What kind of apples are these?
September 10, 2012 5:57 AM   Subscribe

Can you identify these apples in an orchard?

I'm trying to identify the variety of apples in some pictures I took on an orchard in eastern Washington state a couple of weeks ago. What kind of apples are on the trees in these pictures?
posted by msbrauer to Science & Nature (12 answers total)
Do you have any additional information other than the photos? Where they crisp or mealy? Taste more or less tart, was this a big commercial orchard or something pretty small? They kind of look like just red Delicious before they get polished, but apples are funny things.
posted by edgeways at 6:02 AM on September 10, 2012

Those could be any of the three different varieties in my garden, and I'm not even in the US. I doubt you'll be able to identify them without much more information.
posted by pipeski at 6:03 AM on September 10, 2012

Unless there is any reason to believe they are a fancy varietal, they really look like delicious apples to me (and they are a type that grow in E. Washington as a pretty standard apple). If you have more information about them, you might want to try this apple identifier tool.
posted by jessamyn at 6:05 AM on September 10, 2012 [2 favorites]

Unfortunately, I have no other information. Some had a little more green to them. I was thinking Pink Lady, but the bottom of the apples doesn't look quite right.

That apple identifier link is helpful, jessamyn.
posted by msbrauer at 6:14 AM on September 10, 2012

My first instinct is of the delicious family as well, most likely red. That first picture shows what I would consider the classic bottom silhouette of that variety.
posted by jeremias at 7:05 AM on September 10, 2012

Gala apples, perhaps?
posted by discopolo at 7:24 AM on September 10, 2012

Looks like a Macintosh to me.
posted by lyssabee at 7:44 AM on September 10, 2012

nthing Red Delicious or Gala: McIntoshes don't tend to have have that elongated profile or the "soda bottle bump" bottom. That it's in an orchard makes it more likely to be one of the state's top varieties and unlikely to be a random mongrel seedling, though apples are indeed funny things.
posted by holgate at 8:35 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]

Why not contact the orchard where the picture was taken to see what type they grow?

Apples are so genetically diverse that if you planted the seeds from a single apple and all those seeds grew into trees, then each of those trees would produce a different type of apple. The only way you get an orchard of a single apple type is to graft stock from the tree you want to multiply onto different root stock. So, red delicious apples ultimately originate from a single mother tree. Same with all the others with which you're familiar.
posted by onhazier at 10:16 AM on September 10, 2012

I am a produce buyer in Washington, and the varieties that a couple of orchards we buy from have available right now are are Akane, Gravenstein, Sansa, Zestar, William's Pride, and Gala. In the bottom photo, these apples look like Galas to me. They could also be Early Fuji apples, which are almost ready. I don't think they are Pink Lady, as these are a variety that is not ready until later in the fall.
posted by ezrainch at 11:32 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]

They look like most like Cameos to me. The first tree was discovered in an orchard of Red Delicious in Dryden, Washington. They have small lobes at the calyx end, and (generally, with variation) slight yellow on the shoulders, and reddish striping. One of the top 10 Washington apple crops.

They could be Galas- the timing is right. The more pronounced lobes are what make me think Cameo.
posted by oneirodynia at 4:10 PM on September 10, 2012

second on onhazier's comment. All apple varieties are from grafts, the seeds of which will not yield the variety it came from. It is fastening to think that the apples we eat are grafted from other trees and those from other trees and so on. The original tree's that yielded all of this began perhaps hundreds of years old!
posted by lake59 at 6:08 PM on September 11, 2012

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