Apples are the holy grail of organic growers east of the Mississippi. The host of diseases and insect pests that are drawn to this fruit makes it difficult to harvest supermarket-quality fruit without resorting to synthetic pesticides. However, by planting new (and old) disease-resistant cultivars, paying attention to soil nutrients and possibly using organic pest deterrents, it is possible to eat bright, shiny flawless apples off of your own tree. Locally-adapted varieties/rootstocks and healthy growing conditions are also keys in the puzzle of organic apple production. Space dwarf apples 6-8’ apart; semi-dwarfs 15-20’ apart, seedling Antonovka 20-30' apart. All grafted plants unless otherwise noted.
Bud-9 is a full dwarf which grows a tree 6-8’ tall and needs to be permanently staked or trellised. It happens to increase fruit size slightly even though it dwarfs the tree form! Even though dwarf apple rootstocks are shallow-rooted, we have found that Bud-9 is remarkably resistant to drought conditions.
M-111 is a semi-dwarf reaching 18’ (but can be kept pruned to 14’), is self anchored (require no staking), does incredibly well on heavy clay soils, and is both drought and wet soils tolerant.
Antonovka: Limited selection of apples on this standard/seedling rootstock will make full size trees reaching 30' plus, very deep-rooted, cold hardy, drought hardy and if the rootstock should overtake the graft, it will produce decent large yellow apples on its own!
All varieties we offer are early– or mid-season bloomers, so are compatible with each other for pollination (exception: see ‘Mutsu’ below).
Listed in order of ripening (approximate ripening dates are for our area)
‘Redfree' Apple : Early August. An outstanding disease resistant apple from the PRI breeding program. Cherry red over most of the apples; a few may have hint of green on shade side. More flavorful and crisp for fresh eating than most summer apples. Also a good farmer’s market potential due to its earliness and bright cheery color! Like most summer apples, not a good keeper—maybe 3 weeks with good cold storage. Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘MOLLIE'S DELICIOUS' Apple : Late August. A more southerly adapted apple, doing best in zones 5-8. Very large, crisp and sweet. Pretty red blush and striping over a yellow background. Known to have resistance to some diseases so has potential for organic growers. Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘Geneva' Crabapple Apple : Late Summer. Great edible landscaping choice - beautiful red flowers and foliage, and 2" round fruits are red all the way through the flesh. Their intense color, sharp flavor and slight astringency makes them great for cider, jelly, and fancy preserves. Darren really likes them fresh too, especially paired with cheese. Hardy variety zones 3-6 Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘Liberty' Apple : Mid September. Touted as the most disease-resistant of the PRI apples, this tree has performed remarkably well for us, producing flawless shiny fruit with minimum of care. Seems to resist insect damage as well as fungal diseases. We recommend Liberty the most of all our apples. Fruit is deep purple-red on the sun side and bright green on the shade side, having a flavor like a more sprightly and crisp McIntosh. Need to thin this variety heavily or fruit size can be small. A decent keeper in storage. Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘CHESTNUT CRAB' Apple : Early Fall. Edible crab apples are beautiful bloomers as well as disease-resistant fruit producers. Chestnut Crab is famous for its incredibly sweet but complex 1-1/2” fruits that are red striped over yellow background. Perfect size for children to munch down if there’s any left for them! Good for a sweet, no-sugar added applesauce. White blossoms. Not the best keeper, about a month. Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘MUTSU (CRISPIN)' Apple : Mid October. Known for its refreshing crisp and juicy texture. Yellow delicious-type flavor that has a hint of licorice in the background and much less mealy. A greenish-yellow when ripe, fruit is large compared to most apples. Supposedly susceptible to some diseases yet we are offering it because it has been a star performer for us even with neglect! Actually beats out some of the apples with known disease resistance. Decent keeper. [NOTE: Mutsu is a triploid variety; it does not provide viable pollen, and still needs a pollinator; plant with two other varieties to have fruit on all of them] Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘HUDSON'S GOLDEN GEM' Apple : Late October. Hudson’s is a little more refined in surface appearance than other russet apples—yellow skin with light russeting. It is noted to have some resistance to diseases, and all russets are slightly more insect resistant due to thicker skin and harder young fruitlets. This apple is hard, dry and tart at ripening time but mellows out to a sweet pear-like flavor in storage. Good keeper. Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘Antonovka seedlings Apple : Normally used as rootstock, this Russian variety comes true-to-type from seed. Very cold-hardy, deep-rooted, drought-hardy full-sized trees to 30' or more. Plant two seedlings or with another apple variety to pollinate. Full Sun. Size & Price: Quart pots $6; gallon* pots $12 +tax
‘ARKANSAS BLACK' Apple : Early November. An heirloom apple most often noted for its disease resistance, general hardiness and outstanding keeping abilities. Very late to ripen, fruits are a gorgeous dark purplish-red and rock hard at picking. Time in storage softens them a little and the flavor goes towards the sweet side. Extremely good storage apple--we still have some that are soft but edible in our fridge in May! Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
*size designations are nominal. We use “trade gallons” (which are slightly less than a gallon) as well as recycled pots that may vary in exact size. There are a limited number of two gallon plants available – first come first serve.