UPDATED:  21 April 2007

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Fuji Apples

Russian Story - THe Silver Plate and the Transparent Apple

Russian Apples

Apples in USA

Apple Pie


Apple Crips, Aunt Molly's -Cobbler

Russian Apple Charlotte

Apple Kugel

[Apple Noodles]

Links About Apples of Russian Origin

Apple Journal: http://www.applejournal.com/var.htm.  Talks about a Russian aple known as Alelxander (Emperor Alexander) frown by Beryce White of Elk Rapids, Michigan.  It is part of the  Aport group.  Believed to be from the Ukraine. It's season begin in Sept and extends to the month of Oct. and go as late as Nov..  See the "kitchen" section for some great apple recipes. 

Emperor Alexander Apple

Duchess of Oldenburg:   See APPLES:  http://www.siloamorchards.com/apple_tr.html#DUCHESS%20(of%20Oldenburg)

DUCHESS (of Oldenburg)   One of the pioneer Russian apples to America via England. It was known in Russia in the 1600's or early 1700's, reportedly introduced to England by the Royal Horicultural Society in 1824, and into America by the Massachusetts Horticultural Society in 1835. Valued for its extreme winter hardiness (Canada zone 4 possibly 3). A cooking apple that makes some of the best early season pies as it ripens in August here. The fruit is medium to sometimes large, greenish yellow with red splashing and striping, flesh is greenish to yellowish white at maturity, firm, brisk, acidic. Must be harvested before it becomes overripe or it will be mealy. May have some disease resistance.http://www.siloamorchards.com/apple_tr.html#DUCHESS%20(of%20Oldenburg)

Duchess Apple



Greenmle Nursery:  (photo of Duchess Tree): http://www.greenmantlenursery.com/ :

Duchess Apple Tree

Siberian Crab

Red Astrachan:  

LINK - APPLES OF NEW YORK:  www.pomologie.com/.../ vol2/illustr/index.html  This site appears to be taking pages from some kind of book full of illustrations about apples of all kinds.  Interesting information about each variety mentioned.  Does mention several Russian apples such as the Red Astrachan and the Siberian Crab.

Red Astrachan

History of the Apple:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple

>> it appears that a single species still growing in the Ili Valley on the northern slopes of the Tien Shan mountains at the border of northwest China and the former Soviet Republic of Kazakhstan is the progenitor of the apples we eat today. Leaves taken from trees in this area were analyzed for DNA composition, which showed them all to belong to the species M. sieversii, with some genetic sequences common to M. domestica...<<

Kazakhstan Apple



LINK - THE 4CS.COM:  http://www.the4cs.com/~cathy/Apples/variety.html  Has an excellent chart on varities of apples which tells you "Flavor, Texture", "Fresh & Salads", "Pie", "Sauce" and "Baking (Whole).  Gives you facts about each apple mentioned.


LINK- RAMSEY COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY, ST. PAUL, MINN. - http://www.rchs.com/Gibbs%20Museum%20Pioneer%20Orchard.htm   Is And intresting site which talks about different varities of apples who's origins came from Russia.  Several they mention are:

>>Red Astrachan #2

Ancient Russian apple, known in America for 150 years. Ripens in early August; tart for eating out-of-hand, treasured for apple pie and sauce. Very hardy, but bears in alternate years.<<

>>Dolgo Crab

Russian ancestry; in America since pre-revolution. Premier variety for jelly; heavy pollen producer, attracts bees. Ripens in late August; very hardy, vigorous, resistant to scab, cedar apple rust, mildew, disease, and fire blight and may be somewhat insect resistant. Beautiful flowers and reddish green foliage.<<

>>Duchess Of Oldenberg

Russia upper Volga region origin, 1700. Reached America in 1835; medium large, red stripes over a yellow background. Juicy, rich sub-acid flavor; early-bearing, long-lived, hardy, and disease resistant. Number one commercial apple in the early 1900s.<<


LINKS- USDA:  http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/AR/archive/jan06/apples0106.htm

>>Tapping the Apple's Ancestral Home

...Back in his office, Forsline explains that central Asia—Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan in particular—is likely the ancestral home of familiar domestic apples (Malus x domestica) such as Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, and McIntosh.<<


LINK -  http://www.wschs-grf.pon.net/evelyn.htm

>>The Gravenstein Apple

Gravenstein, The Apple That Travels

Apples have been a large part of the history of Sonoma County particularly since the late 1800s when Nathaniel Griffith with the advice of Luther Burbank cultivated the Gravenstein Apple for commercial use. Nathaniel Griffith was born in Iowa in 1850 and at 24 moved West. He came to California in 1883 and bought 78 acres on Laguna Road. Griffith experimented with many kinds of apples but settled on the Gravenstein. He marketed his own fruit at first then signed with a Los Angeles fruit broker and earned $5,000 a year from his apples alone.

The Gravenstein reportedly originated in Germany in the gardens of the Duke Augustenberg, Castle Graefenstein, Schleswig-Holstein. The Russians at Fort Ross grew grape cuttings from Peru and peaches from Monterey and San Francisco but where did their apple trees originate? Laura Call Carr, whose father's ranch encompassed Fort Ross at the turn of the century, recalled eating Gravenstein apples from the Russian plantings. The 1910 Apple Show in Sebastopol featured Gravs from trees at Fort Ross that were still bearing fruit after almost 100 years. Did the Grav apple migrate here from Fort Ross or did it come from other sources?

Here's an example of how apples travel: Henderson Lewelling, an Iowa nurseryman set off on the Oregon Trail in 1847 with 700 grafted fruit trees. Even though half of the trees did not survive the trek, in a few years, he and his brother, Seth, had grafted 20,000 trees. They brought many trees to Sacramento and sold them for five dollars. Eventually the Lewellings moved their nursery business to California.

Apples are the most widely cultivated of fruit trees around the world. Europeans worked to improve apple varieties more than 2,000 years ago. The largest producers now are the United States, China, France, Italy and Turkey with a world crop of 32 million tons a year. One half of the U.S. crop is eaten fresh, one-fifth is made into vinegar, juice, jelly and apple butter and one-sixth is canned for pies and applesauce.

Luther Burbank commented that the 'Gravenstein cannot be successfully raised in the hot valleys of Southern California, Sonoma County seems to be its home.' Luther, of course had never heard of the Annapolis Valley in Nova Scotia. This area of Nova Scotia echoes Sebastopol in that they grow large amounts of Gravenstein Apples and they have an Apple Blossom Festival each year in June (their growing season is a bit later than ours). Apples have been grown in Nova Scotia since 1620, apple stock having been brought from France. It was only in 1933 that they decided to exploit the apple growing valley as tourist attraction. The Canadian provincial government supported the first festival and now local businesses provide sponsorship. The Annapolis Valley's festival features a parade, a festival Queen and Princess, a Ball, an art show and fireworks. They draw thousands of visitors each year for a five day event.

We and Nova Scotia appreciate the Gravenstein apple apparently more than other apple growing areas in the country. On a visit to the Finger Lakes in upstate New York a few years ago, we stopped at several orchards to check out the local apples. Mentioning our great tasting Gravensteins in Sonoma County to those farmers brought hoots and a tirade of complaints about the faults of Gravensteins, (they don't keep, they don't travel, etc.). We tactfully did not offer further defense of Gravs as we sampled the varieties they grew but went away still liking the flavor of the apples back home better. I'm looking forward to baking my first Gravenstein apple pie this season.

"published August 2001 in the Sonoma West Times & News"

Updated Oct. 28, 2004


LINK -BIG HORSE CREEK FARM: http://www.bighorsecreekfarm.com/default.htm Gravenstein Apple

Excellent list of varities.  The following is  just one example:


>>Summer Rose ( Glass Apple, Lippincott, Woolman's Striped Harvest) - Summer Rose is a very high quality, early season apple originating in New Jersey in the early 1800's. It compares favorably with other better- known early apples such as Red Astrachan and Yellow Transparent. It is a late bloomer and escapes most late spring frosts. Summer Rose is an attractive fruit with smooth, waxy, yellow skin blushed with red streaks and blotches. The fine-grained white flesh is tender, crisp, and juicy. Ripens June to July and does not store well. Fruit Picture<<

STORY: "Glass Apple" Is Coming Soon.