Mislabled apple scions

I am wondering about everyones experience with mislabeled scions?
What is the rate of mislabeling when purchasing scions from nursery’s?
I bought a bunch of scions from Maple Valley a few years ago and about half of them were mislabeled. What I though was Pitmaston turned out to be Calville Blanc or something similar. What I thought was Ashmead’s Kernel turned out to be Golden Delicious or something similar.
It’s so frustrating to wait 2-4 years only to get the wrong variety.
Any other nurseries to worry about?
I wonder how guys like Derek Mills keep it all organized?

I know this has happened a lot with figs, but I’m not aware of it being a common occurrence for apples.

I just got some scions from Maple Valley Orchards. I hope yours was just a one time issue due to ownership transfer from old to current owners.


I’ve got a few coming from MVO later this month. I hope the same thing…

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I still think Jason at Horne Creek Farm or Ron at Big Horse Creek Farm in North Carolina have the best scions for the price, and a very sizable selection.

Maple Valley I cannot speak to…but the above guys are the best of numerous I’ve tried.


I got a few from Maple Valley some time ago which were all fine. The worst offender was Botner, he had about 10% wrong. But of course he also had way more varieties than anyone else.

Most of my wrong ones I have gotten from personal trades. I’m sure I’ve been on the giving end of that as well given all the scions I have cut and shipped over the years.


I’ve got two scions coming from Big Horse Creek. My concern with their stock is how well it will do up here. Time will tell.

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I have had no problem with scion I purchased from Maple Valley, and I bought from them right at the time of change in ownership. The only one mislabeled was a trade and I’m guessing the party was unaware their graft had failed and they sent me a scion of pear rootstock. I still need to regraft that Nijiseiki / 20th Century.

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Did those scions turn out to be OK for you?

If you haven’t already replaced it, I think I have a limb I could cut of this pear you need.

I have another Nijiseiki grafted to quince, but I’m thinking that was from the same scion source, so that may be a good trade to keep in mind. Thanks BB.

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Some years ago I ordered a whip of Médaille d’Or from Cummins on G11. It didn’t look right, so I hoped it might be Twenty Ounce. Sending samples to Temperate Orchard Conservancy, they gently informed me it was Honeycrisp.
Tearing out the root (too small for my purposes) along with the tree (chlorotic leaves, bitter pit, only fire blight strike seen in 15 years growing apples, attracted earwigs in their hundreds), I got a stick from the local scion swap of Twenty Ounce, grafted that to Gen30 & awaited results.

Clearly not 20 Oz.: This apple is ripe really late, round, burgundy over green/cream, shiny & tastes vaguely of “Delicious”.

Looking over the collection, I’ve decided that tree is growing too near the sewer line from the house - roots likely to get involved, so will take it out.

They were nice scions, but it’ll be a few years before I’ll know if they were accurately labeled or not

I think most mis-labels are just mistakes. But anytime you pass on something that hasn’t fruited or been positively ID’d there is a possibility the mistake is being compounded. It happens.

Some are obvious, a red delicious scion isn’t going to look like a Golden Delicious or something. But, most of the time things like bark, bloom, leaf, can help before it ever fruits to conclude if it’s labeled correctly.

I’m not good at IDing scion variety by appearance. I could probably tell crabapple from apple or apple from pear, but certainly couldnt tell a Spartan from a Macoun

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Agree. Usually a golden or red flesh is going to stand out…but I mentioned scion ID as just one
possible method to noting possible mix-ups before years go by.

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