Christmas Pippin® Apple Trees
- Eating: Sweet-sharp, crisp but melting, juicy. Excellent.
- Spur bearer (Good for cordons & espaliers)
- Not Self fertile.
- Pollination Group C
- Crops during Oct. Stores till Jan.
- RHS Award of Garden Merit
Christmas Pippin® Apples
Christmas Pippin Eating Apple Trees
Christmas Pippin apple trees produce a late season eating apple that has been described as "the new Cox".
Characteristics of Christmas Pippin Trees:
- Use: Eating. Superb, sweet flavour, with crisp flesh that is so juicy it melts quickly in the mouth.
- Spur Bearer: suitable for cordons & espaliers, trained on wires.
- Harvest: Around mid-October.
- Store & ripen in a cool, dry place: Until January.
General description of Christmas Pippin:
This exciting new apple has a similar flavour to the famous Cox, which is regarded by many as the best English eating apple. It has a touch of sharpness behind the sweet, fruity-honey flavours that gives it a real depth. The first chew on each bite is crunchy but the mouthful quickly turns creamy as the juice pours out.
The problem with the beautiful Cox apple is that the tree is not easy to grow and the fruit doesn't store well. Christmas Pippin is a tougher, more reliable tree in every respect. It crops later than a cox and the fruit do store well; they actually taste best when they have ripened off the branch for a few weeks. This makes it a good companion for a Cox, but if you have to choose one tree, we would recommend this one.
All of our Christmas Pippin trees are grown on MM106 rootstocks except bushes which are on M26 and cordons which are on M9.
Pollination Partners for Christmas Pippin:
Your trees are self-sterile and their flowers must be pollinated to make fruit.
Christmas Pippin is in pollination Group C.
This means that they will cross-pollinate with other apple trees in pollination Groups B, C and D.
See our Guide to Apple Tree Pollination for a full list of partners & more tips about pollination.
History & Parentage:
This modern tree was discovered in 2000 and introduced for commercial sale in 2011. It was found growing beside the road, so it is likely that it grew from a seed in an apple core that had been thrown away. The best guesses for its parent apple are a Cox or a Gala apple.
How Apple Trees are Measured & Delivered:
Our fruit trees are delivered in up to 3 shapes and you can also buy selected apple trees as ready made cordons.
Maiden: This unbranched tree is the smallest starting size. You can train maidens into espaliers and cordons.
Cordon: Christmas Pippin trees are spur-bearers, so they can be made into cordons and espaliers.
Bush: This is a style of freestanding tree with a short trunk of about 60cm. It will grow to about 3 metres tall.
Half-Standard: This is a freestanding style that will grow into a full sized, "normal" apple tree, about 4 metres tall.
Notes on planting Christmas Pippin trees:
All fruit trees like a rich soil with decent drainage, protection from the wind and plenty of sun. Apple trees like clay soil, as long as it is not prone to bad waterlogging.
Prepare your site before planting:
Improving the soil in advance of planting your apple trees will help them establish quickly and be productive for years to come. After you have destroyed all the weeds and grass (use Neudorff WeedFree Plus weed-killer for tough weeds), you can dig the soil over. Remove any stones and rubbish and mix in well rotted compost or manure down to the depth of about 2 spades.
You can do this on planting day, but when you do it weeks or months in advance, you will give the soil time to settle again.
Spacing Christmas Pippin apple trees:
Freestanding bushes: 12-18 feet (4-6 metres) between trees and rows.
Freestanding half-standards: 18-30 feet (6-10 metres) between trees and rows.
In general, allow 1 more metre between rows than there is between each tree in the row.
Wire-trained cordons can be planted in rows 60-100cms apart.
Espaliers need to be spaced at 10-18 feet (3-6 metres) apart.
Watch our video on how to plant a fruit tree for full instructions on planting a bush or half-standard sized tree.
If you are growing a maiden sized apple tree into a freestanding tree, a bamboo cane is enough support.
If you are growing a cordon or espalier, you will need to install training wires to support them.
Remember to water establishing apple trees during dry weather for at least a year after planting.
Apple Tree Planting Accessories:
For bush and half standard apple trees, our tree planting pack includes a wooden stake & rubber tie to support the tree and a biodegradable mulch mat with pegs, which protects the soil at the base of your tree from drying out and stops weeds from sprouting.
We recommend using mycorrhizal "friendly fungi" on the roots of all new trees, especially if your soil is poorly fertile.