Experience with Red Fleshed Apples


Jeremymillrood: I believe the genetics from Malus niedzwetzkyana found in red-fleshed apples, in most cases, makes them very hardy. The two with which I have most experience and knowledge, Winekist and Redfield, are both rated to zone 2. The others’, (and maybe even these,) need for chill hours may vary depending on what genetics dominate in a given set from the crossing parent.

Far fewer notes are made regarding the need for chill hours than for zone hardiness. I seem to recall - others may be able to verify or refute this - Airlie Red Flesh/HIdden Rose is fairly low chill, but its sensitivity to fire blight and rots probably negate its potential in Florida.

You might ask Tom Burford if he knows of any red-flesh apples worth a try in your state.


Thanks @NuttingBumpus, with our humid climate, the fire blight and rot are certainly a factor…Is Tom a member of the site?? Maybe I can see about getting some scion wood to try out next year.


I am not Tom Burford’s spokesman, but I doubt he messes with forums such as this. If you look him up, you’ll find he is one of several grand ol’ apple experts. I believe he is around 90 years old and I pray he remains in good health. For years (decades?) he has headed apple tastings at Monticello. Tom is a native Virginian.
Thinking back to his book, “Apples of North America,” I recall frequent comments of apples doing well in the Northern Tier states or Way Out West (Washington! where I live!) languishing in his orchard in Virginia. He noted the exceptions; a good read.

Writing this brings to mind someone with whom I’ve corresponded at length in the past who lives near Sumrall, Miss. He’s been in NAFEX. I’ll give him a heads-up about this forum and your interest in trying a red-fleshed apple. He may already know.


Further thought on your topic brings to mind many red fleshed apples have a short window of ripeness and keeping. It’s a long shot, but you may find the one (three?) that can live in the Deep South and produce.
I imagine you will need to find methods to force dormancy.


Has arborose fruited yet? Curious how red it really is


Do Geneva and Red Devil ripen at the same time? I already have Red Devil, and I know you like Geneva, but if it isn’t in your top 5 red/pink flesh choices I might pass. Putting in a Geneva requires taking something else out.


One more question. I love Pink Pearl, how does Hidden Rose compare to it? Season, flavor? Is it worth keeping both?


I was under the impression that Hidden Rose is a trademarked name for Airlie Red Flesh, also sold under the name Mountain Rose by the Kiyokawa family that farm outside Hood River, OR.

Are there two Hidden Roses?


I’m referring to Airlie’s Red Flesh, I just like the name Hidden Rose better lol not sure if Mountain Rose is a carbon copy.

I’m just interested in how Pink pearl compares and if it’s worth keep both varieties if space is slim. Flavor/ripening time.


I have both Pink Pearl and Hidden Rose, but have only tasted PP. just based on its own merits, PP is a very good apple. It’s wonderfully tart with enough sweetness to be pleasant eating out-of-hand. It also has good texture with a crisp, dense flesh. Someone once described it as similar in taste to a sour patchkid, and I think that’s not so far off. Hopefully next year I’ll be able to compare it to Hidden Rose.


Since I am waiting to sell my house, I gave it away. :cry:


We have both. They ripen in different seasons. Pink Pearl is ripe here right after Gravensteins in August, while the Hidden Rose isn’t ready until October. The HR is harder, a bit sweeter, and less intense flavor and color, but both are good apples.


My ARF fruited for the first time this year. A plain, pale yellow apple, conic shaped with a bright pink interior. A sweet/tart mix definitely towards the sweet side but a very pleasant, refreshing, apple. Nice crunch, a ‘light’ eat, no real complexity, a good apple to pull off the tree and enjoy without working on tasting it. I plan on grafting it to a large Tenroy gala that’s getting top worked next spring. I liked it a lot.


Because of you I have ARF chip-budded to a couple Gen30. (Too soon to know if any callused properly.) Your description makes me think it would be interesting to compare it to Bardsey. It, too, is a 'light eat" but definitely worth hanging onto. My guess is that Bardsey would have a lot more tartness where daily temperature swings are less than out here in the DRY. If you ever get your hands on Bardsey (I could send you some) you could someday see how they compare, also.


Baker’s Delicious was delicious . Well worth space in the orchard!


Jim Rider in Watsonville, California, apparently has California’s biggest apple breeding program and is working on red fleshed apples. (CRFG had a tour of it recently which, alas, I had to miss.) The blurb for the tour said people should prepare to have their minds blown, and I guess he’s close to marketing the cultivars, so stay tuned!


My Mott Pink was very, very, good as usual. I gave my fancy Arborose away, and Scarlett Surprise will bloom again this spring if I am here. It had a small turn out of blossoms last spring but no fruit.


Hey, can you comment a bit more on the flavor of this apple? Have you tried any other pink/red fleshed cultivars you can compare it to? Debating on adding it. I really love Winekist and Pink Pearl.


Alcedo passed away last Dec.


Keep us posted!