King David is one of the lesser-known apples that were promoted by the famous Stark Brothers nursery at the end of the 19th century. The tree was discovered as a chance seedling and the parentage is not clear but most authorities agree that Jonathan is one of the parents, and it has the aromatic qualities associated with that variety. The other parent is believed to be Winesap or Arkansas Black, and visually it has a resemblance to the latter.
King David is well-suited to the warmer southern states, and has good resistance to fireblight, a bacterial disease which is endemic to the mid-Atlantic region of the United States.
The identification paintings in the USDA Pomological Watercolor Collection span the years 1886 to 1942.
Citation: U.S. Department of Agriculture Pomological Watercolor Collection. Rare and Special Collections, National Agricultural Library, Beltsville, MD 20705.
The following orchards grow King David:
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