Anna: Remarkable fruit for mild winter climates in Southern California and Arizona. Heavy crops of sweet, crisp, flavorful apples even in low desert. Summer harvest. Used for fresh eating or cooking. Keeps two months in refrigerator. Chill requirement is only 200 hours, so fruit set is reliable even in warm winters. Anna is partially self fruitful, but sets better crops when planted with Dorsett Golden. Harvest time is June 30 to July 25 here in the valley.
Dorsett Golden: Outstanding sweet apple for warm winter areas. Firm, very flavorful, sweet like Golden Delicious. Productive throughout Southern California and Phoenix, AZ. Good, sweet summer apple for Central CA. The chill requirement for this variety is very low- only 100 hours! This self fruitful variety ripens June 25 to July 10 here in our area.
Fuji: Cultivated in Japan, this "all-American" favorite is a hybrid of the red delicious and the Ralls Janet. The tree produces crisp, sweet tasting apples, sometimes with a greenish blush to the pink to light red skin. It is a late bloomer (Mid-April to May) with an even later harvest extending through November to the first parts of December in some zones. While partially self-fruiting, Fuji apple trees produce the best when block-planted with a Gala or Granny Smith. The tree requires about 700 chill hours for best results.
Gala (Original): A New Zealand variety cultivated from Golden Delicious and Kidd's Orange-Red, it is a highly flavorful, sweet-tart apple, excellent for desserts. While it prefers temperate, drier conditions, the Gala does well in warm climates. It has a minimal chill time of around 500 hours. It is a mid to late season bloomer with an early harvest, usually 2 to 3 weeks before Red Delicious. It has a keep time of 2 to 3 months with flavor fading the longer its stored, though the sweetness remains. The Gala is VERY susceptible to a disease known as "Scab", and gardeners should watch for any signs of the disease.
Ghost Apple: For the apple lover seeking a truly unique variety, the new Zaiger Ghost apple is in a category by itself. With totally white skin, these white flesh apples hang on the tree like floating goblins. The sweet sub-acid flavor was a taste pleaser at several fruit tastings. A heat-loving apple, Ghost harvests at the beginning of July in central CA. Though still experimental, it has an estimated chill requirement of 500 hours. Apple with midseason bloom required as pollenizer.
Gordon: Popular variety for Southern California. Red over green skin, good quality. For fresh use and cooking. This self fruiting variety requires 400 chill hours and ripens August 30 to September 20 here in the valley.
Granny Smith: Perhaps Australia's most famous export, the Granny Smith is the most recognizable apple in the world. With its firm flesh and tartness, it makes an excellent cooking apple. It is self-fruiting and loves hot climates with long summers, making it an excellent choice for the Central Valley. It has a prolonged bloom season making it a great pollenizer for other apple trees. The Granny Smith requires a chill time of 500 to 600 hours. Though mostly disease resistant, the Granny Smith tends toward biennial fruiting, meaning that it may "skip a season" for bearing fruit.
Honeycrisp: Developed by the University of Minnesota, the Honeycrisp can tolerate cold winters while enjoying the benefits of warm climates. The fruit is juicy, crisp, sweet, and highly aromatic. Though slow growing, it is fairly disease resistant. It offers a harvest as early as Semptember. The fruit can be kept and used for upwards of 3 months under ideal conditions. It should be noted that Honeycrip trees should be planted in pairs, as they are not full self-fruiting, and they require a pollernizer such as the Gala. They can be temperamental about soil quality depending on the climate. Not recommended for amateur gardeners.
Pink Lady®: Originiating in Western Australia, the Pink Lady is a hybrid of the Golden Delicious and Lady Williams varieties of apples. It is extraordinarily crsip, sweet-tart, and distinct in flavor. It is an excellent choice for a fresh snack as well as cooking. It prefers hot climates. The fruit is a gorgeous reddish-pink when ripe. It is fairly resistant to most diseases and requires a low chill time of 400 to 500 hours. The tree offers a long bloom period with average growth rate and a harvest in late October to November. It is partially self-fruiting, but performs better with other pollenators.