Apple Index - "W"

Wallace Howard

watercolor of a yellow apple with numerous red stripes

Description: Fruit above medium to very large in size, roundish.  Skin thick, tough, moderately smooth or roughened with russet dots, yellow nearly overspread with orange-red, nearly covered with crimson and narrow darker stripes; dots numerous and rather large. Flesh yellowish white, crisp, fine textured, sweet or mild subacid flavor.  Ripens late.

History: Raised by Robert Boatman of Dillon, Walker County, Georgia, on the Lookout Mountain Range.  It was originally named Boatman's Seedling (1858) but the name was changed in 1887 in honor of Rev. Wallace Howard by the Georgia Horticultural Society. 


yellow apple with rough tan skin around stem end and with medium sized red dots

Description: Fruit medium, roundish to oblong. Skin dull yellow with numerous large brown dots. Ripens August.

History: Origin unknown.  This apple was found by Tom Brown of Clemmons, North Carolina.



red apple with some green patches and with a white haze covering the entire fruit

Description: Fruit medium or below, roundish; skin greenish yellow covered with a heavy bloom over light and darker red blotches that cover most of the apple. Ripe September.

History: Found by Tom Brown in Haywood County, North Carolina, and almost certainly different from the Water Melon variety which is believed extinct.

Western Beauty (Beauty of the West, Big Rambo, Musgrove’s Cooper, Ohio Beauty, Grosh, Wells, Mammoth Rambo, Large Summer Rambo)

yellow apple with red and orange patches and stripes

Description: Fruit medium to large, roundish oblate; skin thin, nearly covered with red and striped with darker red; dots numerous, gray. Flesh yellowish, moderately juicy and tender, mild subacid. Ripe August.

History: First described in 1829 in Ohio but probably originated with John Grosh in Marietta, Pennsylvania, about 1815.


White Top

round smooth green apple

Description: Fruit small to below medium, roundish. Skin dull yellowish green, smooth. Ripens July.

History: Origin unknown. Variety found by Tom Brown of Clemmons, North Carolina.

White Winter Pearmain (Campbellite, Griffin’s Pearmain [ in Texas], White Pearmain)

green apple with large red spots

Description: Fruit medium or above, roundish to slightly oblong, conical, often oblique; skin smooth, waxy, greenish turning to pale yellow, sometimes with a faint blush or bronzing, perhaps clouded with darker green in splotches or spots; dots numerous, small, pale or russet, elongated around the cavity. Flesh white or yellowish, tender, crisp, juicy, fine-grained, aromatic, subacid to almost sweet. Fruit hangs on the tree for a long time if not picked. Ripe September/October and a fairly good keeper.

History: Warder (1867) gives the history of this high-quality apple: “This favorite fruit was brought to Indiana by…saddlebag transportation. In one lot of grafts, two varieties, having lost their labels, were propagated and fruited without name. Being Pearmain shaped, they were called respectively, Red and White Winter Pearmains. The former proved to be Esopus Spitzenburg; the latter has never yet been identified, though believed to be an old eastern variety.”


William’s Favorite (Williams, Williams Apple, Williams Early Red, Ladies Apple, Queen, Williams Red, Southern Queen, Early Red, Red, Favorite)

green apple largely covered with light red streaks and blush

Description: Fruit medium or above, roundish to oblong, conical, often lobed, sometimes angular; skin smooth, heavily washed and striped with two shades of bright red, darker red on the sunny side; dots scattered, inconspicuous, small, white and russet, some areole. Flesh yellowish white, stained red at the core line, breaking, tender, moderately juicy, mild subacid. Ripe July.

History: The original tree grew on the farm of Captain Benjamin Williams in Roxbury, Massachusetts, about 1750. The fruit was known there as Queen or Ladies Apple. It gradually worked its way into the South in the late years of the nineteenth century.


green apple with a pale red blush

Description: Fruit medium, roundish, skin yellowish green with pinkish red blush on sunny side. Skin smooth. Ripens late August – early September.

History: Bruce Ingram, on a wild turkey hunt in West Virginia, found two old apple trees on the Roger Wilson farm in Fayette County. Family lore is that this apple was brought from Scotland in the 1740s when the family purchased the land that Roger Wilson still occupies. From the late 1800s to the 1920s the Wilson apple was grown commercially in the area. “It is a great variety for apple butter and general stovetop cooking,” Roger Wilson says.  An apple named Wilson was sold from 1858 to 1869 by two Virginia nurseries without description, probably this very variety.


Winesap® (Holland’s Red Winter, Royal Red, Texan Red, Old Fashion Winesap, Blacktwig, Potpie, Refugee, Winter Winesap, Wine Sop, Banana)

red apple with small white spots

Description: Fruit medium, usually roundish but sometimes rather oblate, conical, flattened at the base; skin tough, mostly covered with splashes and occasionally stripes of dark red, sometimes with patches of yellow near the stem, sometimes with a faint bloom, often with a fine russet netting especially near the stem end; dots small or medium size, scattered, whitish and russet. Flesh yellow, firm, crisp, very juicy, fine-grained, sprightly subacid becoming sweeter in storage. Ripe September/October and a good keeper.

History: Historically, no other apple even comes close to being as popular in the South as the Winesap. By a large margin it is the apple variety listed in old southern nursery catalogs more often than any other. Winesap certainly originated in New Jersey before 1800. It was first described, as a cider apple, by Dr. James Mease in a book published in Philadelphia in 1804. He makes no mention of the origin of Winesap, noting only “cultivated by Samuel Coles, of Moore’s Town, New Jersey.” By 1824 Winesap was being sold as a cider and eating apple by a Washington D.C. nursery.

Winesap of Old Virginia (Virginia Winesap)

apple mottled with red and greenish yellow

Originated in Virginia in 1922 as a darker colored sport of Winesap.  Medium in size, flesh crisp, firm, improves in storage.

Description from Century Farm Orchards at


Winter Banana (Banana, Flory)

yellow apple with pink blush and small brown spots

Description: Fruit usually above medium to large but not uniform in size or shape, roundish to oblong but sometimes oblate, conical, often ribbed and oblique, often with a suture line; skin smooth, tough, waxy, bright pale yellow, usually with a blush that is sometimes dark pinkish red on well-colored apples; dots numerous, whitish or with russet points. Flesh whitish, crisp, tender, juicy, aromatic, fine-grained, subacid. Ripe September.

History: Winter Banana originated about 1876 on the farm of David Flory, Cass County, Indiana, and was introduced in 1890.

Winter Cheese

apple mottled red and greenish brown

Description: Fruit medium, oblate; skin yellow or orangish striped with red, some apples are mostly red; dots russet. Flesh very juicy, crisp, subacid. Ripe October.

History: Introduced by E. R. Turnbull of Brunswick County, Virginia, and briefly mentioned in an 1853 horticultural magazine. Sold by Virginia nurseries from 1858 to 1904.


Winter Jon (Winter John, Sour John)

pale yellow apple with rough tan skin around stem and covered in numerous rough brown dots of varying sizes

Description: Fruit small, often very small, roundish conical; skin pale dull yellow, often heavily leather-cracked, occasionally blushed; dots few, large, irregular, russet. Flesh whitish, a little tough, juicy, briskly subacid with an unusual flavor all its own. Ripe late October to mid-November or even later.

History:  A mountain apple of unknown origin grown in the southern Appalachians for many years but not described in any old catalogs or other pomological literature. It is excellent for cider and jelly, ripens very late, and often hangs on the tree until December. Tart as a lemon in October, it mellows on the tree.


Wolf River

very pale yellow apple with dark red blush on the bottom half of the fruit

Description: Fruit large to very large, roundish oblate to oblate, flattened on the ends, often irregular, angular, ribbed; skin mostly covered with bright red with splashes and broad stripes of carmine, often with a thin whitish bloom; dots large, whitish and russet. Flesh whitish, coarse-grained, soft, tender, moderately juicy, subacid. Ripe September.

History: The fruit of Wolf River is very large, often enormous. It was (and still is to some extent) very popular in western North Carolina and Virginia. Wolf River originated with William A. Springer, a Quebec lumberman. About 1856 Mr. Springer moved his family from Canada to Wisconsin. On the way, on the shore of Lake Erie, he bought a bushel of large apples, probably Alexander. Mr. Springer saved some seeds and planted them when he reached his new farm, which was located on a little stream called Wolf River near Fermont, Wisconsin. The Wolf River apple originated from one of these seeds.


World's Best

no image

Description: Fruit below medium, oblate; skin covered with red and darker red stripes; dots numerous, gray. Flesh grainy, moderately crisp and juicy, mild subacid. Ripe August.

History: An apple grown in and around Robbinsville, North Carolina since at least 1900. A tree belonging to Floyd Sherrill was found by Tom Brown in 2000.