prolific.

So I am doing a little survey among the plotholders of what apple grows well in our local conditions.
IF ANYONE ELSE IN THIS LOCALITY HAS A VARIETY OR EXPERIENCE TO CONTRIBUTE, FEEL FREE TO COMMENT.

So far.....

Named varieties

Ribston pippin   *****   dual purpose, good keeper, but the example here is quite a big tree and supposedly on M27 stock.

Scrumptious      ***     dessert, went spotty.

Discovery          ****     dessert, loses flavour soon after picking, not a keeper.

James Grieve      *****   dual purpose, tasted this myself and it was lovely flavour, sharp, sweet, but softish and not a keeper, apparently. Tree had quite a lot of apples even this bad year.

Discovery/James Grieve/ unknown (grafted tree)***** Owner very pleased, gets a succession over the autumn.

Kidd's Orange Red  *****dessert, sharp/sweet cox-like flavour, cropped well. Owner has 3/4 of these in different rootstock.  The only one that had fruit in this bad year was the columnar version which had quite a lot of apples.

Greensleeves * parentage Golden Delicious, eat fresh, not a happy specimen.

Egremont Russet ***good flavour but owner a bit disappointed.

Current opinion is leaning towards a container grown M27 stock, as hopefully can better control the water and soil quality.
 Pros...moveable in bad weather, better drainage.
 Cons....will need closer monitoring in summer for watering and feeding.   Might get blown over. Might get frozen.

The decision on the variety has been made. I have ordered a Kidd's orange red and a Howgate wonder, both M26 cordons, from Blackmoor Nurseries

I haven't yet decided whether to plant them in pots or in the ground.

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