Sweet Alford apple trees are commonly used in large cider orchards and it is easy to see why. The medium sized fruit are pale yellow or gold with a rosy blush and waxy skin texture. The sweet white flesh is low in pectin; perfect for squeezing juice. The juice has a mild bittersweet flavour and is classed as vintage, which means that it makes great cider without the need for mixing with other varieties. Sweet Alford trees have a spreading habit and a good rate of growth. They are also tip-bearers, which is good news for those of you who would rather not have to do much pruning. Although the crop size is only considered average, its clearly good enough for cider farmers to make a living. You can get picking in late October.
Crab apples like the Golden Hornet or John Downie are guaranteed to pollinate an orchard of mixed apple Trees. Sweet Alford flowers in the mid-season and is therefore a match for any of the fertile Trees- in the Apple Tree Pollination list. Apple Trees listed in Groups C-E are suitable pollinators.
This variety is grown on the traditional M25 rootstocks that produce full standard apple trees of 5 metres + in height.
Because Sweet Alford is a tip-bearing tree, it is not recommended if you plan on training your tree into other shapes.
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