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

Arkansas Black Apple tree

Owner: Bobby

Location:  Roanoke, VIRGINIA, United States

Age of this tree:2021 years
Soil:Clay with very little humus. Light clover coverage in fescue. 
Climate at this location:Usually hot and humid with variable winters. Lowest temps in the teens or twenties with hottest usually in the nineties.
Pruning:Every other year I thin and remove suckers, sprouts. Some tipping.
Tree form:Half-standard
Height:Taller than 15ft / 4m
Cropping:Heavy crops
Growth:This tree grows easily here
Local pests:Japanese beetles, tent caterpillars, codling moth.

Owner's comments

I plan to be more proactive with this tree for 2014. I have never sprayed it, and usually there is more than enough quality fruit. However, I am going to use a dormant spray as well as a coddling moth spray this spring and see what difference it makes. The tree was already here when I bought the house and was bearing loads of very small apples. After a good pruning, the apples doubled in size and were fabulous. Just as described... Dark red and hard as rocks with a wonderful tannic, tart, spicy, sweet complex flavor. Mine also got very oily/waxy in storage, but did not last more than 2 months before getting soft and mealy. They still made great apple butter though! I think my basement was too warm... I will probably process most of the apples after they mellow for chips, apple sauce, and cider.

Season records for this tree

  • 2014

    Spring blossom: 19 April
    Size: 5.5m / 18.3ft high   4.5m / 15.0ft wide
    Canker: Not present
    Scab: Mild attack
    Mildew: Not present
    Fireblight: Mild attack
    Cedar-apple rust: Not present
    Codling moth: Mild attack
    Again, we have had a cloudy and somewhat wet summer with lower than average temps. We did have clear weather for spring pollination which was good and fruits that has been excellent so far. June drop was not as harsh as last year and the remaining fruit is looking really good. I did not get around to spraying this Spring as I had intended.
  • 2013

    Fireblight: Mild attack
    We had a very cloudy and rainy season, especially the Spring. Harvested about seven bushels last year. This year there was only about two and the squirrels got almost all of them while we were on our honeymoon in October. Usually harvest in late September, but they were not ripe yet in early October this season. Darn clouds!
  • 2012

  • 2011

  • 2010

  • 2009

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