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Benoni apple

Benoni is a pleasant early or mid-season heritage apple from Massachusetts, USA, ripening in late August in most areas where it is grown.  It has an attractive yellow skin predominantly (sometimes entirely) covered with a red / orange flush.  The flesh is light, fairly soft, and with a mild sweet flavor.  The skin is noticeably greasy, and the apples do not keep.

Benoni comes into bearing at a young age and crops well, but has a tendency to over-crop and then lapses into biennial bearing - cropping every alternate year.  This can sometimes be corrected by heavily thinning the crop in late spring of the "on" year, thereby preventing the tree exhausting itself and allowing fruit buds to develop for the following year.

Benoni was introduced to the UK by the famous Rivers of Sawbridgeworth nursery in the late 19th century.  Mr Rivers took the sensible step of sending samples to the noted fruit enthusiast Robert Hogg, who included an entry for it in his influential book "The Fruit Manual", and described it as "a delicious dessert apple".  Although not widely grown in the UK, Benoni's muted orange-flushed skin gives it the appearance of a typical English apple.

USDA identification images for Benoni

The identification paintings in the USDA Pomological Watercolor Collection span the years 1886 to 1942.

  • USDA watercolor image of Malus domestica: Benoni
  • USDA watercolor image of Malus domestica: Benoni
  • USDA watercolor image of Malus domestica: Benoni
  • USDA watercolor image of Malus domestica: Benoni

Citation: U.S. Department of Agriculture Pomological Watercolor Collection. Rare and Special Collections, National Agricultural Library, Beltsville, MD 20705.

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Tree register

United States

United Kingdom


New Zealand


Spring blossom records for this variety

2014 season

  • 14th May  2014  - tree owned by Charlotte in Hexham, United Kingdom

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


  • Species: Malus domestica - Apple
  • Originates from: Dedham, Massachusetts, United States
  • Introduced: 1830s
  • Developed by: Mr Mason Richards
  • UK National Fruit Collection accession: 1941-022
  • We are grateful to Brogdale Farm - home of the UK National Fruit Collection - for providing samples of this variety.


  • Country of origin: United States


  • Keeping (of fruit): 1 week
  • Flavour quality: Good
  • Flavour style (apples): Sweeter
  • Cropping: Heavy
  • Food uses: Eating fresh


  • Gardening skill: Experienced
  • Flowering group: 3
  • Ploidy: Diploid
  • Vigour: Average vigour
  • Precocity: Precocious
  • Bearing regularity: Biennial tendency
  • Self-fertility: Not self-fertile


  • Climate suitability: Temperate climates

Where to buy fresh fruit

The following orchards grow Benoni:

United States

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