By: Becca Badgett, Co-author of How to Grow an EMERGENCY Garden
One of the joys of autumn is having fresh apples, especially when you can pick them from your own tree. Those in more northern areas are told they cannot grow the Golden Delicious tree because it cannot take the cold temperatures there. There is a cold hardy substitute, however, for gardeners in colder spots who wish to grow apples. Honeygold apple info says the tree can grow and produce successfully as far north as USDA hardiness zone 3. Honeygold apple trees can take low temps of -50 degrees F. (-46 C.).
The flavor of the fruit is quite similar to Golden Delicious, only a bit blander. One source describes it as Golden Delicious with honey on it. Fruits have greenish yellow skin and are ready to pick in October.
Learning how to grow Honeygold apples is similar to growing other apple tree varieties. Apple trees are easy to grow and keep at a relatively small size with regular winter pruning. In spring, blossoms decorate the landscape. Fruits ripen in autumn and are ready to harvest.
Plant apple trees in full to part sun in well-draining soil. Make a well around the tree to hold water. In home orchards, apple trees can be kept less than 10 feet (3 m.) tall and wide with winter pruning but will grow larger if allowed. Keep the soil moist until the Honeygold apple tree is established.
Newly planted apple trees need regular water, about once to twice per week depending on the weather and soil. Hot temperatures and high winds will cause faster evapotranspiration, requiring more water. Sandy soils drain faster than clay and will also require more frequent water. Reduce the frequency of irrigation in the fall as temperatures cool down. Discontinue water in the winter while the apple tree is dormant.
Once established, trees are watered every seven to ten days or once every two weeks by soaking the root zone. This guideline is the same for drought conditions, as apple trees do not need a high amount of water. Keeping soil moist is ideal rather than bone dry or saturated. How often and how much water depends on the size of the tree, time of year, and type of soil.
If watering with a hose, fill your watering well twice, so water goes down deep rather than watering too frequently. If watering with sprinklers, bubblers, or drip system it is better to water long enough to reach field capacity, rather than providing little water frequently.
Prune your Honeygold apple tree in winter. In home orchards, most keep their apple trees less than 10 to 15 feet (3-4.5 m.) tall and wide. They can grow larger, given the time and space. An apple tree can grow to 25 feet (8 m.) in 25 years.
Fertilize organically in the winter with flower and bloom fruit tree food to help increase springtime blossoms and autumn fruits. Use organic fruit tree growth fertilizers in the spring and summer to keep leaves green and healthy.
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A distinctively yellowish-green apple with good, sweet flavor, notably hardy, keeps well eating apples are high maintenance and need a second pollinator the perfect combination of accent and fruit tree, needs well-drained soil and full sun
Honeygold Apple is a small tree that is commonly grown for its edible qualities. It produces large yellow round apples (which are botanically known as 'pomes') with hints of red and white flesh which are usually ready for picking from mid to late fall. The apples have a sweet taste and a crisp texture.
The apples are most often used in the following ways:
Honeygold Apple features showy clusters of lightly-scented white flowers with shell pink overtones along the branches in mid spring, which emerge from distinctive pink flower buds. It has forest green foliage throughout the season. The pointy leaves turn yellow in fall. The fruits are showy yellow apples with hints of red, which are carried in abundance in mid fall. The fruit can be messy if allowed to drop on the lawn or walkways, and may require occasional clean-up.
This is a deciduous tree with a more or less rounded form. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition. This is a high maintenance plant that will require regular care and upkeep, and is best pruned in late winter once the threat of extreme cold has passed. Gardeners should be aware of the following characteristic(s) that may warrant special consideration
Aside from its primary use as an edible, Honeygold Apple is sutiable for the following landscape applications
Honeygold Apple will grow to be about 20 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 20 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 4 feet from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a medium rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 50 years or more. This variety requires a different selection of the same species growing nearby in order to set fruit.
This tree is typically grown in a designated area of the yard because of its mature size and spread. It should only be grown in full sunlight. It prefers to grow in average to moist conditions, and shouldn't be allowed to dry out. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This particular variety is an interspecific hybrid.
KinderKrisp is a small but very crispy and sweet red apple. It ripens in late August in S.E WI and is an exceptionally good early apple. The crispiness comes from one of its parents, the famous Honeycrisp apple. While the fruit may be smaller than Honeycrisp, it is by no means small on flavor. This selection allows apple aficionados of all ages the chance to savor the unique “Honeycrisp- like” flavor that KinderKrisp offers several weeks before the Honeycrisp crop is even ripe.
We offer this variety on M7 rootstock which is semi-dwarf and free-standing. This variety is best for fresh eating only. Excellent choice for children as the fruit is just the right size.
Apple trees are relished by deer, numerous small mammals, and insects.
Annual pruning during the dormant season (late winter-early spring) is suggested to promote an open tree canopy that will allow better sunlight penetration and air flow for best fruit quality. Find more information on Training & Pruning Fruit Trees.
Numerous as is the case with all apple varieties. Following a spray program or growing the fruit in bags (paper, cloth or plastic) is suggested in order to obtain a quality fruit crop. Find a spraying guide and more information on Best Pesticides For The Home Orchardist.
This variety was developed by David MacGregor of Fairhaven Farm in Minnesota. David is an orchardist and apple breeder. Fairhaven Farms has selected and named several new apple varieties from their independent breeding program.
KinderKrisp Apple must be cross-pollinated with a crabapple or different apple variety to produce fruit.
Even professional orchardists consider the Honeycrisp apple tree to be tough to grow, so it's a challenging variety for the home gardener. It's scab-resistant but otherwise susceptible to many diseases: Black rot, powdery mildew and fire blight are all common. Heat and sunburn can be issues, too, though that's less of a risk in the Bay Area.
The tree's wood is also unusually brittle, which means it's prone to breakage from winds, or even just the weight of fruit on its branches. As the apples reach maturity, you'll need to support the branches, and even then they may break at the point where they're supported. You'll need to manually thin the apples to get fewer, larger fruit instead of many small ones. And if you allow the tree to fruit too heavily, it may only offer a harvest every other year.
Disease-resistant varieties cut down on the amount of spraying.
An older, well-known variety, 'Cortland' produces medium-sized, bright red apples with a sprightly tropical flavor that are perfect for fresh eating and cooking.
Photo by: Image courtesy of Bailey Nurseries
Image courtesy of Bailey Nurseries
Having a couple of productive, low-maintenance apple trees in the backyard — ones that yield serviceable crops without lots of spraying — sometimes seems like an impossible dream. If the apple is America's favorite fruit, it's also the favorite of several significant diseases and pests.
Depending on the geographical region and the weather, apple trees can be beset by cedar-apple rust, powdery mildew, fire blight, bitter rot and apple scab. Among the bugs, there are codling moths, plum curculios, mites, aphids, scale and leaf rollers.
What usually helps the gardener is choosing disease-resistant cultivars. These varieties won't prevent the bugs from coming to your trees, of course, but they'll at least offer a good shot at thwarting whichever diseases tend to plague apple trees in your area. Planting varieties like these — or others as recommended by your local extension agent (how well any given cultivar does has everything to do with region) — can drastically cut down on the amount of spraying you have to do.
Liberty. One of the best disease-resistant cultivars, Liberty is highly resistant to apple scab and resistant to cedar apple rust and fire blight. It ranges from moderately resistant to susceptible to powdery mildew. A medium-size McIntosh-like fruit that ripens midseason it's sweet, juicy and crisp color is red-stripe-over-greenish-yellow. It blooms midseason, so pair with other mid- or late-blooming cultivars. USDA Zones 4 to 7.
Enterprise. Resistant or field immune to apple scab, highly resistant to cedar apple rust and fire blight, and variably moderately resistant to susceptible to powdery mildew. The large, bright red, glossy apple has a juicy, spicy and crisp flavor it's thick-skinned. The tree blooms in mid- to late-season and the fruit ripens late. It keeps for months under refrigeration, and its flavor improves after the first month. Pair with Goldrush, Gala and Golden Delicious. USDA Zones 5 to 7.
Goldrush. This variety is field immune to apple scab, highly resistant to fire blight, and moderately resistant to powdery mildew. It's susceptible to cedar-apple rust, however, so choose another variety if you live in an area where cedar-apple rust is common. It blooms late pair with Enterprise, Gala or Golden Delicious. The fruit is large, yellow, semi-tart, crisp and juicy. The fruit ripens late and keeps well.
Pristine. This cultivar is field immune to apple scab, resistant to cedar apple rust, highly resistant to powdery mildew, and moderately resistant to fire blight. It blooms early pair with Liberty, Pristine, William's Pride, Redfree or Jonafree. The large, yellow fruit is tart and crisp. Great for cooking. Ripens early.
Redfree. Field immune to apple scab and cedar apple rust, moderately resistant to fire blight and powdery mildew, Redfree blooms in midseason. Pair with other mid- and late-blooming cultivars. The medium-sized, bright red fruit is sweet and crisp. Ripens early and keeps about one month in the refrigerator.
Those are just a few of the great disease-resistant apples you could be planting. A couple of other points:
So, about the bugs. These good cultural practices provide a little protection against pest attacks: