All about apples, pears, plums, and cherries - and orchards where they are grown

Beacon apple

Beacon was one of the first apples released by the University of Minnesota, which has become a leading center for the development of apple varieties able to withstand extreme winter cold.  Beacon is cold-hardy down to USDA Zone 3.

It is an attractive red apple, and useful as one of the few cold-hardy early-season apples.  However the flavor is indifferent.

Last updated 02 Jan 2011.

Rate this variety for flavor

Current rating: 5.0 out of 5. Total votes cast: 2

Visitor comments

(Use the form at the bottom to add your own comments about this variety)

27 Sep 2013 
Too bad Beacon seems to do poorly in the UK. I ate a bag of them grown in NE Washington state, USA, and picked fresh in September, 2013: flavor has nice sweet/tart balance with aromas of lilac and Sweet Allysum. Fascinating and delicious!

01 Jan 2010 
Starter post

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Beacon is a bright red early-season apple with a soft flesh, noted for its cold hardiness.


  • Species: Malus domestica
  • Parentage: Malinda x Wealthy
  • Originates from: Minnesota, United States
  • Introduced: 1936
  • Developed by: Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station (University of Minnesota)
  • Orange Pippin Cultivar ID: 1230
  • UK National Fruit Collection accession: 1960-056


  • Fruit colour: Red


  • Uses: Eat fresh
  • Flavour quality: Average
  • Flavour style: Sharper
  • Harvest period: Early season
  • Use / keeping: 1 week


  • Flowering period: Mid-Late season
  • Flowering group: 4
  • Fertility: Self-sterile
  • Ploidy: Diploid
  • Vigour: Slightly large
  • Gardening skill: Very easy


  • Climate suitability: Temperate climates
  • Climate suitability: Tolerates cold winters


  • Fireblight  - Very susceptible
  • Cedar apple rust  - Some susceptibility

Relationships to other varieties

Parents and other ancestors of this variety:

References and further reading about this variety

  • Cedar-Apple Rust  
    Author: Stephen Vann, University of Arkansas, Division of Agriculture (FSA7538)
    Rated as susceptible - control usually needed where CAR is prevalent.

Fruit tree register

Do you have a tree of this variety in your garden or orchard? If so please register the details here and contribute to our international register of fruit trees.

The following Beacon trees have been registered - click the name to view more details of each tree.

You can also view these trees on a map.

United States

United Kingdom


  • Ann in Manturovo, KOSTROMA OBLAST

Latest Spring blossom records for this variety

2018 season

  • 28th May  2018  - tree owned by Steven in Skandia, United States

2017 season

  • 6th June  2017  - tree owned by Steven in Skandia, United States

Record your blossom dates in our Fruit Tree Register - more >>.

Latest harvest records for this variety

2018 season

  • 2nd week August  2018  - tree owned by Brooke in Madelia, United States

2017 season

    Where to buy trees

    The following fruit tree nurseries offer Beacon apple trees for sale:

    Where to buy fresh fruit

    United Statesmap >

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