How I Pick Parent Apples for Breeding New Varieties, My List

Here is a video I put together on Apples that I have used as parents for my breeding project.  I show and discuess a few apples that I am using which were in season at the time, and talk about some others I’ve used.  My approach is not very sophisticated, but I’m trying to keep it fun.  Poring over scientific papers and reading about genetics is not my idea of a good time.  Perhaps my approach will become more sophisticated in the future, but I’m also just curious to see what an average person could do without learning too much new stuff beyond the basics of pollinating, growing seeds and grafting, which are all pretty accessible.  Below is a list of parents I’ve used, though I may have forgotten a couple.  I will probably do more full reviews of some of these in the future.  They were generally chosen for flavor, texture and overall desert quality, flesh color, season and keeping ability.  Those are the main things I think about with flavors and desert quality toping the list.

 

White and yellow fleshed apples:

 

Wickson

Sweet 16

Cherry cox

King David

gold rush

Rubinette

Golden Russet

Lady Williams (parent of cripps pink)

Cripp’s Pink (trademark name Pink Lady)

Granny Smith (probable parent of Lady Williams)

Newtown Pippin

Chestnut Crab

 Beautiful, tasty King David

Beautiful, tasty King David



Red Fleshed Apples:


Etter 7/13 (Grenadine)

Etter 8/11 Rubaiyat

Etter 7/9 (Pink Parfait)

(coop 23) Williams' Pride 

Maypole Crab (dwarf columnar growth habit and intense red flesh that is an odd combination of very edible and barely edible.  I like eating it and am excited about breeding with it.)


This year’s crosses (if I do any.  I have to stop at some point.  Hell, who am I kidding! ;)  This year’s crosses will probably involve William’s pride, Trailman Crab, Centennial crab, Chestnut Crab, William’s Pride, Sweet 16, Katherine, Etter 7/9, Maypole, Red Pippin (fiesta), Golden Russet, Cherry Cox, and Lady Williams, and possibly some other russets.  We need more russets!  St. Edmund’s Pippin is very intriguing.  It is a dyed in the wool russet that ripens in summer.  I just haven’t fruited it enough to be ready to jump in yet.  I will continue to do red fleshed crosses, but also some that aren't.  I'm pretty sure that using just red fleshed crosses is seriously diminishing the percentage of seedlings that will be successful, because of some of the unrefined genes in red fleshed apples.  Also, I'm just intrigued about other lines of dessert apples too.  I should be getting some fruit out of my trials this coming year, so stay tuned for actual results!

For more on apple breeding see the plant breeding pages: