Find a local pick your own farm here!

Are you trying to choose the right variety of apple for your needs? There are many to choose from. There are heirloom varieties that have been around for hundreds of years and apple growers are constantly creating new varieties to meet consumer tastes and 2021 is no exception. Scroll down this page for a table of dozens of apple varieties includingphotos and their characteristics and best uses. This page has tips about harvesting and storing apples. And if you bring home some apples and want to make applesauce, apple butter,apple juice, apple pie, apple cobbler, apple crisp, even apple cider, just click the links for each to follow directions and recipes or see this page see this page for a master list of simple, reliable, illustrated canning, freezing or preserving directions. There are plenty of other related resources, such as this list of local regional and apple festivals - click on the resources dropdown above.

If you have questions or feedback, please let me know!

What's in season in September 2021, and other timely information:

Notes for September 2021: Autumn is upon us and that means you'd better hurry to get blueberries and peaches; apples are already in full swing. Some crops continue until frost, like raspberries, blackberries, figs, corn and tomatoes. Check your area's crop calendar (see this page) and call your local farms for seasonal specific updates.

See these pages to find a local Apple festival, and other festivals. We have a guide to apple varieties and a guide to peach varieties. Also recipes, canning and freezing directions for apples, blueberries, peaches, tomatoes, corn etc.

See our comprehensive list of easy home canning, jam and jelly making, preserving, drying and freezing directions. You can access recipes and other resources from the drop down menus at the top of the page or the site search. If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to write me! It is easy to make your own ice cream, even gelato, or low fat or low sugar ice cream - see this page. Also note, there are many copycat website listing U-pick farms now.  They have all copied their information from here and usually do not ever update.  Since 2002, I've been updating the information every day but Christmas; so if you see anything wrong or outdated, please write me!

Apple varieties Alphabetical Chart - which apple to pick and why!

Apples are ripening a bit early this year. There have been few late frosts in the main apple growing regions, rain and temperatures have been good, so the year is shaping up well for a good apple crop. It's too early for prices, but I expect most areas to see $14 to $30 a bushel, depending on variety! Scroll down the page to see the chart, or click here for a PDF print version. And for an explanation of why apple slices turn brown and how to stop it, see this page! To see how to properly store apples for the winter, see this page!

Varieties which are exceptional for a trait are noted in the chart below (Best, very good, etc.). Varieties which are at least good and well-suited have an "X" in a column. A blank box simply means that they are average for the quality. Ultimately, it is personal preference and cultural traditions. that often determines which varieties of apples are used for which purpose. That said, sweeter and softer apples make the best applesauce (like Gala), harder, drier apples are often used for baking and storing (like Rome and Arkansas Black), and tarter, more crisp and juicier apples are often eaten fresh (like Honeycrisp).

The U.S. Apple Organization tells us the most popular (by sales) fresh apple varieties are, in order:

  1. Gala
  2. Red Delicious
  3. Fuji
  4. Granny Smith
  5. Honeycrisp
  6. Golden Delicious
  7. McIntosh
  8. Pink Lady
  9. Braeburn
  10. Ambrosia

Honeycrisp and Pink Lady continue to move up the chart, and Red Delicious is moving down. More heirloom varieties are being grown as sp[ecialty crops, and of course, every year sees some new varieties, most notably, those that resist browning when cut, like Ginger Gold and SnowSweet.

Apple Varieties Guide - Which Apple to Pick and Why!

If you would like to print a clean PDF version of this table, click here.

Summary Table (click here for the detailed guide)

(Sorted alphabetically on variety name; see this page for a sort by typical ripening date)

Blank means OK or average. Note: all apples should be stored in the fridge; those noted below as needing refrigeration are exceptionally quick to spoil in not refrigerated.

Name

Typical Ripening Date
Dates are approximate and vary CONSIDERABLY
with weather, location and more!

Eating fresh

Cooking

Apple Sauce

Apple Pie

Apple Juice

Apple
Butter

Notes and Storage Tips

http://www.andersonorchards.com/images/apples/akane_small.jpgAkane

August

X

ambrosia appleAmbrosia

mid to late
September

X

X

good

X

X

X

Should Refrigerate. Does not brown when sliced (see this page for more info)

Arkansas Black appleArkansas Black

mid to late
October

Baking

too hard

Great keeper

Ashmead Kernal appleAshmead Kernal

late September into October

X

X

Autumn crispAutumn crisp October

X

X

good

X

X

X

Cross of Golden Delicious and Monroe. Flesh resists browning

Baldwin

late mid-season

X

X

X

Bevan's favoriteBevan's Favorite

early July X

Black Twig appleBlack Twig

mid to late
October

X

X

X

X

X

X

Blondee appleBlondee October

X

X

Very
good

X

X

X

Yellow skin with slight russeting at the stem and scattered tan-colored pores. It has a unique sweet-tart flavor, with a crisp & juicy white flesh. Excellent for eating fresh and for cooking in your favorite recipe

Blushing Golden appleBlushing Golden

early to
Mid October

X

X

X

X

X

Braeburn appleBraeburn

early to
Mid October

X

X

X

X

Good all-purpose apple

Cameo appleCameo

early to
Mid October

Very
good

X

Very
good

X

X

Excellent flavor, Does not brown when sliced (see this page for more info)

Candy CrispCandyCrisp Early October

X

X

good

X

X

X

cortland_appleCortland

mid to late
September

X

X

X

X

X

Does not brown when sliced (see this page for more info)

Cosmic crisp appleCosmic Crisp mid to late
September

X

X

Excellent

X

X

X

Cosmic Crisp is a cross between Honeycrisp and Enterprise apples, Storage is very good,

High in both sugar and acidity, making it as good overall or better than Red Delicious, Gala and Fuji

Cox's Orange Pippin Cox's Orange Pippin

early season (August)

X

X

good

Crimson Crisp appleCrimson Crisp

mid to Late Season (September)

Crispin apple, also called MutsuCrispin (aka, /Mutsu)

Mid - late season

Very
good

X

good, but watery

X

BEST

X

Earligold appleEarligold

August

X

X

X

X

Must Refrigerate

Empire

mid-August through September

X

X

X

X

A McIntosh type apple with a long shelf life. Aromatic and crisp with creamy white juicy flesh, sweet and tart. Does not brown when sliced (see this page for more info)

Enterprise appleEnterprise

early to
Mid October

X

X

Evercrisp appleEvercrisp Mid October through November

Very
good

X

Very
Good

X

BEST

X

Excellent storage due to it's parents (Fuji and Honeycrisp)

fuji_appleFuji

mid to late
October

Very
good

X

BEST

X

X

Excellent all purpose apple, with sweet aromatic flavor, Great keeper; stores well in garage or basement

Gala appleGala

mid August to
early September

Very
good

X

BEST

X

X

X

Very sweet, excellent flavor, Must refrigerate; even then only keeps for a few weeks. Does not brown when sliced (see this page for more info)

Ginger Gold appleGinger Gold

August

Very
good

X

Very
good

X

X

Does not brown when sliced (see this page for more info)

golden_delicious_appleGolden Delicious

mid to late
September

X

X

Very
good

X

X

X

Very sweet, mild flavor, Should Refrigerate

golden_delicious_appleGoldrush

mid to late
September

X

X

Very
good

X

X

X

Tart, strong aroma flavor, should Refrigerate. Does not brown when sliced (see this page for more info)

grannysmith_appleGranny Smith

mid to late
October

X

X

X

Very tart almost sour apple

Gravenstein appleGravenstein August

X

X

Very
good

X

X

X

Should Refrigerate

Grimes Golden appleGrimes Golden August X X X

Hokuto appleHokuto

late mid-season (late September)

Very
good

X

BEST

X

X

Excellent all purpose apple, with sweet aromatic flavor, good keeper;

Honeycrisp appleHoneycrisp

September

Very
good

X

good, but watery

X

BEST

X

Sweet, crisp apple. Storage is good, not great

Idared appleIdared October

X

X

X

Jazz appleJazz

early to
Mid October

X

X

Very
good

X

X

X

Newer variety, sweet, juicy

Jersey Mac appleJersey Mac

August

X

X

OK

Jonagold_appleJonagold

mid to late
September

X

Very
good

X

OK storage, great all purpose apple.

JonaliciousJonalicious

mid to late
September

X

X

Very
good

X

X

X

Must Refrigerate, very sweet.

Jonamac apple Jonamac

mid to late
September

X

Very
good

X

OK

Jonathon_appleJonathan

mid to late
September

X

X

Very
good

X

X

X

OK

Jubilee

mid September
to early October

X

X

X

X

Stores well - it is an earlier version of Fuji

keepsake appleKeepsake

Late September to
early October

X

X

X

Liberty appleLiberty

mid to late
October

X

X

Lodi appleLodi

Mid July

X

GOOD

Must Refrigerate

Macoun appleMacoun

mid to late
October

X

X

McIntosh appleMcIntosh

September

X

good

X

X

melrose_appleMelrose

early to
Mid October

X

X

Very
good

X

X

X

Mollies_delicious appleMollies Delicious


August

X

Must Refrigerate

Mutsu, also called Crispin

Late September to
early October

X

X

Very
good

X

X

Northern Spy appleNorthern Spy

Late September to
early October

X

X

Very good for storing

grannysmith_appleOpal

mid to late
October

X

X

X

Does not brown when sliced (see this page for more info)

Pau;a Red applePaulaRed

mid August to
early September

X

X

X

X

X

Pink Lady applePink Lady

mid to late
October

X

X

good

X

X

X

Pristine applePristine early July

X

X

good

Very sweet, juicy, does not store well, bruises easily (like Gala)

red_delicious_appleRed Delicious

mid to late
September

X

good

X

RedfreeRedfree Late-July

X

X

Firm flesh and can be held in storage up to 2 months without loss of quality or firmness.

Rome appleRome

early to
Mid October

X

X

RubyFrost appleRubyFrost

Late season, ripens later in the fall

X

Sansa appleSansa

X

Not a great keeper

ShizukaShizuka

Late September to
early October

X

X

X

X

X

X

Does not brown when sliced (see this page for more info)

Snowsweet appleSnowsweet Late September, 2 weeks after HoneyCrisp

X

X

X

X

X

Good storer. Does not brown when sliced (see this page for more info)

StaymanStayman

Early September

X

Stayman Winesap appleStayman Winesap

mid to late
October

X

X

good

X

Strawberry appleStrawberry Early September

X

X

X

X

X

X

OK
summer banana appleSummer banana mid-August

X

X

heirloom, when fully ripe has the faint smell of bananas

Suncrisp

mid to late
October

X

X

X

X

X

Sundance appleSundance

early to
Mid October

X

X

X

X

SweeTango appleSweeTango

mid August to
early September

X

X

X

X

Ultra GoldUltra Gold

mid to late
September

X

X

X

X

X

X

Virginia Gold appleVirginia Gold Late-September

X

X

Also good for apple cider
Wild crisp appleWild Crisp October

Very
good

X

good, but watery

X

BEST

X

 Cross between Honeycrisp and Cripps Pink (AKA Pink Lady)Juicy, sweet, crisp, great for fresh eating or all-purpose, applesauce or in a fruit salad
\William's Pride appleWilliam's Pride Early-July

X

X

Winesap appleWinesap

late-season

X

All-purpose apple

Yates appleYates

mid to late
October

X

X

X

X

Stores very well

York appleYork

X

X

Zestar appleZestar mid-July to mid-August

X

X

X

X

X

X

Should Refrigerate

Click here for detailed descriptions of each apple variety with detailed characteristics

Of course, each region of the country and each season varies. Variations in rainfall and temperature greatly affect the usual ripening date. So call ahead!

English Apple Varieties

These links take you to photos on GardenAction.co.uk

More about apple varieties can be found:

University of Illinois Apple page

More Apple Varieties

Apple photos and brief descriptions

Credits:

photos:
Jonamac, Macoun, PaulaRed: Courtesy of New York Apple Association, © New York Apple Association

And if you are looking for shipping containers for apples and other fruit, see this page.


Home Canning Kits

This is the same type of standard canner that my grandmother used to make everything from applesauce to jams and jellies to tomato and spaghetti sauce. This complete kit includes everything you need and lasts for years: the canner, jar rack, jar grabber tongs, lid lifting wand, a plastic funnel, labels, bubble freer, and the bible of canning, the Ball Blue Book. It's much cheaper than buying the items separately. You'll never need anything else except jars & lids (and the jars are reusable)! There is also a simple kit with just the canner and rack, and a pressure canner, if you want to do vegetables (other than tomatoes). To see more canners, of different styles, makes and prices, click here!

Get canning lids on Amazon here, fast and inexpensive, and BPA-free Mrs. Wages salsa canning mix

Lids, Rings, Jars, mixes, pectin, etc.

Need lids, rings and replacement jars? Or pectin to make jam, spaghetti sauce or salsa mix or pickle mixes? Get them all here, and usually at lower prices than your local store!

Get them all here at the best prices on the internet!


The Presto Pressure
canners are out
of stock, but Tfal's
are available!


Above is the
2020 version of
the Ball Blue Book