Apple seeds from my best 3 seedling trees (Western Maine zone 3)
These seeds come from seedling apple trees which grow well for me in the mountain foothills of Western Maine. USDA zone 3. The coldest part of winter can get below -30F, and the hottest part of summer can get above 120F. In my localized climate, the winter is approximately 6 months long. Spring and autumn are very short and wet. Spring is often divided into 2 seasons here: Flood Season and then Mud Season. Summer is very hot and humid with little rain. The most common apple diseases here are Fireblight, Scab, Crown Rot, Powdery Mildew, Black Spot Canker, Black Knot, Sooty Blotch. The worst diseases for apple trees here are Crown Rot and Canker.
For reference, most commercial rootstocks are not vigorous or hardy enough to survive in my climate. EMLA 111 is an exception, but cannot withstand the spring flooding and only grows about 1 foot per year. Geneva 969 is an exception as well. G969 grows ok in my climate, and can withstand flooding, but puts on only about 6 inches of growth per year.
I am giving away seeds only, for my best 3 seedling apple trees. No root cuttings at this time. But I need to know in advance how many seeds to save out before the apples end up being sold or pressed for cider. I will send 20 seeds per tree. I am not going to put a dollar amount on the seeds, but a donation would be helpful. So, if you are interested, then please respond with a post and let me know which trees you are interested in, and I will message you for shipping details when the seeds are ready. Shipping only to USA and Canada.
"Little Yummy" - No sign of disease. No vole damage. Seeding tree grows in a site that floods every spring. The fruit is a 2 inch wide yellow and red pearmain, sweet with very slight acidity. Ripens in September. Low vigor. The tree is only around 14 feet tall at around 20 years old. Spur-bearer. Bears fruit every year. Had 2 inch long spikes for thorns when it was young, which disappeared when the tree started bearing fruit. This tree has been propagated from root cuttings, however, seeds will be from the original tree. Very few root suckers.
"Winter Pie" - No sign of disease. No vole damage. Seedling tree grows in a site that floods every spring. The fruit is 2 inches in diameter, roundish, often lopsided, yellow with russet blotches. Spur-bearer. The taste is very sweet, very acidic, and slightly bitter. Makes delicious pies and hard cider. Fruit is ready to pick 1 week after first autumn frost and stores at room temperature until May. Bears fruit most years. This tree grew to over 40 feet tall in less than 15 years. Puts on over 4 feet of new growth per year. This tree has been propagated from root cuttings, however, seeds will be from the original tree. Makes for a decent rootstock, but OCM-21 is better.
"OCM-21" - No "proper" name yet, as I don't sell the fruit. No sign of disease. No vole damage. Seedling tree grows in a site that floods every spring. The summer ground water level is about 1 foot below the surface where this tree is, so the roots of this tree are always wet. The fruit is a 4 inch wide yellow and pink pearmain. Bears fruit on tips and spurs. Not sure how tall it would have grown, since I severely pruned it when it was around 30 feet tall at 9 years old. The fruit is ready to pick 3 days after the first autumn frost. The flavor and texture is reminiscent of Cortland, but the flavor degrades very quickly. After a month of storage, the apple tastes like a potato. Best used for rootstock, or for cider to be pressed within one week after picking. This tree has been propagated from root cuttings, however, seeds will be from the original tree. No root suckers, and the roots are thick, barely flexible, and stronger than oak which makes propagation difficult but well worth it. This is my main rootstock variety. My most vigorous apple tree. This is a solid tree. Grows straight and tall, probably because of the thick, strong roots. Loves water. Grows okay in dry areas too. Puts on over 5 feet of new growth per year.
Arkansas is a big climate change from Maine but maybe they can adapt being grown from seed?
The area I would plant them would be very wet spring and summer and have long periods of dry or drought conditions most summer and fall seasons but I would be able to water them. Cold winters are variable but we do have serious freezes and lengthy cold spells.
Do you think it's worth trying?
Thanks! this is a very generous offer.
"We're all just walking each other home." -Ram Dass
"Be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder."-Rumi
Location: Western Maine, zone 4b, mountain foothills
I am in Quebec, Canada, about 100 km north of Montréal. We have long and cold winters (we had some nights at -30 F to -33 F last winter) and my site is quite windy. We had some luck with few cultivars from Minnesota (Haralson, Red Baron, ...) ; some spots are more wet where trees seem to have trouble last fall even on Bud 118 (last fall was unusually hot, and cold came very quickly, most trees keeping their leaves all winter ; I suspect that trees on wetter sites were still growing too late and did not have enough time to harden for the winter), but seedling Antonovka rootstock did not have any damage on these wetter spots. I also plan to try various seedlings there. We also a small spot that is sometimes flood for 1 or 2 week in the spring (it is next to a stream) ; some seedlings have no problem there, other cannot support it.
For these more tough-to-grow spots, I'm trying various seedlings and I would welcome genetics from your seeds !
I would be interested to try "Little Yummy" seeds. That seems to be interesting for cider and I like that it has some "thorns" during the juvenile phase (that sounds like good self defense against herbivores !). I would also like "OCM-21" seeds to use as rootstock on my wetter sites.
I will happily make a donation for these seeds and I can also send you seeds from seedlings growing in my region if you would like.
Location: Western Maine, zone 4b, mountain foothills
David: I would be happy to send you seeds when they are ready. You mentioned Bud 118 and Antonovka rootstocks. You might find it interesting that neither do well for me. Bud 118 is almost always dead by the end of the 2nd year, as I have found it to be very susceptible to black spot canker. And Antonovka almost always runts out around 4 feet tall. Probably not coincidentally, snow only accumulates here to around 4 feet at the highest in the winter.
I would be interested in seeds from both your Little Yummy and your Winter Pie trees. I am in Saskatchewan, Canada, and we get cold (lots of it; -40 or colder most years) and dry, though we have had a number of wet years recently that have resulted in flooding in the area, though not on my property. Growing apples from seed is high up my to-do list for 2019.
I am in Manitoba, where winter is -40 for a long time. I have purchased a swamp for a farm (only way I could afford land) so these trees are of real interest to me. I would love seeds from all of them, please!
If its not too late yet, I'd love seeds from "Little Yummy" and OCM-21. I have quite a bit wet ground too. Thank you very much for offering.
I'm in ohio, email@example.com, I don't get on here very much but I can try to remember to check messages.
If you still have seeds, I would be very interested in getting some. Your site seems almost like a twin site to mine so it would be interesting to trial the seeds here to see how it compares to yours. I'm in zone 3b (Northern Wisconsin), on a very wet site with heavy loam soil with a very high water table. Last year the water table was within 6" of the soil surface for a time in the spring. That was exceptional but the water table is commonly within a couple of feet of the soil surface. Our orchard is mainly planted with Bud-118 but I've been struggling lately as a lot of the trees are declining due to what I think may be crown rot. This year I planted some Antonovka so I'll see how that goes but your rootstock really seems ideal for our site. I'm interested in all your apples but especially OCM-21 as a rootstock. Thanks!
Hello Nick, I am eager to try OCM-21 as it seems perfectly suited to our zone 3b site with a high water table. I would like to buy some seeds from you -- are you going to have some available this year? Thanks!