These apples and pears were grown in North America during the Colonial Era and through the time of the American...
Harrison Apple on Mystery (Spring 2022)
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The most important apple for traditional Newark cider production. Also known as Harrison's Cider, Long Stem, Osborne Apple.
This tree is vigorous and very productive; Tom Burford (Apples of North America) states that a single tree can produce about 100 bushels of apples! It will need thinning to maintain annual bearing and it is tip bearing. It is scab resistant and resistant to rot.
Harrison apples are smallish, round, long-stemmed (hence their alternative name "Long Stem"), and yellow. With a smattering of dark spots and a slightly scruffy exterior, this is not going to win any beauty contests. But when pressed, Harrison yields abundant dark, rich juice that contains an excellent balance of tannin, sugar, and acid, and that can be fermented to a single-variety cider. Along with Campfield and Graniwinkle, this apple was central to Newark cider production before prohibition, and in 1817, Coxe wrote that Harrison commanded the highest price on the New York market as a single-variety cider. (From WSU: Tannin (percent tannic acid): 0.10; Acid (percent malic acid): 0.64; pH: 3.46; SG: 1.061; oBrix 14.6.)
The first Harrison is thought to have been grown by a Mr. Osborne in the early 1700s. These apples were widely grown in Essex County in the early 1800s, but during the 20th century the apple almost disappeared completely, driven almost to the point of extinction by urbanization and lack of interest in cider production. In 1976, the orchardist Paul Gidez happened to stumble across a single tree in Livingston, New Jersey, and in 1989, the pomologist Tom Burford found another Harrison and began to propagate the tree. Thanks to the efforts of these two men Harrison has been resurrected and now enjoys renewed popularity among cider enthusiasts. A more detailed account of this apple's rediscovery can be found in Lost and Found: The Search for the Harrison Apple by Fran McManus.
Fruit Uses & Storage
Skin color: yellow
Flesh color: off-white
Origin: New Jersey
Introduced in: 1700s
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