I have been placing some fruit trees in ground and I have several spots left. Since I am in Virginia I was given some great advice on the forum that I should be very concerned about Fireblight. I have been reading some posts and it appears that Gala may be greatly impacted by FB. There appears to some thought that moonglow is not a good pear and that Liberty may have some disease resistance but it is a bug magnet. Should I consider growing any of these. Appreciate your advice. Thanks.
I will confirm that Liberty is a codling moth magnet! But it has been very successful for me in terms of disease and productivity, and I love the apple for eating and cooking.
But I live in arid Montana and you live in Viriginia, so things would be different for you. Still, if it handles heat and humidity and you can deal with the bugs and it still tastes good it might be a go for you.
I had been told that Moonglow was a boring pear, but I grafted a few twigs of it onto my big multi-graft pear tree anyway, and I like the pears. They are mild, but still have the quintessential pear taste. If you want an exotic taste, Moonglow’s not your pear, but if you think a decent pear that’s easy to grow is a good thing (as I do) then go for it!
I’ve been very dissapointed in Moonglow and will be grafting it over to something else this winter. In 5 years I’ve gotten 1 good pear. Everything else rots.
Thanks. Easy to grow is a plus.
Thanks for giving me your thoughts. I was hoping that Moonglow would be a replacement for Bartlett which I understand gets FB here and would require constant spraying.
Gala is definitely a FB magnet and I would avoid it. Moonglow has been
a BIG bust for me and I’ve top grafted mine over to Harrow Sweet, which
has also been a disappointment. If you want a bullet proof excellent pear,
I’d recommend Maxine, which is the best pear I grow.
To me, Gala is very plain and very boring in taste. I’m in the process of top working my tree to eliminate the vast majority of Gala branches. I don’t know how the others taste, but I’d take Gala off the list based on flavor alone.
A real “Why bother” apple for me.
Yep! It’s an “I wish I knew now what I didn’t know then” apple
If I where you, I would buy discounted 3 year old trees from Homedepot etc with the intent of grafting over them. Then all you have to worry about is picking the tree with the most number of existing/well spaced branches. The best time to get those trees was aug/sept but I have seen some recently at my local HD’s. Gala is the only tree I know to avoid due to its naturally week wood.
Here Gala ripens in late Aug. and Liberty in mid to late Sept. So it sort of depends on when you want fruit. Gala doesn’t keep as well as Liberty either.
I did not have many, if any, Liberty with codling moth damage this year. I follow Scott’s spray guide but did throw in a single spray of synthetic pesticide in early July mostly for Japanese beetles.
Liberty is mid season apple so there are lots of choices for you there. If modern, disease resistant varieties are what you are looking for then I would recommend Crimson Crisp (Coop-39). If I had known about Crimson Crisp when I planted my trees I would have subbed Liberty for Crimson Crisp.
Thanks…I will look into Maxine. I appreciate the advice.
Ok. Gala is off the list. I appreciate your help.
Thanks… I think you are right it is a little late to get the discounted big box trees.
Thanks I will look at the Crimson Crisp. I really appreciate everyone’s advice and experience. I really enjoy reading the postings and the help I have received here.
Even though I also topworked my Gala I have to stand up for it … its one of the better modern apples, very aromatic. The grocery store version is horrible, but the home-grown version is a perfectly fine apple. I took it out because I like its parent, Kidd’s Orange Red, better, but if not for KOR I probably would have kept it. It really likes the mid-Atlantic as well, besides the fireblight issue (which I never found too bad).
Some apples I like a lot to consider include Suncrisp, Hoople’s Antique Gold, Reine des Reinettes, GoldRush, and Blenheim Orange. All have done very well for me in Maryland.
Ayers is a very good pear to consider. I think others would say Harrow Sweet is great too also Harvest Queen if you can find one.
Scott - how big did your Galas get? All of mine are the size of an orange or smaller. I thin pretty well, but maybe I need to do more (?) or are they just a small apple?