Candy Crab

Is anyone growing Candy crab apple from Blue Hill Wildlife Nursery? I’m wondering if anyone has been able to taste it and can talk about flavor, disease resistance, etc.



Had not heard of those folks until doing a search recently. Sounds like some nice apples they have (for deer and other animals, but seem good for people use too).
Have they been in business for long?

Bluehill has been around for at least a few years…I want to say 4-5


Cant say enough good about Ryan, the owner. He puts out amazing trees, usually on Dolgo rootstock. Everything he grows is no-spray in PA for wildlife. I grow for eating, but im highly interested in apples that thrive without human effort. This crab, as you can read on his site, he says is phenomenal for fresh eating. I purchased 9 trees from him this fall, coming in the Spring, and this is one of them. I am going to graft it on M111 as well to get a crop sooner than the 8-10 years standard dolgo will take.


I very seldom get fruit from M111 under 7 years.

I eyeballed the Blue Hill collection…but I have too many (and more coming) already!
Pears and apples that hang into freezing cold conditions I could use more of though.

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Early bearing varieties like Goldrush, Ark Black and Pink Lady can bear fruit on 111 by the second year starting with a whip in my soil and climate in S. NY. It frequently happens in my nursery if I don’t remove the fruit early. It depends as much on the variety as rootstock as you know. Even for typical varieties, by year 7 they should not only be bearing, but in full production if you are using growing methods to accelerate establishment and production. A lot depends on how you care for the trees and the conditions where they are being grown. My soil encourages rapid establishment but I’m a dry farmer who depends on rain- things accelerate if I irrigate. An early Pink Lady I grew on 111 got its first significant crop on its second season, which was a record for me. I did everything for it because I was anxious to see how the variety (Barnsby strain) would do in my climate. Mostly it was about water and N, keeping away any competition, and the precocity of the variety. .

Begining using second year feathered trees on M111 I have had one crab produce the year planted.
But, several have taken 7 years from planting a maiden or a feathered tree. (That’s be 7 to 9 years from the graft to a bare root rootstock). I’d say 6 years or 7 years is average first fruit from a maiden bare root tree using M111 rootstock.

Certainly 3 year old conntainerized trees can get that much quicker.

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I came across Blue Hill 2 weeks ago but most everything was out of stock. I spent more money on welded wire fence rings to put around my newly planted apples than I did on the trees. Maybe I should plant a “deer orchard” to keep them away from my eating apples.

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Deer would just maul/rub/destroy the “deer” trees and then destroy the human eating ones.


I see you ‘earned’ your pseudonym honestly. :wink: