New season - spring 2025You can pre-order now for shpiping in spring 2025. No need to pay at this stage.
Orange Pippin Trees USA logoSpecialist fruit trees for your orchard or back-yard

Cortland apple tree

Cortland is listed in the RHS Plants for Pollinators
  • Picking season: Late
  • Self-fertility: Partially self-fertile
  • Pollination group: 3

Cortland was one of the first varieties to be developed from the popular McIntosh apple. It is a cross between an old southern variety, Ben Davis, pollinated by McIntosh. However as is often the case with McIntosh crosses, Cortland is very much in the McIntosh mould, with the characteristic crimson red skin and glistening sweet white flesh, although it does have a more rustic appeal than some other Mac crosses.

Cortland is a reliable and heavy-cropping variety. The apples are generally larger than McIntosh, but the sweet perfumed flavor is similar. Fruit quality from markets can be quite variable because Cortland does not keep especially well, but this is easily remedied by growing your own. Although primarily an apple for eating fresh, Cortland is also useful in the kitchen, and cut slices don't brown quickly.

Redcort - shown in our main photo - is a sport of Cortland with similar characteristics but a deeper crimson skin.

Cortland apple trees for sale

You can pre-order now for spring 2025

  • 1Semi-dwarf 1-year bare-root tree $37.95
    Mature height: 8ft-12ft after 10 years
    G.210 rootstock
  • 2Semi-standard 1-year bare-root tree $37.95
    Mature height: 16ft-24ft after 10 years
    B.118 rootstock

How to grow

Cortland is an easy apple to grow in most cooler climates, with no particular vices.

Advice on fruit tree pollination.


Raised at the New York State Experiment Station, Geneva, 1898. McIntosh x Ben Davis.

Cortland characteristics

  • Gardening skillBeginner
  • Self-fertilityPartially self-fertile
  • Pollination group3
  • Pollinating othersAverage
  • Picking seasonLate
  • UsesEating freshCulinary
  • Keeping (of fruit)2-3 weeks
  • General resistanceGood
  • FireblightSome susceptibility
  • ScabSome susceptibility
  • Cedar apple rustSome susceptibility
  • Cold hardiness (USDA)Zone 4 (-34C)
  • Summer maximum temperaturesCool ( 20-24C / 68-75F)Warm (25-30C / 76-85F)Cold (< 20C / 67F)
  • Country of originUnited States
  • Period of origin1900 - 1949
  • Fruit colorCrimson

Similar varieties

  • See also Empire
    One of the most widely-planted McIntosh style apples, Empire has the Mac flavor but improves on it.
  • See also Enterprise
    Enterprise is a modern American disease-resistant apple, good for eating fresh and cooking.
  • See also Fameuse
    A very hardy north country apple, known both as the Snow Apple and Fameuse, and the probable parent of McIntosh.
  • See also Macoun
    Macoun is one of the best McIntosh-style apples, with the characteristic flowery vinous flavor.
  • See also McIntosh
    A traditional versatile apple popular in the northern states of the USA. Also known as Macintosh.