Hot climates make growing apple trees difficult. This is because the most popular apple cultivars require a chilling period during the winter. In regions where winter temperatures don't get low enough, or don't stay low for long enough, apple trees don't grow well when spring weather returns. Growers in Florida, Texas, the American southwest and other hot regions can still produce their own apples by growing cultivars need a shorter chilling period and can tolerate hot summer temperatures.
This hot-climate apple tree originated in Israel, and requires only 250 to 300 hours of chilling each year. Anna apple trees need significant amounts of heat to bloom successfully, making them appropriate for warm-climate plantings. Anna flowers are delicate and suffer frost damage easily, but have a very long blooming period that allows at least some flowers to produce fruit. Anna pollinizes with TropicSweet and Dorsett Golden. Anna has fruit similar to that of Red delicious and fruits from late May through June.
TropicSweet apple trees are a patented cultivar developed by the University of Florida. These apples are firm, sweet and low in acid, with a red blush. TropicSweet produces a medium-height, semi-spreading tree that fruits in early to mid-summer, and pollinates well with other hot-climate trees.
This Israeli apple variety needs no chilling period at all, according to the University of California. Ein Shemer sets heavy crops of small, flavorful, mild apples ripening mid-season. It pollinates well with other mid-season apples, including Gala, and other Israeli apple varieties such as Schlomit.
This common supermarket apple variety grows well in warm climates. It flowers mid-season, making it an appropriate pollinator for many other apple cultivars. This orange-red apple is similar to Golden delicious, but with a spicy overtone. Gala is best for eating, rather than cooking or preservation. It produces fruit in late summer.
Dorsett Golden apple trees originated in the Bahamas, and produce 2 to 2 ½ inch fruit with yellow skins and a faint red blush. They are similar to Golden Delicious apples, and last 6 to 8 weeks after picking as long as they are refrigerated. Use TropicSweet, Anna or another warm-climate apple variety as a pollinator for this tree.
- University of Florida; Low Chill Apple Cultivars for North Florida and North Central Florida; Peter C. Andersen et al; August 2009
- Texas A&M University; Home Fruit Production – Apples; Larry Stein et al; April 7, 2003
- New Mexico State University; Apple Orchard Management in New Mexico; Esteban Herrera; October 1993
- North Carolina State University; Growing Apple Trees in the Home Garden; Michael L. Parker; May 5, 1997
- Alabama Cooperative Extension System; Apple Varieties in Alabama; Arlie Powell et al; June 2000
- Photo Credit Dynamic Graphics Group/Dynamic Graphics Group/Getty Images
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