A brief introduction to our Apple varieties

Gloucestershire is famous for its heritage of culinary, dessert and cider apple varieties which are of national importance – over 200 recorded, many with specific uses and different keeping qualities

Fresh fruit, juice and cider have always been the main produce – with a recent revival of interest and investment in using again the ancient local varieties

Different varieties are ready at different times – there are local varieties that reach perfection on the tree or in storage from August right through to May, ensuring local apples were once available nearly all year.

You can grow these old varieties yourself, with trees available from GOT or from other local suppliers (see our Nursery page)  They be grown on different rootstocks to ensure the tree grows to the right size for your garden or orchard.

A few sample local varietal names

Longney Russet, Elmore Pippin, Arlingham Schoolboys, Kill Boys, Severn Bank, Hagloe Crab, Ashmeads Kernel, Leathercoat, Hens Turds, Tewkesbury Baron, Siddington Russet, Taynton Codlin, Quoining, Costard, Nonpariel, Flower of the West, Rose of Cirencester, Royal Turk, Over Apple.

For a full list of names visit our Gloucestershire Apples Listing page.

Local Collections

A heritage collection of Gloucestershire apple varieties has been planted in GOT’s Longney orchards to ensure these old varieties saved for future. The planting for the Collection has now been completed (during winter 2017/18) and we will be posting more information about this soon.

Publications about Gloucestershire Apples

Charles Martell’s book Native Apples of Gloucestershire has been published by GOT as part of the Gloucestershire Pomona series.

It describes all the apple varieties of the area. It complement our other books (also by Charles) on Gloucestershire’s Pears and Plums. Details of all these are available on the bookshop page of our main website.

January 2021 Update (previous updates now deleted): We now have, as a result of the DNA work so far, revised listings of Apple and Pear varieties.  The details are complicated and difficult to summarise but but this document gives an overview for apples:

–  Apples– DNA commentary to help interpret the book “Native Apples of Gloucestershire”

Background information on the DNA research:  There is a summary of the national project available our news pages here or downloaded via this link .  There is also a lot of information available on FruitID’s website.  Click on the Help icon on those pages to get up-to-date material from recent DNA meetings and initiatives.

Gloucestershire Apples Listing

We have a full list of Gloucestershire Apple Varieties on this page https://glosorchards.org/home/fruitvarieties/gloucestershire-apples-listing/ and we will be adding pictures, where we have them, to the list soon.

Join to read more!

We are setting up a Members’ Page soon with additional information on varieties including, for apples, notes on the Origins of Ashmead’s Kernal. the Origins of domestic apples in general and Apple tasting notes.