So who knew apple pollination could be so involved. Firstly I was not aware of how many apple species there were. You only see the commercial stuff sitting on our produce shelves – Granny Smith, Pink Lady, Red Delicious!
Sometimes I love to remember and talk about “taking the apple” from the tree in Genesis, and maybe how we are given choices each day about temptations. How many of us take the ‘fruit’ each day?
Apples appear in many religious traditions, often as a mystical or forbidden fruit. One of the problems identifying apples in religion, mythology and folktales is that the word “apple” was used as a generic term for all (foreign) fruit, other than berries, but including nuts, as late as the 17th century.
Well, there is a lot more to the apple world and this is only a very small introduction to it. So the basics are that apples pollinate each other. They cannot pollinate themselves! Some species can pollinate to others and some can’t. Usually in a small environment i.e, the suburbs have enough trees between them that if you had an apple tree it could be pollinated by a neighbours one (who loves community?) The main source of this pollination are our little friends called bees (more about bees later). Some places introduce a pollinator if there are not enough bees present.
This explanation of pollination groups is the easiest to understand:
There are four to seven pollination groups in apples, depending on climate:
- Group A – Early flowering, May 1 to 3 in England (Gravenstein, Red Astrachan)
- Group B – May 4 to 7 (Idared, McIntosh)
- Group C – Mid-season flowering, May 8 to 11 (Granny Smith, Cox’s Orange Pippin)
- Group D – Mid/late season flowering, May 12 to 15 (Golden Delicious, Calville blanc d’hiver)
- Group E – Late flowering, May 16 to 18 (Braeburn, Reinette d’Orléans)
- Group F – May 19 to 23 (Suntan)
- Group H – May 24 to 28 (Court-Pendu Gris) (also called Court-Pendu plat)
There are always heaps more information on the internet and in good books at the library. It is just good to know that the everything has a reason and a purpose, creation was designed to support itself, and how clever is that? Some of us are too busy with other man made problems to miss the beauty of natural design. Well done creator!