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

Karmijn de Sonnaville apple

Karmijn de Sonnaville was raised by Piet de Sonnaville, an apple enthusiast who had prevoiusly worked at the well-respected horticultural research school of the University of Wageningen in the Netherlands.  Starting in 1949 he created numerous crosses, primarily using Cox and Jonathan, along with many others.

Karmijn de Sonnaville is his most well-known creation, a Cox-style variety, but with a distinctly more pronounced aromatic flavor.  Cox's Orange Pippin is the female parent and the pollen parent is Jonathan. It is a triploid variety, and not able to pollinate other apple varieties.

Despite the English Cox ancestry, Karmijn de Sonnaville grows best in warmer drier climates - like Jonathan. It does very well in the northern and central states of the USA, and has the potential for very good flavor.

Karmijn de Sonnaville identification photos

UK National Fruit Collection
UK National Fruit Collection
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Visitor reviews

  • 17 Sep 2020  a Brunskill,  OXFORDSHIRE, United Kingdom
    We had three trees of KDS when we lived in Edmonds, N of Seattle. Was introduced to them by the community college apple festival. The fruit is superb. However they are as prone to codling moth and maggot as many others ( which occur randomly in this area) so the yields were less than hoped. The flavor and texture however were so astonishingly good that even the small output was worth waiting for. A life without tasting a KDS would be a life half lived!
  • 14 Mar 2020  Scott Coughlin,  WA, United States
    Has anyone had good results with this apple in Western Washington?
  • 16 Aug 2018  Kirsty,  NORFOLK, United Kingdom
    This was a fantastic surprise finding this apple. If you like, this is my 'secret apple', in that I pick these and store them away for special days in the grey depths of Winter to lift the spirits and tastebuds! It has the most fantastic aroma, quite pear-drop like with a kind of russet nuttiness and flesh texture. The colour of the skin is also beautiful.
  • 24 Jan 2018  Age Groot,  NETHERLANDS, Netherlands
    Great (big) apple,difficult to get in supermarkets which is a pity. Bought it from a private person at the side of the road..... Very very tasty,sweet ,juicy,special aroma (i would say cox). People who buy this tree won't be disappointed.>>>FIVE STARS.
  • 25 Oct 2015  Carter Wilkie,  MASSACHUSETTS, United States
    Karmijn disappointed me on first taste, perhaps because my expectations were too high. Grown in Southern Vermont, my sample lacked the sprightly flavor and texture of Cox's Orange Pippin. (The photos on this site do not appear to be Karmijn, which has an orange bloom, resembling Cox.) - Carter Wilkie, Boston
  • 13 Mar 2015  Gil Schieber,  WASHINGTON, United States
    KdS is a good one for the season, not a keeper. It does get a bit of AM. I have about 20 trees and they're really vigorous, triploid I think. I don't want ladders, or pruning. Bud-9 is not small enough. I'm thinking m27 or p-22. If you like Cox Orange>My choices #1 Fiesta, #2 Alkmene, #3 Kidd's, #4 Karmijn, #5 Mother. add.... Skipley Farm makes trees, has scion.
  • 17 Nov 2014  Linnea Hirst,  WASHINGTON, United States
    Is this a good apple for pies? Does it come at all close to gravensteins?
  • 15 Oct 2014  Anita Knapp,  WASHINGTON, United States
    Best tasting apple I have ever eaten.
  • 17 Feb 2013  Dave Liezen,  WASHINGTON, United States
    Ed, considering the climate in E. Wenatchee - desert as soon as you climb out of the Gorge - KdS might do pretty well in a city yard or large enough orchard to raise the humidity somewhat. I hope to add it onto one of the trees being created for my backyard orchard.
  • 26 Jan 2013  Ed,  WASHINGTON, United States
    Referring to Dave Liezen's comments above, I did the same thing - went to Wenatchee and obtained several varieities for sampling. Karmijn was absolutely in a world by itself! I had one tree planted, and came back and ordered another! Might not grow well in eastern Washington's hot climate, but it is worth trying. Crisp, sweet-tart and almot undescribable!
  • 23 Jan 2012  Cees De Ruiter,  NEDERLAND, Netherlands
    Its not a apple from Wageningen bud from mister de Sonnaville he grows a lot of new varieties like Meiprinses and the newesr Lola
  • 11 Oct 2010  Dave Liezen,  WASHINGTON, United States
    Drove halfway across the state to purchase heirloom apples; tasted KdJ for the first time. Wow! Got to work this into my back yard somehow.
  • 23 Sep 2010  David A. Dawson,  IN, United States
    I purchased this tree as a two-year old from Raintree Nursery based on their intriguing description. Within two years I was able to sample the fruit, and can honestly say it revolutionized my feelings about apples - it is a wonderful variety, with intense yet balanced flavors, and ample sweetness and acidity. One of the three fruits was left to 'age' about 1 month before trying it, and the flavors had harmonized wonderfully. I am hoping to be able to grow it in my new location in Bloomington, IN (hotter summers, so I am pleased to hear reports of it doing well in N California).
  • 06 Sep 2010  Nimzo,  United States
    Dave: I am growing it in a hot, dry part of Northern California where summer temperatures regularly approach, and can even exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit. It bears tasty fruit in my climate.
  • 19 Jul 2010  Dave Liezen,  WASHINGTON, United States
    I saw a website that claimed this cultivar does best with cooler summers. Anyone in a drier and hotter locale that has done well with Karmijn de Sonnaville? I live in Spokane, high and dry on the eastern edge of Washington state. Thanks, Dave.
  • 16 Dec 2008  T.M.Boer,  IJSSELSTEIN , Netherlands
    First of all I love this apple for it's taste. And then ,how to pronounce the name. (car-mine de sonna-vil ) now that is not too difficult is it?
  • 07 Oct 2007  Chalres Klawitter,  WASHINGTON, United States
    How is this name pronounced?

Tree register

United States

United Kingdom




Spring blossom records for this variety

2020 season

  • 22nd May  2020  - tree owned by Jim in Hallstead, United States
  • 23rd April  2020  - tree owned by Jerry in Point Reyes Station, United States

2019 season

  • 12th May  2019  - tree owned by Jim in Hallstead, United States
  • 30th April  2019  - tree owned by Jerry in Point Reyes Station, United States

2018 season

  • 18th May  2018  - tree owned by Jim in Hallstead, United States
  • 8th May  2018  - tree owned by Jerry in Point Reyes Station, United States

2017 season

  • 6th May  2017  - tree owned by Jim in Hallstead, United States
  • 12th April  2017  - tree owned by Gil in Snohomish, United States

2016 season

  • 13th May  2016  - tree owned by Jim in Hallstead, United States

2015 season

  • 12th May  2015  - tree owned by Jim in Hallstead, United States

2014 season

  • 17th May  2014  - tree owned by Jim in Hallstead, United States

2013 season

  • 12th May  2013  - tree owned by Jim in Hallstead, United States
  • 27th April  2013  - tree owned by Florian in Brush Prairie, United States

2011 season

  • 27th April  2011  - tree owned by Cammy in San Diego, United States
  • 22nd April  2011  - tree owned by Cammy in San Diego, United States
  • 22nd April  2011  - tree owned by Cammy in San Diego, United States

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

Harvest records for this variety

2019 season

  • 4th week October  2019  - tree owned by Jerry in Point Reyes Station, United States

2017 season

  • 3rd week September  2017  - tree owned by Gil in Snohomish, United States

2013 season

  • 1st week October  2013  - tree owned by Jim in Hallstead, United States


  • Species: Malus domestica
  • Parentage: Cox x Jonathan
  • Originates from: Wageningen, Netherlands
  • Introduced: 1949
  • Developed by: Piet de Sonnaville
  • Orange Pippin Cultivar ID: 1035
  • UK National Fruit Collection accession: 1971-060


  • Flesh colour: White to Cream, pale yellow
  • Fruit size: Very large
  • Fruit size: Medium
  • Fruit size: Large
  • Fruit size: Variable
  • Fruit shape: Flat-round
  • Fruit shape: Short-round-conical
  • Fruit shape: Round


  • Uses: Eat fresh
  • Uses: Cooking
  • Uses: Juice
  • Uses: Hard cider
  • Uses: Drying
  • Flavour quality: Exceptional
  • Flavour style: Sharper
  • Flavour style: Sweet/Sharp
  • Flavour style: Aromatic
  • Flavour style: Honeyed / Scented
  • Flavour style: Sharp / refreshing
  • Harvest period: Late season


  • Flowering period: Mid-Late season
  • Flowering group: 4
  • Fertility: Self-sterile
  • Ploidy: Triploid
  • Pollinating others: Poor
  • Fruit bearing: Spur-bearer
  • Period of origin: 1900 - 1949

Parents and other ancestors of this variety


  • Scab  - Very susceptible

Where to buy trees

The following tree nurseries offer Karmijn de Sonnaville apple trees for sale:

Where to buy fresh fruit

United States



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