Apples Tree of the Week

Red Delicious Apple: The Fruit of Knowledge

By Sheereen Othman | September 20, 2016

Malus domestica ‘Red Delicious’

Legend has it that the red delicious was named when its discoverer sent samples of the apple to a commercial nursery in Iowa (back in 1892).  One bite into the apple and the nursery owner exclaimed, “Delicious”! The nursery owner must know a thing or two about tastes, because the red delicious is the country’s most widely planted apple tree. Of more than 2,500 varieties, the crisp, sweet flavor of the red delicious continues to be a favorite.

Here are a few things to note before planting one in your yard.


A red delicious apple hanging from a tree at Arbor Day Farm.

Environmental Conditions

  • Grows well in moist, well drained soils (hardiness zones 5-8). Is not drought tolerant.
  • Fast growing tree, growing up to three feet a year and reaching 10-25 feet at maturity.
  • Does best in full sun, getting at least six hours of direct sunlight every day.

Physical Attributes

  • Blooms pinkish white flowers mid-season.
  • Produces medium to large sized dark red apples mid-September to mid-October. Requires a second tree to pollinate and produce the apples. (Compatible with Yellow Delicious, Red Jonathan or Early Harvest.
  • Bonus: the apples have a tender, crisp, sweet and mild flavor that are excellent for eating fresh or in baking. Check out our Caramel Apple recipe or Apple Pie Egg Rolls for dessert ideas.

What apple recipes are you making this season? Comment below!

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  • Reply Alicia September 22, 2016 at 10:55 am

    My Favorite

    • Reply Normand Jalette October 7, 2016 at 3:59 am

      O.M.G. I’d simply just love to grow some nice apple trees, any where and for anyone who wants to give me a couple seeds! I’ll grow em for free cause I love doing it! I love growing trees! {the one in the photo is perfect!!}

  • Reply Tracey m kramer September 23, 2016 at 1:13 pm

    I am partial to red delicious and Fuji. The picture is so inviting, I want to sink my teeth into it.

  • Reply Normand Jalette October 7, 2016 at 4:15 am

    It doesn’t take much effort to simply put a couple seeds in some thing that’ll hold soil
    and, watch that little seed grow into a plant, or a tree!! It’s amazing to see!

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