The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Apple varieties that don't get cedar apple rust

Cedar apple rust

"We also have problems with [cedar apple rust].  Getting resistant apples makes a tremendous difference.  Saving susceptible varieties can be done, but requires extra time and funds....  Please share the whole list of which apples in your orchard are susceptible and which are not. We have several lists and they conflict somewhat, due to the exact circumstances of each site." --- jacurry

The list below includes varieties that books report have at least some resistance to cedar apple rust, and I've added notations to the varieties I've tried:

  • Arkansas Black
  • Baldwin
  • Belle de Boskoop
  • Black Limbertwig
  • Bramley Seedling
  • Duchess (aka Duchess of Oldenburg)
  • Empire (slight damage)
  • Enterprise (no damage)
  • Fireside
  • Florina
  • Freedom
  • Grimes Golden (serious damage)
  • Hardy Cumberland
  • Hudson's Golden Gem
  • Keepsake
  • Kidd's Orange Red (moderate damage)
  • King David (no damage, but currently small)
  • Liberty (slight damage)
  • Lodi
  • Mammoth Black Twig (slight damage)
  • McIntosh
  • Myers Royal Limbertwig
  • Novamac
  • Prima
  • Priscilla
  • Pristine (moderate damage)
  • Ralls Genet
  • Red Delicious (no damage, but currently small)
  • Redfree
  • Red Limbertwig
  • Rusty Coat
  • Summer Rambo (moderate damage)
  • Sundance
  • Sweet Sixteen (serious damage)
  • Virginia Beauty (slight damage)
  • William's Pride (slight damage)
  • Winesap (no damage, but currently small)
  • Yates
  • Yellow Transparent (moderate damage)

Plain text varieties are those I don't have enough experience with yet to report on, bold varieties are those I highly recommend in cedar-apple-rust areas, italicized varieties are ones I might recommend, and struck-through varieties don't seem able to handle the rust in our region.

I'd love to hear from other readers with your list of apple varieties that do and don't show cedar-apple-rust damage.  Share your information in the comments section and I'll edit this post to add to the list!

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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My apple trees definitely have exposure; there are a lot of cedars nearby. One tree has had signs of infection most years. Over about three seasons, my results are:

Resistant / no symptoms: Stayman, King David, Black Limbertwig, Striped June (also known as Margaret), Liberty, Enterprise

Susceptible: Goldrush (severe damage most years)

Comment by Anonymous Sun Jun 29 09:43:36 2014
I've commented before on how I have cedar trees all over the place in my area. I have a Stayman Winesap tree that is about 10 years old and it's completely filled with Cedar Apple Rust. Yes it produces apples, but they're barely edible. Perhaps I should've fed them to my neighbor's pigs when he had pigs. Instead I'm looking at Stark Bros. catalog and thinking of getting their cedar apple rust-resistant trees Enterprise and Jonafree. Anyone have any experience with either of these two trees?
Comment by Nayan Sun Nov 23 10:12:06 2014

Nayan --- In my experience, cedar apple rust doesn't usually impact apple fruits. The fungus just weakens the trees so they don't grow well and don't have many fruits, but the fruits that do exist are just as good as on uninfected trees.

I'm not sure if you're used to eating non-grocery-store fruits (and if so, feel free to ignore this paragraph), but you really shouldn't expect beautiful, unsullied fruit from an unsprayed tree. There are all kinds of bugs and diseases that make apples look gnarled and blemished, and if you don't want to spray chemicals (which we don't), you need to figure out which is which and delve deeper into non-chemical control. In many cases, it's simpler just to cut out the bad spots!

Of course, fruit flavor will be impacted by many other factors as well. Thinning the fruits and pruning/training the tree to allow lots of light inside is imperative if you want big, sweet fruit. And the trees need full (or nearly) full sun to expedite ripening. Hope that helps you begin brainstorming your tree's problem.

Comment by anna Sun Nov 23 14:33:47 2014

These varieties have been surrounded by hundreds of cedars for three years with zero sign of CAR:

Paducah, Caney Fork Limbertwig, Kentucky Limbertwig, Black Limbertwig, Keener Seedling.

Maryland zone 7B


Comment by Anonymous Wed Oct 26 17:13:12 2016
Here are five apple varieties surrounded by hundreds of Red Cedar for three years and no sign of Cedar Rust: Paducah, Caney Fork Limbertwig, Kentucky LT, Black LT and Keener Seedling.
Comment by steve Sat Oct 29 10:51:20 2016

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