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Ashmead's Kernel apple tree

Ashmead's Kernel

Ashmeads Kernel is a very old traditional English russet apple. It remains popular for its distinctive pear-like flavor which is quite different from most other apple varieties.

Although often considered as a connoisseur's dessert apple, Ashmead's Kernel is actually quite versatile. It can be used for cooking, or sliced in savoury salads, and it keeps very well in a cold store.

Ashmead's Kernel is also becoming increasingly recognised for its juice, which adds an interesting fruity component to cider and hard cider blends.

Ashmead's Kernel apple trees for sale

  • 1Small 1-year bare-root tree $33.75
    Mature height: 6ft-9ft after 10 years
    G.11, G.41 rootstock
  • 2Medium 1-year bare-root tree $33.75
    Mature height: 8ft-12ft after 10 years
    G.935 rootstock

How to grow

Ashmead's Kernel is quite easy to grow, and perhaps because it is such an ancient variety, it is relatively disease resistant. It can be a light cropper and this usually caused by poor pollination at blossom time - planting another late-flowering apple tree or crab-apple tree nearby is a good idea.

Ashmead's Kernel has good winter hardiness on the right rootstock. It is one of the best-adapted of the major English apple varieties to US climate zones, including the warmer zones of the south-east and southern California.

Advice on fruit tree pollination.

Historical details

Originated in England in the 1700s, probably in Gloucestershire.

Ashmead's Kernel characteristics

  • Gardening skillAverage
  • Self-fertilityNot self-fertile
  • Pollination group4
  • Pollinating othersPoor
  • PloidyTriploid
  • Bearing regularityRegular
  • Fruit bearingSpur-bearer
  • Picking seasonLate
  • UsesEating freshJuice
  • CroppingLight
  • Keeping (of fruit)3 months or more
  • Flavor style (apples)Aromatic
  • Juice styleSweeterSweet (cider)
  • General resistanceGood
  • ScabSome resistance
  • Cedar apple rustSome resistance
  • MildewSome resistance
  • Cold hardiness (USDA)(4) -30F / -34C(5) -20F / -29C(6) -10F / -23C(7) 0F / -18C(8) 10F / -12C(9) 20F / -7C(10) 30F / -1C
  • Summer maximum temperaturesCool ( 20-24C / 68-75F)Warm (25-30C / 76-85F)
  • Country of originUnited Kingdom
  • Period of origin1700 - 1749
  • Fruit colorRusset

Similar varieties

  • See also Egremont Russet
    Egremont Russet
    Egremont Russet is the most popular English russet variety, and a good apple tree for the garden.
  • See also Pine Golden Pippin
    Pine Golden Pippin
    A classic English russet apple from the Victorian era, notable for its pineapple-like flavor.
  • See also Saint Edmund's Russet
    Saint Edmund's Russet
    Not as well known as other russets, St. Edmund's Russet is nevertheless one of the best.