Here are some notes on my experience of growing pink and red-fleshed apples.
All of the Pink and Red Fleshed varieties are susceptible to scab; Mott Pink, Pink Pearl, Pink Permain are especially prone while Hidden Rose (Aerlie Red Flesh) is less so. All of the fruit are short lived on tree when ripe. Hidden Rose has the best texture and flavor followed by Mott's Pink. Mott Pink is a medium sized apple; Hidden Rose is smaller; Pink Pearl is also medium sized. Pink Pearl and Mott's Pink ripen in August; Pink Permain and Hidden Rose in September. The Pink Pearl tree in partial shade does much better than the tree in full sun (possibly too hot here).
Rubaiyat is very small - maybe 50% larger than a golf ball. It ripens in September. Thornberry is also very small. Neither Rubaiyat nor Thornberry are vigorous growers on Mark. I suggest that the rootstocks to use are those which encourage large size and are fireblight resistant. Webster Pinkmeat apples are not very memorable; no really noteworthy features apart from the red flesh.
Other things I've noticed: the Almata tree is very vigorous, and ripens in early August. Scab is not a big problem. The apple is attractive and small, flesh very tart. Niedzwetkyana is slightly larger than Almata; ripens in August. The tree is not a vigorous grower, but this may be because it's on Mark rootstock. The apples attract squirrels; I haven't had a fruit from this tree in two years. Blooms and leaves (bronze tint) are very attractive and the tree would make a lovely ornamental on a larger size semi-dwarting rootstock.
I expect that Niedzwetkyana and Almata could be used for jams and ciders where sugar or sweet apples can help reduce the tartness. Bill's Redflesh (Scarlet Surprise) is surprisingly small and ripens in July/August. After reading so much about it in Stark Brothers literature I thought it might be special. It's certainly a case of good marketing.
No apples yet from Burford's Redflesh or Pink Early or any of the others.
....C.P., Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Fruit Quality: Mott's Pink and others
N.D. writes........I heard from a friend that Washington State University were sent specimens of Mott's Pink for evaluation, which they planted and observed. They found the trees to be
vigorous and although most red-fleshed apples are prone to scab, the variety seems to have some natural resistance. The leaves are green and the flowers light magenta, which
makes it an attractive ornamental in spring.
The trees bear quite well and the fruit is medium to small, ripening in mid September in Mount Vernon, Virginia. The skin is greenish yellow, with a pink undertone developing
through the season. The flesh is mottled cream amd pink, with a pattern radiating from the core as the apples ripen. The flavour is tart to subacid; the fruit of fair to good quality.
The colour and flavour seem to be attractive to children.
Others which were observed were Pink Pearl, Pink Sparkle and Hidden Rose.
Pink Pearl's flavour was judged to be relatively poor. This apple was the Albert Etter 'Surprise' hybrid singled out for patenting and official introduction in the mid 1940s, so presumably its flavour can be better if the conditions are right.
Pink Sparkle (Pink Pearmain) ripened early but they found the flesh soft and mushy. This apple is thought to be another of Albert Etter's apples. Other growers have commented: Medium to large size. Red with red stripes when ripe. Flesh color deep pink. Tart, mildly sweet, aromatic flavor.
Hidden Rose was late ripening so didn't perform well, but would probably do better in warmer areas.
edited by N.D, with thanks to C.P. for writing down his experiences for us.
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