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Keepsake apple

Last updated 16 Aug 2014.

Rate this variety for flavor

Current rating: 4.6 out of 5. Total votes cast: 19

Visitor comments

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

24 Aug 2018 
I got some scion wood this past winter of 17' and had one graft that's possibly going to take off into a nice looking tree. My interest in the Keepsake is it parentage of the one of the most popular apples in North America the HoneyCrisp so, I believe that the Keepsake will be a huge success for the apple gurues.

02 Nov 2015 
Favorite apple by far! Flavor changes slightly as it warms to room temperature. VERY crisp.

01 Feb 2014 
Everything an apple should be. Not pretty but lumpy, loveable and unique as a face, with a crisp flesh that can pulls away in clean chips as large as your bite allows. Light, floral sweetness quickly overtaken by a tartness that cleanses the palate and makes you want to take another huge chunk into your mouth. And then another and another. And then start on another apple. But perhaps best of all, the Spy is the queen pie apple, with its flesh remaining firm through cooking and its acidity the perfect complement for all things sugary/cinnamony/nutmegy. And even cheddary. Oh, and it keeps for months. True, you might find a blemish or two on its thin, irregularly coloured skin. But no two loves are supposed to be alike, right? A true southern Ontario/northern New York classic, although even here it's becoming a little tricky at times finding them. I sure wish more people knew how an honest apple this is.

14 Jan 2013 
We look forward to buying these apples late in the season each year, not widely available, but extraordinary. Crisp, sweet, full of flavor, very satisfying.

07 Oct 2012 
While not beautiful, extremely good to eat - very crisp, juicy, sweet and a little tart, fragrant...just wonderful. If you can find these, do yourself a favor and get some. (you can keep them all winter too - if you store them right)...

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Unattractive, irregularly shaped, 2.25 to 2.75 inch diameter, 90% red fruit. Fine grained, hard, very crisp, juicy light yellow flesh. Strongly aromatic flavor. Very hardy. Mellows with age. Attains peak fresh eating quality in January or February. Keeps in storage through April.

Keepsake phototape


  • Species: Malus domestica
  • Parentage: Malinda x Northern Spy
  • Originates from: United States
  • Introduced: 1978
  • Developed by: University of Minnesota
  • Orange Pippin Cultivar ID: 1762
  • UK National Fruit Collection accession: 1976-003


  • Fruit colour: Red / Orange flush
  • Flesh colour: White to Greenish to Greenish Yellow
  • Flesh colour: White to Cream, pale yellow
  • Fruit size: Small
  • Fruit size: Medium
  • Fruit size: Variable
  • Fruit shape: Short-round-conical
  • Fruit shape: Round-conical
  • Fruit shape: Conical
  • Shape features (vertical view): Lop-sided, unequal sides, irregular
  • Shape features (vertical view): Tapering toward calyx end or apex
  • Shape uniformity: Uniform in shape, Variable in size
  • Shape uniformity: Uniform, in size and shape
  • Basin russet: Little, light russet
  • Basin russet: Usually Russet free


  • Uses: Eat fresh
  • Uses: Cooking
  • Uses: Drying
  • Flavour quality: Good
  • Flavour style: Sweet/Sharp
  • Flavour style: Aromatic
  • Harvest period: Late season
  • Harvest period: Very-Late season
  • Use / keeping: 3 months or more


  • Cropping: Good
  • Flowering period: Mid-Late season
  • Flowering group: 4
  • Fertility: Self-sterile
  • Ploidy: Diploid
  • Vigour: Slightly large
  • Bearing regularity: Biennial tendency
  • Gardening skill: Very easy
  • Precocity: Precocious
  • Fruit bearing: Spur-bearer
  • General disease resistance: Good
  • Period of origin: 1950 - 1999


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


  • Fireblight  - Some resistance
  • Cedar apple rust  - Some resistance

Relationships to other varieties

Parents and other ancestors of this variety:

Offspring of this variety:

References and further reading about this variety

Keepsake identification photos from website visitors


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 Keepsake 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

Latest Spring blossom records for this variety

2017 season

  • 20th April  2017  - tree owned by Gil in Snohomish, United States

2012 season

  • 20th April  2012  - tree owned by Chuck in Worthington, United States

2011 season

  • 20th May  2011  - tree owned by Ron in Orion, United States

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

Latest harvest records for this variety

2017 season

  • 4th week October  2017  - tree owned by Gil in Snohomish, United States

2012 season

    2011 season

    • 3rd week October  2011  - tree owned by Carolina in Vashon, United States

    Where to buy fresh fruit

    United Statesmap >

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