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Bramley's Seedling

  • Bramley's Seedling
  • Bramley's Seedling
  • Picking season: Late
  • Country of origin: United Kingdom
  • Self-fertility: Not self-fertile
  • Flowering group: 3

Bramley's Seedling is an outstanding English "cooker", and an essential ingredient for anyone interested in cooking with apples.

The reason for its versatility in the kitchen is its very high acid content. As a result it readily cooks down to a stiff but light apple puree - a key requirement for English apple cookery. When cooked it has an excellent tangy sharp flavor which few other apples can match.

The copious juice makes Bramley's Seedling valuable for juicing and hard cider.

Bramley's Seedling trees are well-known for being long-lived. The first tree was grown from a pip in a garden in Nottinghamshire, England, in 1809 - and amazingly this tree still survives.

Bramley's Seedling apple trees for sale

  • 1.1-year maiden bare-root tree 24.45
    M26 rootstock
    Medium size (2.5m-3m after 10 years)
  • 2.1-year maiden bare-root tree 24.45
    MM106 rootstock
    Large size (3m-4m after 10 years)


How to grow

Bramley's Seedling is a very vigorous triploid variety - it has three sets of chromosomes rather than the more usual two. Its triploid nature can be seen in the strong dark-coloured leaves, thick branches, and large apples. Bramley's Seedling is quite easy to grow, its great vigour and natural disease resistance means it usually throws off problems fairly easily.

As a triploid variety, Bramley's Seedling is not able to pollinate other apple varieties, but ironically it has attractive and prolific pink-flushed blossom. The fruit ripens late in the season, and stores very well.

Bramley's Seedling is one of the best English apples for growing in North America. Although it thrives in the cool temperate climate of an English summer, it is just as happy in hotter continental climates.



History

Nottinghamshire, England, 1809. The tree was raised from a pip by a young girl, Mary Ann Brailsford. The house, with the mature tree in the garden, was later sold to a Matthew Bramley who allowed cuttings to be propagated. The original tree still survives - and can be seen in a video made by the BBC in 2011 (note the typical English summer weather!).

The new variety was quickly recognised as an outstanding cooking apple and by the end of the Victorian era it was widely planted in England and Northern Ireland, becoming synonymous with English apple cookery. However for the next century it remained little-known outside the UK, since European and North American growers had long preferred dual-purpose apples which could be both eaten fresh and cooked. Latterly with a resurgence in interest in apple cookery it has become well-known amongst North American apple enthusiasts and, 200 years after its birth, this remarkable "cooker" is increasingly recognised as one of the world's great apples varieties.



Bramley's Seedling characteristics

  • Using

    • Picking period (southern UK):early October
    • Picking season:Late
    • Cropping:Heavy
    • Keeping (of fruit):3 months or more
    • Food uses:Culinary, Juice, Hard cider, Traditional cooker
  • Growing

    • Gardening skill:Average
    • Self-fertility:Not self-fertile
    • Flowering group:3
    • Pollinating others:Poor
    • Ploidy:Triploid
    • Vigour:Slightly large, Very vigorous
    • Precocity:Precocious
    • Bearing regularity:Regular
    • Fruit bearing:Partial tip-bearer
  • Problems

    • Fireblight:Some resistance
    • Mildew:Some resistance
    • Scab:Very resistant
  • Climate

    • Climate suitability:Temperate climates, Mild damp climates, Warm climates
    • 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 average maximum temperatures:Cool ( 20C - 24C / 68F - 75F), Warm (25C - 30C / 76F - 85F), Hot (>30C / 86F), Cold (< 20C / 67F)
  • Identification

    • Country of origin:United Kingdom
    • Period of origin:1800 - 1849
    • Fruit colour:Green / Red
    • Awards:RHS Award of Garden Merit