Please note that in order to get apples you must have at least two different varieties of apple. For example a Fuji will not pollinate itself, but it will pollinate a Gala and vice versa. If a neighbor (within 1/4 mile) has an apple of a different variety then you will most likely get apples.
Akane – Ripens in mid-August. Often considered the best early red. Vigorous and cold hardy. Akane shows resistance to scab and mildew. Use fresh, does not store well.
Braeburn – Ripens in mid-October. Light red blush or stripe on green. Excellent blend of sweet and tart, very crisp and juicy. Some susceptibility to scab and mildew. Great storage life.
Chehalis – Ripens in late September. Good lively flavor, fine texture but a little soft. Some susceptibility to scab and mildew.
Cox Orange Pippin – Ripens in mid-September. Orange stripes on yellow. Flavor is unique and exceptional with a fine firm texture. Hardy and productive.
Criterion – Ripens mid-October with a sweet aromatic outstanding flavor. A very vigorous type.
Elstar – Ripens early September. Medium apples are fine textured, firm, and sweet. Excellent storage life and some scab resistance.
Enterprise – Ripens early October. Red apples are sweet crisp and juicy. Very resistant to scab.
Freedom – Ripens in early October. Red apples that are sweet and tart. Very good disease resistance.
Fuji – Ripens in mid-October. Red stripe on a green apple. It has an excellent rich flavor. Some scab resistance. Excellent storage life.
Gala – Ripens in mid-September. Red blush or stripes on yellow. Strong sweet flavor and firm, crisp texture.
Golden Delicious (Yellow Delicious) – Ripens late September to mid-October. Very sweet and juicy golden apples are rather soft. Fair storage life.
Granny Smith – Ripens in mid-to-late October. Green apples are large and smooth grained. A unique sweet-tart flavor. Exceptional storage life.
Gravenstein – Ripens in late August to early September. Red striped on yellow apples that are firm, crisp and juicy. Excellent apple for all uses. Fair storage life.
Honeycrisp – Ripens in late September. Large crisp, juicy red apples are heavily produced and ideal for fresh eating. They have an excellent storage life.
King – Ripens in late September and early October. Large red apples are sweet and juicy. A favorite for baking. Fair storage life.
Jonagold – Ripens in October. Red blush on large yellow apples. They have an outstanding sweet flavor. Excellent variety for fresh eating or processing.
Liberty – Ripens in late September. Medium apples are red crisp, firm and sweet. Excellent disease resistance. Produces well on young wood.
Northern Spy – Ripens in mid-to-late October. Red striped apples have excellent flavor and quality. A good coastal variety. Storage life is excellent. Also a great cidering apple.
Pink Lady – Ripens in late September. Medium pink blushed apples are an excellent blend of sweet and tart. Resists browning after slicing and stores well.
Yellow Transparent – Earliest variety of apple in the Northwest ripening in early-August. Yellow apples are crisp finely textured and somewhat tart. Excellent cooking apple. A good fresh apple, does not store well.
Download a complete information sheet on apples, including apple varieties, apple ripening chart, apple pollination chart and apple general reference chart.
Plant apples in full sun in well-drained soil. Dwarf trees should be spaced 12 feet apart and allow 16 feet between rows. Semi-dwarf trees should be planted 15 feet apart with 20 feet between rows. Plant the top of the root mass just at grade with enough soil mounded to cover roots. The graft should be 1 inch above grade. In addition, mulches should be left away from the trunk and graft. Pile mulch in a donut around the trunk, but never touching the trunk.
Apples benefit from a well-balanced fertilizer. Feed them in fall or winter. Apples need some nitrogen but not too much so get a fertilizer with a high middle number (phosphorus) as it promotes flowers and fruit; such as a 4-5-3. If lower grade mulches like bark or sawdust are used be sure to add more nitrogen as they deplete nitrogen as they’re broken down.
Young apple trees should be pruned to encourage an upright shape. As they age, remove the leader and thin inner branches to develop a vase shape. Older trees need removal of center sprouts and older fruiting wood. There are entire books dedicated to the subject of pruning, investing a good one can ensure you have strong vigorous trees that will continue to produce heavily for it’s lifetime.
Disease and Pest Control
Apples often suffer from fungal diseases like scab, and powdery mildew. Timed spraying in winter can help to limit these problems. In addition, proper pruning can increase air flow in and around fruit and therefore reduce the potential of fungal diseases.
Insects such as scale, aphids, apple maggot can reduce yields. Timed sprays generally work best to control their populations. Codling moth is another common pest for apples, the OSU Extension Office puts out a bulletin every year for the best time to put out traps, as their cycle changes annually with the weather.
See a Spray Schedule to best target your efforts.