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

Reverend W Wilks apple

Reverend W. Wilks is an early-season culinary apple variety, raised at Langley Nurseries in the early 20th century.  Reflecting the great importance attached to cooking apples in England at that time, it was named after the then secretary of the Royal Horticultural Society.

Reverend W. Wilks has many of the hallmarks of the English cooking apples of the previous Victorian era - it is a large, juicy, acidic apple.  Like many similar varieties it is also very easy to grow and the tree is resistant to all the common apple diseases and suitable for most temperate climates.

It remains a popular variety throughout the United Kingdom to this day, being versatile in the kitchen and coming into season towards the end of August before the main late-season cookers are available.

Last updated 16 Oct 2014.

Rate this variety for flavor

Current rating: 4.7 out of 5. Total votes cast: 3

Visitor comments

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

10 Jul 2014 
A person I know has just had her apple tree identified as Rev W Wilks (exact DNA profile) by the East Malling Research institute. The apples off her tree turn to pale yellowy green by October and have the most amazing delicate flavour. Not bitter at all. Very crisp and juicy

29 Aug 2013 
Ive had this tree for last 20 years and it produces an abundance of fruit every 2 years with small crop in intervening years. Very tasty cooker going to smooth puree when cooked. Average fruit size 75mm. Does not keep long though, and best stored in cool dark environment with plenty of air circulation. Crops around early to mid september keeps to around christmas / early January if theres any left by then. Needs very little sugar when cooking. You will have friends and neighbours queing up for them.

16 Jan 2011 
The variety has a tendancy to biennial bearing. Otherwise very productive.

13 Sep 2010 
Fruits are large, pale milky green colour. Flavour is good and fruits have a very pleasing scent, but the scent is misleading as the fruits are much too bitter to be suitable for eating raw. Good disease resistance. Compact, tidy and easy-to-grow tree. Not much troubled by maggots, but, like Grenadier, it suffers from superficial nibblings of capsid bugs and earwigs. These can be peeled off while preparing for cooking.

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Good early cooker, and easy to grow.


  • Species: Malus domestica
  • Parentage: Probably Ribston Pippin and Peasgood Nonsuch
  • Originates from: Berkshire, England, United Kingdom
  • Introduced: 1904
  • Developed by: Veitch, Chelsea, London.
  • Orange Pippin Cultivar ID: 1114
  • UK National Fruit Collection accession: 1979-183
  • Some historical details taken with kind permission from 'The New Book of Apples' by Joan Morgan and Alison Richards , illustrated by Elisabeth Dowle, published by Ebury Press, 2002.


  • Fruit colour: Green
  • Bultitude apple group: 5. Yellow, smooth, sweet or acidic


  • Uses: Cooking
  • Cooking result: Puree
  • Flavour quality: Good
  • Flavour style: Sharper
  • Harvest period: Early season
  • Use / keeping: 1 week


  • Cropping: Good
  • Flowering group: 2
  • Fertility: Self-fertile
  • Ploidy: Diploid
  • Vigour: Weak growing
  • Bearing regularity: Biennial tendency
  • General disease resistance: Good


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


  • Canker  - Some resistance
  • Scab  - Some resistance
  • Mildew  - Some resistance

Relationships to other varieties

Parents and other ancestors of this variety:

References and further reading about this variety

  • Scab factories  2012
    Author: Adrian Baggely

  • Apples of England (1948)
    Author: Taylor
  • Fruit Expert
    Author: Hessayon

Reverend W Wilks identification photos from official fruit collections

UK National Fruit Collection

©Crown Copyright more >
UK National Fruit Collection

Reverend W Wilks 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 Reverend W Wilks trees have been registered - click the name to view more details of each tree.

You can also view these trees on a map.

United Kingdom

Latest Spring blossom records for this variety

2013 season

  • 10th May  2013  - tree owned by Jean in Martock, United Kingdom

2010 season

  • 28th April  2010  - tree owned by N. in CAMBRIDGE, United Kingdom

2009 season

  • 20th April  2009  - tree owned by N. in CAMBRIDGE, United Kingdom

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

Latest harvest records for this variety

2013 season

  • September  2013  - tree owned by Biggsy50 in HITCHIN, United Kingdom

2010 season

    2009 season

    • August  2009  - tree owned by N. in CAMBRIDGE, United Kingdom

    Where to buy fresh fruit

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