Here are a couple of videos about very late hanging apples, which I'm always excited about. I broke it into two parts, because, in spite of heavy editing, it's still pretty long. More below.
I'm not good at a lot of things, like remembering people, where I met them, their names, their faces, why I should care who they are and what they think, book keeping... But, one thing I am good at is spotting potential. Years ago when I found out that some apples can hang and ripen late into the winter, I was intrigued. This was potential. The potential to have fresh fruit in perfect condition off the tree at a time when most people in temperate climates are eating fruit out of storage and often already of marginal quality. Imagine a tree that is grafted to many different late varieties ripening through December and January and maybe beyond? That is an awesome idea- which is why I'm doing it! I have a new frankentree started just for very late ripening apples. But, I only know some of what I'll be grafting onto it, and a lot of work has gone into getting this far.
First I started collecting as many very late ripening, late hanging apples as I could find. I spent hours upon hours researching apples to find more of them. Some have fruited and some haven't yet. Now, years later, all that labor is starting to pay off, and not just for me, for you too and anyone else that will listen to me. Here are about 15 different apples that are still hanging on the tree just around the Winter Solstice/Christmas. Some would have been better for sure in early Dec. or even back in late Nov., but some are excellent and a couple are not ripe yet. There is something of a gap between the very latest, Lady Williams, and the ones at their best now, but I'm sure that gap can be filled with apples that are in existence somewhere now, let alone with what could still be bred in the future using the late apple genes that are out there.
Speaking of which, after making this video, I'm even more fired up about breeding for this type of apple. I would guess that the season can be extended even further past Lady Williams coming in at about Feb 1st. I have seen wildling apples here hang until March and still be in good condition, but there was not much else to recommend them unfortunately. I hope to start getting some fruit this year from late variety crosses I made four years ago, like Grenadine x Lady Williams and Grenadine x Gold Rush.
Let me tell you, as soon as I finish this post, I'm going to mosey on out to Frankentree and bite into one of those amazing, crisp, perfect apples that yesterday was covered in snow and last night kissed by a 25 degree freeze, and I'm going to be stoked. I'm sure you'll hear more from me on this topic in the future, but for now, this is a pretty good start.
I'd like to continue work along these lines, collecting, breeding and sharing information. You can easily support me in this and the other development and educational work at no cost to you simply by using my amazon links. If you bookmark this link and use it every time you shop at amazon and I'll make a small commission for sending you there. Thanks for your support. I'm not sure what else to do with myself! I'm already planning more late apple variety breeding crosses to make this spring...