McIntosh apple trees

McIntosh
  • Gardening skill: Suitable for beginners
  • Picking season: Late
  • Keeping (of fruit): 2-3 weeks
  • Self-fertility: Not self-fertile
  • Pollination group: 2
  • Uses: Eating fresh
  • Uses: Cooking
  • Uses: Juice

McIntosh (or Macintosh) is one of the great North American apples. Discovered in the early 19th century it rapidly became an important home and commercial apple variety in Canada and the north-eastern USA.

McIntosh is notable for its distinctive vinous flavor - reminiscent of sweet grapes - its maroon skin color, and its gleaming white juicy flesh.

The "Mac" has numerous descendants, all of which seem to inherit the characteristic maroon color and sweet flesh.

How to grow

McIntosh is ideally suited for the climates of Ontario and Quebec and the north-eastern states of the USA. It is a reliable cropper and not troubled by cold winters.

Advice on fruit tree pollination.

Historical details

Discovered in the early 19th century by John McIntosh, a farmer in Ontario, Canada. It is thought to be descended from Fameuse, the "snow apple" of Quebec.

McIntosh has been widely used in breeding programs, and the characteristic deep crimson / maroon skin color is invariably passed on to its offspring.

McIntosh characteristics

Using

  • Picking season: Late
  • Uses: Eating fresh Cooking Juice
  • Cropping: Heavy
  • Keeping (of fruit): 2-3 weeks
  • Flavor style (apples): Sweeter
  • Cooking result: Textured puree
  • Fruit persistence: Normal ripening

Growing

  • Gardening skill: Suitable for beginners
  • Self-fertility: Not self-fertile
  • Pollination group: 2
  • Pollinating others: Average
  • Ploidy: Diploid
  • Vigour: Average vigour
  • Bearing regularity: Regular
  • Fruit bearing: Spur-bearer

Disease resistance

  • General resistance: Good
  • Cedar apple rust: Some resistance
  • Fireblight: Some susceptibility

Climate

  • Cold hardiness (USDA): (4) -30F / -34C
  • Summer average maximum temperatures: Cool ( 20C - 24C / 68F - 75F) Cold (< 20C / 67F)

Identification

  • Country of origin: Canada
  • Period of origin: 1800 - 1849
  • Fruit color: Crimson

Similar varieties

  • See also Cortland
    Cortland
    Developed from McIntosh, Cortland is one of the most widely-grown Mac-style apples.
  • See also Enterprise
    Enterprise
    Enterprise is a modern American disease-resistant apple, good for eating fresh and cooking.
  • See also Macoun
    Macoun
    Macoun is one of the best McIntosh-style apples, with the characteristic flowery vinous flavor.