Apple trees are a great British favourite and their fruits come in an unbelievably wide rage of shapes, sizes and colours. These eating apples vary in flavour and texture; we have done our best to describe each wonderful variety. Some varieties take a few years to crop, but once they start cropping they will provide you with delicious fruits for many years to come. Many people comment on how much better the apples taste when you grow them yourself, the flavours are often much more pronounced and the quality far exceeds that of the supermarket apples.
Cooking apples are a diverse species and come in a wide range of colours, shapes and sizes. Some cooking apples have a firmer texture and hold their shape well during cooking and other's become sort and make fantastic purees. Many cooking apples are also suitable for juicing. They have a naturally sharp taste which mellows during cooking, they can also be sweetened with a little sugar or even with another apple variety.
Cider apple trees are categorised on their juice making qualities and range from sweet to bittersweet and sharp to bittersharp. If you have room for more than one cider apple tree, try juicing a few different varieties together to get a good balance of flavours. Although some of the sweeter varieties can be enjoyed as eating apples, the majority of cider apples are definitely best reserved for making cider. Cider apples are different from cooking and eating apples as the flesh has a fibrous texture which makes them much better for juicing. Aside from the fantastic fruits, the trees themselves will also benefit your garden; they are particularly valuable in spring when the pretty apple blossom appears.
The 'Ballerina' apple trees are highly unique as they are 'minarette' trees, which means that they only have one main stem and they do not have any side branches. The ‘minarette’ form means that these compact trees maintain their slender habit without pruning – making them the ideal choice for inexperienced gardeners. These delightful apple trees are perfect for restricted spaces and they also are well-suited to being planted in a large container or on a sunny patio. 'Ballerina' apple trees are also suitable for planting in a large pot on a sunny patio. Just like other apple trees, the fruits come in all different shapes, sizes and colours. The apples grow close to the central trunk and hang on short spurs; although the apples do not keep that well, they are great fresh off the tree and equally delicious when cooked up into an apple pie!
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