Russet apples for PNW

What experience or wisdom do you growers have with russet apples in the PNW. I am in Portland Oregon. I am curious about adding a russet tree with a variety like ashmeads kernel, egremont russet, golden russet, boskoop, karmijn, hudson golden gem, Roxbury russet, knobbed russet, etc. Anyone have experience with any of those varieties in the PNW?

I hear ashmeads is really good, but it can be finicky to set fruit. Is it really worth the effort?

I know hudson golden gem was found in oregon just south of me, so it may be a nice choice.

I’m looking for a backyard tree setting for my family and to share with neighbors.

I do have pollinator trees such as honey crisp, gold rush and golden delicious, as well as a tasty crabapple.

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Chris Homanics of Queener Farm may be able to offer you some valuable info. He’s in Scio, OR. He posts often in the NAFEX group on Facebook.

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Hopefully others here will chime in, but you may find this site worth perusing - they’re located in the Vancouver area. (Scroll down for links to info on the varieties they grow.)

https://www.saltspringapplecompany.com/orchard/#our-varieties

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I have grown Hudson’s Golden Gem, golden russet and ashmeads kernel.
All are excellent but the first two are extraordinary.

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I grow Karmijn and Ashmead’s. It is hard to recommend without knowing what flavors you desire. Karmijn is my favorite apple of all. It has decent disease resistance and has nice vigor, being a triploid. Have you tasted all of these?

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Thanks @Quill. I have had karmijn before from an orchard in Salem. It was very good after mellowing for a month. Still very sharp and flavorful but smoother. I love the way they look with the russet and red.

Is ashmeads similar to karmijn in flavor and texture?

Tastes vary. Golden Russet is a fine apple. But Ashmeads is extraordinary, to my palate. I go to the u-pick place and get as many Ashmeads as I can, then fill the rest of the bag with Golden Russet and Caville Blanc.

And maybe they were overripe or something, but I picked some Hudson’s golden gem this fall and just tossed the last of them to make room for vegetables in the fridge.

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I’ve read (possibly here?) that Hudson’s Golden Gem doesn’t do as well in the Northeast as it does in the Northwest. The reviews on Orange Pippin cast some doubt on that, though (both positive, both from MA).

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Some similarities between them - both are loaded with flavor. Ashmead’s is more of the classic russet. It is slightly dense and also loaded with flavor. Karmijn has some russet but not 100%. I have both in containers. I have gotten about two good crops in ten years with AK. Karmijn is easier to please, is juicier and larger. It kicks it in a pie too. You can always graft the other variety on. ; )

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Thanks @quill for the extra info. I have decided to go with ashmeads and egremont russet to be grafted on my three year old golden delicious. So there should be good pollination for the ashmeads. I know golden delicious can have some issues on the west side but maybe I can get some flowers out of it at least.

I went with egremont and ashmeads as they are both similar in growth habit, fruit size, fruit color, and ripening times. My other top choices were belle de boskoop and karmijn. Both of which are larger fruit, triploid, and more vigorous trees.

I have a local orchard that has karmijn available so I can my fix of them. They are great! So much flavor. So tart but get way more mellow after a month. And I love the half russet of karmijn also. It is a very pretty apple. If my honey crisp has issues then I will switch it over to karmijn or belle de boskoop possibly.

I have a semi dwarf gold rush that I will use as my workhorse apple. So any ashmeads or egremont will be icing on the cake.

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