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

Limelight apple


A wonderfully attractive crisp and refreshing apple with a smooth yellow/green skin.

Limelight is a modern English apple variety, developed in Kent by Hugh Ermen.  It is an improved 'Greensleeves' type and is ready for picking in September.

Although Hugh Ermen's apples are usually developed with the amateur gardener in mind, Limelight has increasingly been catching the attention of small English growers, who appreciate its easy management characteristics.


Limelight apple identification images

All images copyright Orange Pippin unless otherwise stated.

  • Limelight
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  • Limelight

USDA identification images for Limelight

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.

    Parents and other ancestors of this variety

    See also

    Visitor reviews

    • 12 Dec 2017  DUNDEE, United Kingdom
      I inherited a tree of these in Dundee, scotland. Don’t have much experience with home grown apples, but to me these taste somewhere between a Granny Smith and a golden delicious in terms of sweetness/sourness. Good flavour but nothing particularly interesting. Nice, dense texture. Juicy. And they are large. Bigger than any apple I see in supermarkets here except for Bramley’s. In summary, tasty apple that I enjoyed eating off the tree but nothing special to write home about. Grew with no fuss in an area that is quite cold.
    • 15 Oct 2016  United Kingdom
      Our tree has grown well in Scotland , it produces a lot of small apples but they develop spots, bitter pip perhaps? I have applied lime this year and have some clean fruit. There is a large sycamore nearby ,will that starve the apple tree of food, water?
    • 19 Oct 2015  United Kingdom
      Bought two espaliered Limelight, and very pleased with them. Abundant yield of crunchy, juicy, sweet apples. Very good.
    • 28 Oct 2014  United Kingdom
      Limelight is definitely one of our favourites, rich flavour, crisp and refreshing. Flavour fades in storage though
    • 31 Jul 2010  CAMBRIDGESHIRE, United Kingdom
      Moira................ Lack of fruits on your tree could have been due to................ 1 - poor pollination due to not enough bees, or perhaps bad weather that grounded the bees................. 2 - lack of a suitable pollinator tree nearby (a different variety flowering at the same time)................ 3 - perhaps the blossom was damaged by the unusually late frosts that we had this year................. 4 - trees sometimes don't fruit well until they've laid down a good root system, which can take a few years, depending on your growing conditions and the variety.
    • 28 Jul 2010  WORCESTERSHIRE, United Kingdom
      I purchased an espallier limelight apple tree this year, which had loads of blossom, and then shows no sign of producing any apples. I am wondering what I should have done differently. Have kept it well watered through this very dry summer!!!
    • 29 Jun 2010  WASHINGTON, United States
      Lyn Jones: I have been looking at one of the parent cultivars of Limelight, Greensleeves, in part because it is reputed to have a long bloom time. Have you kept track of the length of bloom for your (admittedly young) Limelight tree in 2010? Also, how do you find the flavor? Hugh Ermen has developed quite a reputation for creating Herefordshire Russet and Scruptious, therefore this cultivar piques my interest. BTW, the tree with longest bloom time in my yard has been Ashmead's Kernel: 19 days, overlapping the blooms of most of my trees. This will be the first year in which I may taste its fruit. It seems to be unknown in eastern WA.

    Tree register

    United Kingdom

    Spring blossom records for this variety

    2014 season

    • 13th May  2014  - tree owned by stanwatt2008@hotmail.co.uk in Gardenstown, United Kingdom
    • May  2014  - tree owned by Dave in Derby, United Kingdom

    2013 season

    2011 season

    2009 season

    • May  2009  - tree owned by Lyn in Cambridge, United Kingdom

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

    Harvest records for this variety

    2013 season

    2009 season

    • September  2009  - tree owned by Lyn in Cambridge, United Kingdom


    • Species: Malus domestica - Apple
    • Parentage: Discovery and Greensleaves
    • Originates from: England, United Kingdom
    • Introduced: Hugh Ermen, 1980s


    • Awards: RHS AGM (current)
    • Country of origin: United Kingdom
    • Period of origin: 1950 - 1999
    • Fruit colour: Green / Yellow
    • Flower colour: White
    • Leaf colour: Green
    • Popularity: Best sellers
    • Annual cycle: Deciduous


    • Picking season: Mid
    • Keeping (of fruit): 2-3 weeks
    • Flavour quality: Good
    • Flavour style (apples): Sharper
    • Discoloration of fruit: Oxidising
    • Cropping: Heavy
    • Fruit persistence: Normal ripening
    • Food uses: Eating fresh
    • Food uses: Juice
    • Picking period: mid-September
    • Wildlife: RHS Plants for Pollinators


    • Gardening skill: Beginner
    • Flowering group: 3
    • Pollinating others: Average
    • Ploidy: Diploid
    • Vigour: Weak growing
    • Bearing regularity: Regular
    • Fruit bearing: Spur-bearer
    • Self-fertility: Not self-fertile


    • Climate suitability: Temperate climates
    • Summer average maximum temperatures: Cool ( 20-24C / 68-75F)
    • Cold hardiness (RHS): H6 (to -20C)
    • Summer average maximum temperatures: Cold (< 20C / 67F)

    Other qualities

    • Disease resistance: Good
    • Scab (Apple and Pear): Some susceptibility

    Where to buy trees

    The following tree nurseries offer Limelight apple trees for sale:

    Where to buy fresh fruit

    The following orchards grow Limelight:

    United Kingdom

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