Right now all the Malus in the Winter Hill show garden are positively groaning under the weight of their fruit. The size and colour variety in the fruit is amazing and add real texture to the trees. The fruit will fully ripen by Autumn but be warned some varieties are far better than others for use in jams and cooking. In general only the larger fruit is suitable for cooking…but I’ll get back to you in Autumn with some ideas on what to do with the ripened fruit.
For now, as the fruit continues to grow over Summer I thought it would be a good time to provide some detail on the fruit to help if you’re not exactly sure of the Malus you have in your garden or neighbourhood.
The Malus Floribunda (Japanese Crabapple ) fruit are delicate clusters of shiny green with just a hint of blush pink. The fruit is quite small, each about the size of a choc-chips we use when making our kids favourite biscuits. (I thought I’d be practical rather than scientific in my descriptions!
The Malus Spectabilis (Chinese Crabapple) fruit is very similar to the Floribunda in colour but they are larger – more the size of a 50 cent piece.
The Malus Golden Hornet (English Crabapple) fruit is green yellow in colour although some do have a hint of pink. They’re the size of a 10 cent piece.
The Malus Aldenhamensis (Wine Red Crabapple) has the largest fruit of all the crabapples we have in our garden. The deep purple apples are dull in appearance but still striking for their the size which is as big as a small lime. The tight clusters of fruit on our tree is literally making the branches bow under the weight.
The Malus Gorgeous (White Crabapple) also has deep purple fruit like the Aldenhamensis but only one-third the size with each apple the size of a 20 cent piece.
Malus Ioensis Plena (Crabapple Bechtels) small green fruit about the size of a 5 cent piece, light green with a faint white speckle….like a coating of fine icing sugar.
To be honest, the Floribunda is my personal favourite but they’re all spectacular and will be equally so when the leaves start to turn in Autumn.