apple recommendations for swmo?

robiniaquest(z6 MO)February 16, 2008

Hi everyone. I am getting ready to start a new orchard, and I was wondering if anyone can give some recommendations for apples that do well here. I was trying to go for varieties that resist cedar apple rust, because I'm on a hill in the middle of woods with cedars all around that could never be eliminated in a lifetime. This is in Barry County.

In my Dad's orchard (in Lawrence County - very different conditions) we planted Red Delicious, Egremont Russet, and Wolf River. All did fine as far as disease was concerned - main problem was insects. Some pears in the same orchard got hit by fire blight, but not too bad, and not every year.

I don't want to just copy what they grow at the local orchards, because I'm sure some of their considerations are probably different from a home orchard situation, e.g. marketability, etc.

Any suggestions?

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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Consider Arkansas Black (Winesap seedling). It's a popular seller. I have the same problem with cedar rust and it and Granny Smith have done the best for me. We also have 3 4-in-1 trees and the rust doesn't seem to bother them much as long as I spray early enough. But I don't think you would want an orchard of them. ;)

Apple Journal has a good list of disease resistant varieties. I linked it below. And you should also check with your local county extension office for production tips for your area. U. of Arkansas Extension offers lots of great info and likely the Missouri Extension offices do too.

Good luck.;)

Dave

Here is a link that might be useful: Apple Journal

    Bookmark   February 17, 2008 at 6:00PM
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robiniaquest(z6 MO)

Dave,
Thanks for you response. Do your Granny Smith apples taste significantly different from the ones in the grocery store? My kids love those, but I was hoping they might be a bit sweeter home-grown. I was also considering Arkansas Black, but I'm not a huge fan of the flavor or texture of those. My parents love them for pies. I should probably ask - what apples have NOT done well for you?

I checked the web resources you recommended, and got some additional ideas. There's also a lot of good stuff online about the history of fruit growing in this region. Really interesting reading. I can't figure out how to do links, unfortunately. My computer skills are not the best.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2008 at 10:06AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Hi robiniaquest - Our GS apples are definitely crisper than I remember store bought ones being but it's been so long since i tasted a store-bought I can't really claim they are any sweeter - no basis for comparison. ;)

I'm glad the links helped and wish you lots of luck with the orchard. It's work but well worth it!

Dave

    Bookmark   February 20, 2008 at 8:53PM
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robiniaquest(z6 MO)

Thanks Dave. I'm really glad to hear you say an orchard is worth the trouble. If you read some of the stuff put out by MU, you'd think there's no apple in existence worth growing in Missouri!

    Bookmark   February 22, 2008 at 9:23AM
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ceresone(missouri ozarks)

I havent looked up the names of the ones already established, but heres what I've ordered this year--wish me luck
Honeycrisp
Sundance
Pixie Crunch
Granny Smith
Thats just the apples.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2008 at 11:00AM
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robiniaquest(z6 MO)

Good luck on your orchard, ceresone. I almost ordered Granny Smith, but wondered a little about it having enough ripening time here. Maybe next year - my kids really want that one.
Here's what I ordered for my new orchard.

Apples:
Stayman Winesap
York
Golden Russet
Roxbury Russet
St. Edmund's Pippin
Fireside
Black Limbertwig
Mammoth Black Twig
Black Ben Davis
Yates

All of these show at least some resistance to cedar apple rust (except possibly York, but that's one of my all-time favorite apples, available at Murphy's in Marionville most years). A lot of them are disease resistant across the board. All are recommended for the South. It took me a while to figure out that that might be what we need here. Extension info warns that a lot of widely grown apples go soft here in our heat. So, I started reading whatever I could about fruit growing in the Ozarks way back in the old days when it was the major industry. The varieties planted back then were old Southern varieties, for the most part, and they held up in the heat and high disease pressure of our area. I talked to a guy in VA, who gave me lots of advice. Look up Urban Homestead Nursery in Bristol, VA.

We'll see what happens. It's kind of an experiment. In fact, my whole gardening strategy this year is shifting to looking back at what they did in the old days, and seeing if that works better. My grandfather was a strawberry and tomato grower, and my Dad still follows his methods. This year, I'm starting from scratch, and doing a major part of my gardening his way.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2008 at 12:23PM
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