Tell me about Rubinette apples

I read this is supposedly “the best tasting apple in the world”. I’d like to give it a try, I saw one of Scott’s reviews saying it grows very well in this area.

Raintree has it, but only on M 26, which is a little bigger than I prefer, I’m trying to stick with Bud 9 or M9.

So that’s my next question, how vigorous of a tree is this?

How disease-prone?

Most literature describes this as a “small” apple. How small?

trees of antiquity has them on mm111 if you’re interested

would love to know the answer to this question aswell

but have already bought one so im in for the ride

1 Like

In my experience here in a dry climate there is no practical difference in the size of M26 and M9. YMMV

Well my 2nd year in the ground rubinette from trees of antiquity on m111 gave me 2 apples this year. So that’s all the experience I have, but they were so good I ate them basically to the seeds. Hard to make any sure recommendations on this young of a tree, but usually trees get better with a little age. So based on that limited experience, they were awesome apples

1 Like

I have seriously considered getting this variety since I started on my fruit growing trek last year. I had also heard about how great it is, but it also has some significant disease issues. Some on here, including @scottfsmith, I think has grown it without too many problems. I eventually picked other varieties, but might try it later as a grafting experiment, not a whole tree.

Cummins nursery has them in their stock right now, on a dwarf rootstock, B9. I’ve bought many trees from them the last couple years and have been pretty much pleased with them.

Here, I’ve seen seedling apples get to 55’ tall…

1 Like

We look to have a few decent looking Rubinettes in time, and then I’ll know more about taste. As to size they do appear to be a little on the small size, perhaps a little bigger than what you might call “lunch box”. My Karmijn Da Sonnaville right next to them are larger, they’re no bigger than a typical Liberty, if that, and they’re quite a bit smaller than my Jonagolds on the same tree.

The Rubinettes that I have tasted several times at a local annual apple festival were well above average for texture and flavor among the dozens of sample cultivars. The size has varied from year to year but they are not remarkably small. The source of these apples is Eastern Washington.

The deer ate my first crop this year. Multi-budded a branch on my Ginger Gold/ B.9.

Mine were very good this year. I brought some to a neighborhood party and they got the most wows. They are one of the highest brix and are pretty sour as well. The people that don’t like them find them too sour.

They are small if I don’t thin enough … guilty of that in some years…


Rubinette is very good here as well. They’re small-ish in normal years, never exceeding medium-sized. Taste and texture are both top-notch.

This year has been bad for apples in my area, with an unusually wet, warm spring. I normally don’t see scab here at all, but this year it affected several trees, and the Rubinette (on G11/MM111 interstem stock) was the hardest-hit. The apples were very small this season, too. Still delicious, though.

1 Like

I don’t care about the size of apples, for me it’s all about the taste. My honey crisp were quite large, but I would take the few rubinette I had over them any day. I will admit the big apples do look good hanging in the tree though


These were my first 2 Rubinette apples from the tree I planted in 2015 on G.30 from Cummins. Sour patch kids best describe the flavor. Probably my second favorite this year, behind Honeycrisp and barely ahead of Ashmead’s Kernel. The size was just right to me, on the small to medium side. Texture was just right. My tree has not been very vigorous at all, but I suspect it partly due to a less-than-perfect location. So far, no disease problems for me, and I try to be mostly organic (Surround), although I do use 2 sprays of Immunox.


Very unique looking. I had considered this variety when I planned my little orchard. But, passed on it because of it supposed disease issues. But you said yours doesn’t have any. How have you other apples fared in that dept?

Interesting that you were able to get fruit off it after two years. I have three G30 trees, one planted last year, a Rox Russet, has been my best bare root grower- nicely shaped, big scaffolds and height. The other two were a Suncrisp and Zestar, planted in April. The SC has done very well, and the Z pretty good.

Have you had any more of your two year old apples produce? Thanks.

1 Like

I have found Rubinette about average for rots, and its also OK for the other diseases. I had a worse scab year than usual this year but Rubinette did OK. It did get sprayed for it. It is somewhat biennial and is prone to over-setting.

I am now eating the last of the ones I stored this fall, they are just barely over-ripe; they become much more mellow after aging in the fridge, its nothing like the sour patch apples you can get off the tree.


From what I’ve gathered from your various posts about your apples, it seems like rot is quite an issue in your location? Is it just because of the sweltering humidity? I know not all of your apples have that problem.

Is the rot issue being that the fruit starts to turn mushy while on the tree? Is this remedied any by spraying, and if so, what do you use? Are apples the worst, or are things like peaches and other stone fruit the worst?

My trees aren’t producing yet, they’re just been in the ground for two years max, but I wonder if that’s something I’ll have to concerned about. Our summers can be quite humid/rainy, but not excessively hot, although this year was pretty oppressive.

It could be that I have a relatively young orchard, but I haven’t had much disease pressure (yet). I had what I believe to be fire blight on my Ashmead’s Kernel on B.9 last year, so I whacked the top off of it over the lesion to create an open center. Note that I didn’t do the “tree surgery” to completely remove it, and it showed no signs of blight this year. The lesion is almost completely healed now.
I planted Kidd’s Orange Red and Crimson Topaz, both on G.11, at the same time as Rubinette. They produced their first apples this year. Wasn’t crazy about KOR, but I may have picked it at the wrong time. Their texture seemed kinda mealy, a big turn off. They also got hammered by plum curc.
Crimson Topaz was my fourth favorite this year (still waiting for my Goldrush to ripen). A very tart apple, with a beautiful red skin and large size. Crunchy like Honeycrisp, with lots of juice. Not as sweet as Rubinette, but I liked them and ate all 15 apples the tree gave me.

1 Like

Its definitely an issue for me. I don’t do summer sprays, I stop about when summer starts (late June). If I was spraying all summer with biweekly cover sprays I wouldn’t have any rot problems, but thats too much work for me. I have just been selecting out the bad rotters and there are still plenty of great apples left. Today I was harvesting a few Yates apples, and I saw zero rot on them. So, I don’t think there is a need to do summer sprays on apples unless you want to grow the rot-susceptible varieties.

My summers are probably not that different from yours, maybe its a little hotter and more humid here. Note that you won’t get much rot for several years, it takes something like five years for it to settle in to a new orchard. Its much worse on other fruits, even the pears rot more than the apples. All stone fruits are highly rot prone for me. On apples there are various kinds of rots, I usually get the circular spots which are brown and mushy, I have heard this is the same disease as the brown rot on stone fruits.


Ugh, sure not looking forward to that, I’m betting I’ll be working more on the trees than when I planted them- pruning, mulching more, spraying, etc. You mention rot-susceptible apples, which ones I have would be considered in that category? They’re in my profile. I know Rox Russet is bad, because the last two years we got some from an orchard they were bad. I have a mix of older and newer disease-resistant varieties. Gold Russet, Macoun, and Grimes Golden might be too, but I’m guessing.

So is the rot a fungal disease? If so, would a copper spray like Bonide makes work?

1 Like

I wanted to share this photo of my first Rubinette. This was picked last fall, on Sept. 24, 2019. I shared it with my girlfriend. I thought it was delicious, and she agreed. It had the bite and texture of a good Gala coupled with the yummy twang of an aged Goldrush. The bearing stick came several years ago from the generous and gracious @scottfsmith, and has been multi-budded on a Ginger Gold tree on B.9 roots. The tree ripened for me here in Pennsylvania after surviving multiple transplants.