WOLVERCOTE PIPPIN Like Winter Greening, this anonymous tree grows in the orchard at Wolvercote Church, near Oxford, planted by the grandfather of Joy Midwinter, now of Witney, in 1911. She lived there as a child and showed us apples from this tree at an apple day. It had been identified as Joybells, but clearly was not. The orchard was later owned by Mr Reading who kindly allowed us to take grafts. He was a geology lecturer who packed large quantities of the apples for field trips, to feed the hungry students. It is quite a pretty, flattish conical and round apple, with pale skin liberally streaked and flushed with carmine and red. Small to medium sized and ripe in August, though the apples continue to ripen on the tree over September and even into October. They are sweet and a very juicy thirst quencher for field trips. Attractive pale blossom.* Pollination Group 3

 
 
 
 
 

 

 

WOLVERTON CRAB An ancient crab apple, alone on Wolverton Common, near Milton Keynes. It was shown to us by Mel Jones, then employed as an environmentalist with the council. It is the most decayed apple tree we have seen, but one that is still alive and growing. Wolverton, is the deserted Anglo Saxon village around which Milton Keynes has been built. It might be one of the oldest (standing) apple trees in the country. Such trees appear to predate land use changes in the 17th and 18th centuries. It might be over 350 years old. A typical old crab apple, sharp and long lasting, probably once used for verjuice, cider and preserves.* Pollination Group 4

 

WOOLBROOK RUSSET Raised by Woolbrook Nursery of Devon, in 1903, from a cross of Bramley with a King's Acre Pippin. A flattish apple with golden yellow skin, streaked with scarlet, and lightly russeted. A late dessert apple with firm white flesh, juicy and developing a good flavour. With Bramley as a parent, it can also be used for cooking, keeping its shape and giving enough sweetness and acidity.

Pollination Group 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WORCESTER PEARMAIN A seedling of Devonshire Quarrenden grown by Mr Hale of Worcestershire, and introduced around 1873 by Richard Smith. It soon became very popular and by 1876 trees were selling for the extravagant sum of 1 guinea. Bright red, medium sized fruit, crisp and juicy, and with a strawberry flavour. Very sweet, and popular with children. Good crops in September, richer if left on the tree, but it does not store for long. Attractive blossom. Part tip bearing.

Pollination Group 4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WOTTON COSTARD An excellent apple from an ancient orchard at the nearby Wotton Estate. Richard Ames and Carrie Fletcher found and brought some apples to us. The orchard originally formed part of Thomas Lovell’s cottage holding in the 17th century, but was separated by the enclosure of Wotton (the first enclosure by private Act of Parliament in the country) as the old village was removed, at the time when Capability Brown redesigned the gardens. When he designed the new ‘pleasure gardens’ the old orchard was left on the perimeter and was seemingly left almost untouched for about three centuries. It still contains many old and interesting fruit trees, among them two large trees of this apple, both of which fell some years ago and re-rooted in the soft moist soil. They are very old. The variety may be the Grey Costard of Parkinson or Costard of Scott. It is not Catshead - the ribbing, waist to the fruit, flavour and keeping time exclude it. The presumed extinct Costard is the second earliest English apple to be recorded, in 1292. Parkinson mentioned the Gray and the Green Costard (assumed to be the extant Green Custard). In the Herefordshire Pomona of 1885 Hogg made a rare mistake in describing Grey Costard. He mis-reported Parkinson by quoting that the “gray Costerd abideth not the winter.” Parkinson actually said “The gray Costerd is a good great apple, somewhat whitish on the outside, and abideth the winter.” The Wotton Costard keeps until March, is heavily marked with whitish patches and streaks, when immature, and matures to the image of the Gloucestershire Costard in the Herefordshire Pomona. It is a first rate apple, excellent for cooking, and which can be eaten for dessert later in the season. It is heavily ribbed; the skin is greenish-yellow but develops amber patches and red blushes and streaks on the side near the sun. The firm, pale flesh is juicy, sweet, tangy and fragrant, with a flavour which develops in richness when cooked. As a culinary apple it keeps its shape, is excellent for pies and tarts and will also make excellent sauces. The flowers are pink and white and very large. The trees are regular, heavy bearers. Fully ripe in early November, the apples will keep with careful storing into the spring. *

Pollination Group 4

 
             

 

WYKEN PIPPIN A late dessert apple dating from around 1700, and believed to have come from a pip saved from an apple brought home from Holland or France by Lord Craven, and planted at Wyken (pronounced ‘Why-Ken’), near Coventry. Small, golden fruits, with fine russet dots and a very fruity, intense flavour. Very popular in the 19th century. A well-shaped tree, which produces regular crops. It stores until late winter.

Pollination Group 4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

YELLOW BELLFLOWER An old American variety perhaps dating from the 1600s, first recorded by Coxe in 1817. He remarked that ‘the original tree is said to be now standing on a farm in Burlington County, New Jersey, very large and old’. By 1826 it was in the collection of the London Horticultural Society. Scott recorded that the name was ‘Frenchified’ to Belle-Fleur so as to appear French and it then attracted a lot of foreign synonyms. A late season, large dual purpose apple ripe in October and storing to February. Lindley described it as large and oblong, with an irregular outline and skin of pale yellow with a blush in the sun but often without. The eye is closed and sunk in an uneven basin, the stalk is slender and sunk in a deep plaited cavity. The seeds are large and the capsules very large so the seeds rattle in it when shaken. He adds ‘a most excellent apple’. In Philadelphia it was highly esteemed as their principal winter apple. It cooks to a richly flavoured, golden purée. Trees have a spreading habit.

Pollination Group 3

 

YELLOW INGESTRIE A dessert apple named after Ingestre Hall, the home of Earl Talbot, though the original tree was raised by Thomas Andrew Knight around 1800. The tree has small, regular, golden fruit, crisp with a very rich flavour. It was once popular for garlands and table decorations. The tree was also admired for its 'beautiful drooping habit' and pretty blossom, and was much grown in the North as well as in Kent. The apples are ready to pick in mid September, and store until the end of October. Martin Gadsbey of Stafford pointed out that the original and proper spelling of ‘Ingestrie’ was ‘Ingestre’, pronounced in the same way.

Pollination Group 3

 

 

 

 

 
             

 

YELLOW WAXEN An excellent and rather attractive apple, whose origin is something of a mystery. It appears to be either British or American, but the truth might never be found. In 1871, an apple called Yellow Wax was noted in the Journal of the Royal Horticultural Society, but the only information given was that the apple was ‘middle season’. There are no other references that we have found in the literature, either side of the Atlantic. We found listed in the collection of Nick Botner, in Oregon, and wondered whether it might be an example of several British apples that found their way to America while becoming lost here. We grafted the first new trees here in 2009. It is certainly a middle season apple and aptly named. The fruit has an evenly rounded shape, skin of attractive pale lemon, with a faint flush of amber, prominent dots and a waxy bloom over the whole. Medium to large, ripe in mid September, crisp, juicy, sweet, lemony and refreshing with a slightly balsamic flavour. It will last into December and still be pleasant, but is at its best earlier. A very good apple, for our climate, where it might have originated.

Pollination Group 5

 

YELLOW SIBERIAN An important historic apple that was probably first introduced to Britain in 1758, according to Loudon, though it seems there are at least two different yellow Siberian crabs. None seemed to be known in Britain in modern times and we received scions of it from Tasmania in 2005. It is a larger fruit than some accounts suggest it should be, so it might not be the one referred to by Loudon. Several Siberian Crabs have been used to breed cider apples from the 17th century onwards and this one is very astringent and tannic, having no other purpose than cider. Ripe in September and keeping for a month.

Pollination Group 4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

YORKSHIRE GREENING An old cooking apple very popular in Yorkshire, first listed by William Perfect of Pontefract, in 1769. Forsyth described it thus: ‘The Yorkshire Greening, is a good-sized flatted Apple, of a dull-red colour, with a little green towards the eye. It keeps till August’. (August the following year). It cooks to a sharp, rich purée and has also been used as a cider sharp. The large, ribbed apples are dark green and colour up with brown red streaks and darker red in the sun. They are flecked with dark brown russet. The flesh is crisp, very juicy, 'with a brisk but pleasant acidity', according to Hogg. He suggests it only lasts to January. The trees have a dwarf and spreading growth. Large flowers. T*.

Pollination Group 5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
             

 

YOUNG’S PINELLO A medium sized dessert apple, raised sometime before 1935 by Miss E.L. Young at Letchworth in Hertfordshire. Ribbed, with pale yellow skin and red stripes. The white flesh is crisp, juicy, sweet and fragrant. Pick early to mid-October and store into December. A very good apple, which stays in good condition for a couple of months.

Pollination Group 3

 

ZABERGÄU RENETTE Raised in 1885 in Baden-Württemberg, southern Germany and widely grown throughout Europe, including Britain. An excellent dual purpose apple. The apples are a warm gold when ripe, with russet patches and tawny scarlet streaks. The flesh is yellow, with a good blend of sweetness and sharpness. A good cropper with very attractive blossom. Triploid. Ready for picking mid October, storing into March.

Pollination Group 3