Red Delicious apple trees

Red Delicious apple tree
  • Pick: Late-season
  • Flowering group: 4
  • Uses: Eat fresh 
  • Disease-resistance: Good

One of the most well-known of all apple varieties, Red Delicious is an attractive easy-to-grow apple with a rich sweet flavor.

The commercial success and widespread availability of Red Delicious apples have tended to make it unpopular with apple enthusiasts. However, when home-grown and picked ripe from the tree it merits its name, and it is also heavy-cropping and has a good reputation for disease-resistance.

The original Delicious is still available, and is known as Hawkeye. It lacks the solid red coloration of Red Delicious, but is considered by some to have a better flavor.

Last orders for delivery to reach us by 30th April

Red Delicious apple trees for sale

Mature size* Supplied as Price Quantity
Large  (9ft - 12ft after 5-10 years) 2nd grade - bare-root - G.30 rootstock  (semi-vigorous) Hawkeye $32.00 Sold outalert me

Delivery discounts. Prices are for individual trees excluding delivery. There is no minimum quantity but it is cost effective to order in multiples of 4 trees.

Delivery period: Trees are delivered in March and April. However it is best to order as soon as you can to ensure items are reserved for you. If you live in a warm zone (e.g. Southern California, Alabama etc.) Fall delivery is possible. More details on our spring shipping schedule by state.

*Mature size: Height shown is the approximate height of the tree when mature (after 5-10 years), not the height when supplied. Actual mature heights may vary considerably dependent on your local conditions and training and pruning regime - see our Tree Height Calculator.

Stock availability: Items showing as 'sold out' will probably be available again next season. Click here to be notified when we get more trees of this variety.

Alternatives to Red Delicious apple trees

Summary features of Red Delicious


  • Gardening skill: Easy?
  • Cropping: Heavy
  • Fertility: Not self-fertile?
  • Flowering group: 4?
  • Pollinating others: Good?
  • Ploidy: Diploid?
  • Vigour: Average growth?
  • Precocity: Precocious?
  • Bearing regularity: Regular?
  • Fruit bearing: Spur-bearer?
  • Overall disease resistance: Good?
  • Organic / no-spray culture?
  • Scab: Some susceptibility?
  • Mildew: Some resistance?
  • Fireblight: Some resistance?
  • Cedar apple rust: Very resistant?



  • Country of origin: United States
  • Period of origin: 1850 - 1899
  • Fruit colour: Red
  • Leaf colour: Green


  • Warm climates?
  • Temperate climates
  • Low-chill requirement
    700 hours
  • USDA Zone 4: No
    May survive in Zone 4, but not crop reliably.
  • USDA Zone 5: Yes
  • USDA Zone 6: Yes
  • USDA Zone 7: Yes
  • USDA Zone 8: Yes
  • USDA Zone 9: Yes
  • Cold hardiness: -20F / -29C?

Pollination guide for Red Delicious

Red Delicious is in flowering group 4. Red Delicious is self-sterile and needs to be pollinated by another tree of a different variety nearby.

How to grow Red Delicious apple trees

Red Delicious became a popular commercial variety because it was easy to grow, cropped heavily, and had good disease resistance - and these are all desirable qualities for the home orchardist too. It makes a good choice for the backyard orchard in all the warmer climate zones.

Historical details

Delicious was discovered as a seedling tree by farmer Jesse Hiatt of Peru, Iowa in the 1880s. The tree was not growing in a convenient location and it appears Hiatt tried several times to remove it, but it kept growing back - a testament to its resilience. Eventually he let it fruit and was impressed by the apples. He sent samples to the famous Stark Brothers Nursery, who recognised the potential of the new variety and commercialized it under the name Delicious - Hiatt's original name for the variety was Hawkeye. It rapidly established itself as one of the most popular international apple varieties.

Red Delicious is the common name for a number of red-colored sports of the original Delicious apple variety, which is red-flushed rather than solid red.

Botanical name

Malus domestica 'Red Delicious'