"Best" apricot for New England (6b)?

Yes, I grafted it last year, and the graft has two fruits that are starting to become yellow now.

My Orangered tree is in as poor condition as my Tomcot. I also have a Moorpark and a supposedly Blenheim (I suspect it was mislabeled) that are struggling, though not as bad as the Tomcot and Orangered.

I much prefer Tomcot flavor over Robada’s.

I paid $30, $70 is way too much for any fruit tree.

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The link you provided offered them for $70.

I don’t taste much difference between Tomcot and Robada… Equal brix but neither have what I consider perfect cot texture. Robada is larger. Neither is as sweet as Sugar Pearls, but both are delicious. However, you cannot judge any variety without about 10 years experience with it, and then you only know how it performs on the site you’ve tested it. However, if Robada turns out to be more resistant to bac spot then Tomcot, I would see no reason to grow Tom… but it was never my favorite cot to begin with. Like I’ve said, it doesn’t make a thick sauce when you cook it and once your trees are really producing, that might become important. One can eat only so many fresh and during the winter months pulling apricot sauce out of the freezer is a much longer lasting reward than the fresh harvest. .

Right now my cots are competing with Spring Satin apriums, huge black berries, unlimited blueberries, Flavor May peaches and Raspberries. The slight difference in flavors between varieties of the same species gets pretty diluted to my palate.

Brix is high this year because of so much sun compared to the last 4 years up until this time. This is the first year I’ve tasted Robada… let’s see how it does when it’s too wet.


They used to offer a the bare root tree for $30-35, and potted tree for $70. They stopped selling to home growers and this website is not functional anymore.

I like Tomcot on wet years, because it becomes more juicy.

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A few sunny days later, and White Knockout is amazing good! Very flavorful, aromatic, and very sweet. I took brix reading of two, one was 20.5 and the other was 21.5, and that’s despite the rain. Even the good Ilonas are a level or two below White Knockout in flavor and sweetness. Even though it is my first crop of White Knockout, I would judge it as the perfect apricot: flavor, sweetness, fruit size, productivity and visual appeal.

To me, Ilona and Orangered are very similar in flavor and are good to very good, they clearly are very different from White Knockout, Blenheim and Tomcot in flavor profile.

I took out the latter since it was getting crowded and was indeed not very different from the former. NJA105, Tomcot, and Florilege were the best for me this year. The NJA105 and Florilege were often around 25 Brix.

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I will remove my Orangered in the fall/spring, after I harvest some scions from it. The tree has bad canker and is looking very sad.

In general, how different is NJA105 in flavor vs Ilona?

Where did you get NJA105 and Florilege? ACN doesn’t offer them and that’s where I get most of my trees. ACN sells mostly to commercial growers so tends to sell productive varieties.

Do you still consider Sugar Pearls to be of mediocre quality? It is, by far, my highest brix cot. Alfred is, by far, my most reliable cropper and toughest tree. The fruit can get scab though and it ripens a bit late. It’s also small.

NJA105 is an experimental variety from Rutgers. I have asked them if I can share wood. I think it is much better than Ilona taste wise (both sweeter / more flavorful and less mushy / better storage) but it is oval and has a big seam which I expect is why it was not released.

@alan, Florilege you can get from Bob Purvis, that is where I got it. I should probably try Sugar Pearls again, I only fruited it for a short period and removed it. I am getting Canadian White Blenheim this year, it is a solid white apricot. We will see if my tree ever gets productive. Your Alfred sounds like my Hoyt Montrose… small, late, and very reliable.

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I will gladly give you some SP wood in exchange for NJA 105. I will even dubb it the Scott Smith cot if I like it. If they didn’t release it I doubt they patented it- that would be throwing money away. .

I just ate a Robada and it was just over 15 brix and completely delicious. This shows its potential only as there were just a few fruit on the whole tree. It gets excessive water from an extremely leaky gutter above it.

Cornell calls what I have Alfred, but who knows if they didn’t just name it after a beloved colleague and if it wasn’t called Hoyt Montrose by others at the time. They used it primarily as breeding stock but Jim Cummins told me it was the most reliable cot in their entire collection.

Mine is more than 25 years old.

I think they didn’t do anything with it. But I signed a non propagation agreement. Hopefully they will let me share it.

I’m ditching Mormon, Wenatche Moorpark, and Flavor Delight this winter if anyone would like some scions of them. They are super reliable setters, but lack the acid I’m looking for in an apricot.

I have a bit of experience with both Tomcot and Robada, not it New England, but in the central San Joaquin Valley. Your post surprised me here when I read ‘equal brix but neither have what I consider perfect cot texture.’ I thought the sentence would end in flavor to be sure. I do consider both Tomcot and Robada to have fine-textured firm flesh texture, but both lack typical apricot aromatics when harvested at firm ripe. Anyway, I’m very happy that Robada is doing well for you there and hope it continues to do so.
Since you wrote about sauce,- Robada does hold on the tree sufficiently well that you can harvest loads of fully-ripe and ready-to-fall fruit from a mature tree. Cooked on low heat it makes an excellent sauce.

For some reason and for the first time, Sugar Pearls was the only cot not to bear a decent crop of the trees growing against the sunny walls of my home. However, it has once again proven to be much sweeter than the other cots I grow, including Tomcot, Robada and Alfred. It is one of the most delicious fruits I’ve ever eaten.

I must say that the Spring Satin “apriums” I’m harvesting are among the 3 best J plum type fruits I grow and the only pluot with some clear apricot tendencies. If it continues to bear consistently in the next 10 years I will call it an essential variety to grow in the northeast. In the past harvests have been quite small but the fruit is so good I will keep the tree regardless. No other plums are even ripe yet here- it ripens about 2 weeks ahead of the bland Shiro.

It is a meaty Santa Rosa type.

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