Carlos Queen and other apple questions

weeper_11(2b SK)January 20, 2013

This spring I plan to plant a few apple trees in my new, deer-fenced orchard. So far I am planning on Carlos Queen, Norkent, and maybe Red Sparkle? I'm not sure, I haven't done enough research yet. I like tart apples(like Mac's) that are good for fresh eating but also have at least some storage potential.

I'm also interested in espaliering them, so I plan to buy the trees as young whips from this nursery: http://www.littletreenursery.com/ I've bought other trees from them before..almost all of them are grafted. The only fault I have found with them is that they seem to be quite slow. I don't know if that is due to poor grafting, or what. Other, larger trees that I have bought from nurseries like Dutch Growers, Lakeshore, etc., have taken off much faster. So that is one reason I am hesitant to buy fruit trees from them..but I don't know where else I can get very young fruit trees from. I love the architecture and practicality of espalier, but maybe I should just can that idea?!

If anyone has experience with espalier: since these aren't dwarf trees, how do you figure out how far apart to space them? The point would be to prevent them from growing taller than probably 6 ft. So most of their growth would be horizontally, along wire supports. Can a apple tree be grown to a certain size and then kept that size, without compromising the trees health? Will the trees simply wind up being smaller naturally when espaliered?

Anyway, comments on anything or everything are appreciated..Konrad, I'm looking especially at you!

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weeper_11(2b SK)

On second look...I can get these varieties on a dwarf root stock..so that issue is solved at least.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2013 at 6:40PM
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beegood_gw

I'd never heard of it but it ( Carlos Queen ) sounds like a good eating apple.Hardy too.I'm Konrad will be able to give you lots of help.Let us know how the Carlos Queen does.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2013 at 9:40AM
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Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

Some people like Carlos Queen, ..It wasn't a WOW for me when tasting, maybe it wasn't in it's prime, might need storing?

That early Mac from you, Beegood was better I.M.O.

Apple trees grow pretty slow in our harsh climate, ..I wouldn't use dwarfing root stock. That might be the reason why your trees didn't grow very much,...on dwarfing stock?

It should work pretty well for a trellis system,..it's just that it needs more care and pruning/training etc. Have branches about a foot apart or a little more, there should be allot of info. on the web.

I'm still eating crisp delicious Norkent apples.
One has to find out,..who is still eating crisp apples at this time around and what are they?

Here is a link that might be useful: Carlos Queen

    Bookmark   January 21, 2013 at 11:28PM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

Sure wish I had the opportunity to try some of these apples before I buy. Anyone know anyone in the Saskatoon area growing these?

    Bookmark   January 22, 2013 at 7:57AM
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beegood_gw

You shud come out to Edmonton to their fruit festival every fall. The local and area growers bring out samples of kinds of fruit hardy to the area that they grow here.You can taste them all. It's held at Devonian Botanical Gardens just north of Devon. Think about it. You'll be amazed at the variety. And Konrad will be there so you can ask him lots of questions.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2013 at 8:40AM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

I would love to! We farm, so fall is usually a can't-go-anywhere time of year, but if it works out that would be a very fun trip!

    Bookmark   January 24, 2013 at 2:00PM
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beegood_gw

Post if you can come and for sure we can meet there. Wud be great to meet forum members from other areas.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2013 at 4:36PM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

That would be fun, I would have to give Ginny a visit too! Edmonton seems to be home to quite a few of our members.

One more apple question - what was the early Mac apple that Konrad was talking about? Does it have a particular name? I know they have a Mac apple at the local greenhouse, but I thought I had heard that they aren't usually hardy here. Maybe they just meant because I live outside of the city climate.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2013 at 2:07PM
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beegood_gw

If you have been to edmonton and have seen Greenland Nursery just past the Fort Sasketchewan exit . I live 2 miles straght north of there and we cud have coffee at GrLnd, My hardy Mac just said Hardy Mac on the label. No specific one. I heard there may be more than one type. Anyways looking forward to meeting you. Hope to have coffee with Ginny at Greenland this spring....ingrid

    Bookmark   January 25, 2013 at 6:07PM
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Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

Yes,..hopefully you can make it in the fall, there are so many to taste!

    Bookmark   January 25, 2013 at 9:17PM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

Another apple question:

Does anyone grow Prairie Sensation? How do you like it?

What is your best apple for long lasting storage? What is your best fresh apple?

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 2:32PM
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twrosz

Weeper, indeed the fruit tasting event at the Devonian Gardens will have you coming away with the names and possible sources of apples that totally fit the bill. You'll be amazed of the high quality apples, pears, grapes cherries etc. being locally grown.

    Bookmark   February 7, 2013 at 8:59PM
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beegood_gw

Gee all the Garden Web people shud meet at the fesival. Sounds like there might be quite a few of us.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2013 at 10:52AM
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Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

>>What is your best apple for long lasting storage? What is your best fresh apple? I've been saying this before, but seeing is believing.
Today's picture, Norkent, sweet, crisp with the right amount of acid, these are about as good as any store bought apples. I only keep these because they're the best eating and keeping.

These are as good as the day when picked, I don't think anything else grown in Alberta can beat this one.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 2:09AM
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beegood_gw

Hey that looks pretty good. I will have to get one of them---if I can find one in a pot that I can carry and dig in.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 7:47AM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

Konrad, I do plan on getting a Norkent anyway, but I have read in a few places that Norkent loses it's flavour in storage after awhile. Do you find this with yours?

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 9:31AM
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Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

I find, in general all apples loose flavor over time, have tested several cultivars we grow but Norkent was the only apple still crisp in April, all others were soft by Christmas.
Collet was also soft my Christmas but still remained good flavor. From now on I only store these two.

Flavor, firmness, crispness, appearance, depend allot by how they're stored, for some reason I hit the check pot this winter. The apples in plastic bag, [picture] held up the best, they were stored in 3 fridges, mine, mother in law and brother in law who stayed oversee for a couple of month, fridge hardly ever opened. The apples in my fridge ended up the worst, apples were all in same bags.

Next year I want to test some in vacuum bags and root cellar,..if finished?

I just send a letter to the head guy from our fruit growing group
to see if members can show pictures and report which one's are holding up best over a long period.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 2:35PM
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intotheark

prairie sensation - grows well but is a biennial bearer for me,
and the flavor is so-so (i will be grafting other varieties onto it)

i ordered another 'new' variety with the sensation from the u of s, called 'prairie sun', again a biennial bearer, and it randomly aborts all the fruit at once (another candidate for grafting this year)

sometimes the newer varieties are more of a novelty,
as the genetics are not quite there

i like Konrad's thoughts, and planted a couple of more norkents last year, and a few other proven 'older' varieties

the best eating apples last season were the september ruby
smaller apple, but crisp and sweet
and the 'm360', huge apples (see pic at link)
a little tart with a slight strawberry aftertaste

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 7:42PM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

I'm definitely most interested in apples that have some tart flavor to them; my husband and I both eat either Granny Smith or Mac apples. I don't mind Gala's and others..I don't like Red Delicious. Too often has a mealy texture and a bit of a bitter taste.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 6:51PM
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Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

Same me, don't like the red delicious.

I don't think we have to worry too much in our climate growing something like this, most get enough acid I think.

The worst one I grew which I had from the sprout farm was a little sweet crab apple which was blaaa...got rid of it.
Can't remember the name.

intotheark,
Nice looking M360!
How does it store,..lets say compare to your Sept. Ruby.

Sept. Ruby is nice when ready but looses flavor and get soft fast.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 8:09PM
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intotheark

we only stored them for about 8 weeks,
before processing

they were stored in plastic bags (just grocery bags left open at the top)
in an unheated storage room

the m360's were still firm and did not lose much flavor

you are right about the sept ruby losing flavor,
but they did retain their crispness

all in all 2012 was a really good year for us, fruit-wise

thanks again for all your tips Konrad,
it did help us make decisions as to which varieties to plant last year

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 2:44PM
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Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

I found a prairie apple list.

Not bad but some written doesn't agree with me.

Here is a link that might be useful: PRAIRIE APPLE CULTIVARS

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 11:15PM
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