Although hard to grow down in the valleys and on the coast, the climate in Dorrigo, Ebor and the surrounding areas is ideal for growing that most popular of fruits – apples. There are four main varieties received into store and when in season we sell well over 100kg a week. Apples are a beautiful fruit – there are hundreds if not thousands of varieties, with stories behind them all. The four local varieties we sell are the:
Fuji – our most popular apple. The Fuji apple originated as a cross between two American apple varieties—the Red Delicious and old Virginia Ralls Genet (sometimes cited as “Rawls Jennet”) apples. Fuji apples are typically round and range from large to very large, averaging 75 mm in diameter. They contain between 9–11% sugars by weight and have a dense flesh that is sweeter and crisper than many other apple cultivars, making them popular with consumers around the world. Fuji apples also have a very long shelf life compared to other apples, even without refrigeration.
Golden Delicious – very popular with children. The Golden Delicious is a large, yellowish-green skinned cultivar and very sweet to the taste. It is prone to bruising and shriveling, so it needs careful handling and storage. It is a favorite for salads, apple sauce, and apple butter. This cultivar is a chance seedling possibly a hybrid of Grimes Golden and Golden Reinette. The original tree was found on the Mullins’ family farm in Clay County, West Virginia, United States and was locally known as Mullin’s Yellow Seedling and Annit apple. Anderson Mullins sold the tree and propagation rights to Stark Brothers Nurseries, which first marketed it as a companion of their Red Delicious in 1914.
Granny Smith . Finally an Australian apple! The Granny Smith cultivar originated in Eastwood, a suburb of Sydney, in 1868. Its discoverer, Maria Ann Smith, had emigrated to the district from Beckley, East Sussex in 1839 with her husband Thomas. They purchased a small orchard in the area in 1855-1856 and began cultivating fruit, for which the area was a well known centre in colonial Australia. Smith bore numerous children and was a prominent figure in the district, earning the nickname ‘Granny’ Smith in her advanced years.
Royal Gala. Gala apples are small and are usually red with a portion being greenish or yellow-green, vertically striped. Gala apples are fairly resistant to bruising and are sweet, grainy, with a mild flavor and a thinner skin than most apples. Gala apples are sweet and aromatic, and can be added to salads or cooked, and are especially suitable for creating sauces. The first Gala apple tree was one of many seedlings resulting from a cross between a Golden Delicious and a Kidd’s Orange Red planted in New Zealand in the 1930s