Anyhow, lots of Easter red cedars in the area, some pretty large ones at my farm that I don’t want to remove as well as smaller ones that form wind breaks.
I would like to plant a few apple trees…but I want ones that are very low maintenance and disease resistant.
What are your experiences?
Here is a list of some apples I have on my list of potential choices that seem to fit my desires according to their descriptions… but I don’t have any personal experience , sooooo… who knows how accurate the internet is:
I am growing Williams pride and pristine. They are only in their 2nd leaf but neither had any CAR unlike my russets. Here it seems to be mostly cosmetic damage to leaves so far. They seem to be the two generally recommended early highly disease resistant apples.
I’ve been meaning to cut cedars (junipers) for posts…but haven’t yet. Cedar apple rust pretty bad at my orchard this year. Have been too busy to take good notes on cultivars suffering and ones clean.
My “not MacIntosh” is clean, as is Fuji and Braeburn. And Niedzetzkyana and Redfield, Odysso and Veralma Simontornya are pretty free of rust. Anoka has a bad case, as usual. And an apple called “ooten” is perhaps suffering the most…and Claygate Pearmain.
For alternative views you can go to the orange pippin website. They have different tabs for each fruit. That includes a description, reviews and fruit ID. The fruit ID tab has information on disease resistance and the growth habit of trees as well as a lot of other info. For Sundance here is the entry.
Generally, the Purdue chart is pretty good. But you have to remember most of the disease ratings come from observations in field trials. The trials only take place at certain locations. Although some ratings are from controlled studies in the case of fire blight with modern and commercially important apples at least. The same apple may be rated as resistant to cedar apple rust in Illinois where it was trialed but found to be susceptible in Arkansas later where the disease pressure is much higher. So it’s good to look at several sources for disease ratings.
You can also use the search function in the forum to look for the apples and their disease resistance. There will be a fair amount of info for William’s Pride and Liberty not so much for the others. You are basically at the same place I was several years ago. I searched the internet and the forums and tried to pick trees that had resistance to the diseases I expected to see in my local area.
I don’t think you can go wrong with Liberty and William’s Pride as far as disease resistance… they are about as good as they get. Also what state are you in? You say you’re on the zone 5/6 border. In some states you may have problems with scab or other diseases.
I have William’s Pride. I grafted it in 2017 and used Bud 9 rootstock. It bloomed heavily this year but it is really narrow (but 7 feet tall) so I picked the blooms off. The leaves have always looked pretty good and I do have cedar apple rust but I don’t think the disease pressure is high here.
I’m in central Illinois at the zone 5/6 border. I have scab and some cedar apple rust but no fireblight or powder mildew. But a local orchard has fireblight on susceptible cultivars. You will probably see these locally too.
One thing I should mention is diseases are just half the battle. Insects attacking the fruit is a major problem. Sometimes there is a honeymoon period for a few years and you don’t see them. But at some point they will show up. When they do you will need to bag the fruit or spray Surround or spray an insecticide.
Here is a organic spray schedule and a synthetic spray schedule