Apples in the Garden (part 2 of 2)

Apples in the Garden (part 2 of 2)

So then it comes to the fun part, choosing the variety. I always advise that you steer clear of most of the apples commonly sold in shops – grow something different. In addition, apples are grown all over the world and some do not do well in our climate. ‘Braeburn’ and ‘Granny Smith’ need more sun that we have and we can’t grow ‘Pink Lady’ (‘Cripp’s Pink). ‘Cox’s’ is not great either because it is prone to disease.

It is impossible to select just a few but I would always recommend ‘Falstaff’ because it is easy and very productive. It is perfect for organic growers. Although it could be argued that the flavour is not ‘complex’ it is a sweet, crisp apple that is juicy and not hard and tastes lovely. I also rate ‘Jonagold’ highly and it grows well here. These mature in September/October but why not grow an early eater like ‘Discovery’ bearing in mind that early apples rarely store for more than a few weeks.

If you are after really healthy apples, try one of the new red-fleshed apples such as ‘Redlove’ which are packed with antioxidants – though their flavour leads me to use them cooked rather than for eating raw. And don’t forget that Ireland has a wonderful heritage of apples and these are increasingly available as trees to grow. Why not grow ‘Irish Peach’, the superb ‘Ross Nonpareil’ from Meath or ‘Keegans Crab’ from Armagh and keep history alive in your garden.

Post written by our resident gardening guru Geoff Stebbings from www.thebikinggardener.com

Apples in the Garden (part 1 of 2)

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