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So far Summit Tree Sales has created 14 blog entries.

Farmland time machine: historic aerial views of your farm

By |2024-04-04T18:14:59+00:00April 4th, 2024|History|

Many fruit growing families have connections to their land going back over a century. For numerous reasons, public and private entities have used mapping, aerial photography, and satellite imagery to document land use. Over the last decade many organizations have begun to digitize this imagery and make it available online.

Below are several links to resources that growers may find useful to see how a property has changed over time. These tools may help answer questions about how the present-day farm came to exist. What building sat on that old foundation? What year was the irrigation pond dug? What crops grew here before it was a fruit farm? In some cases, these images reveal how thousands of acres of farmland became neighborhoods and commercial developments.

Viewing these historic images may be simply a fun diversion or they may offer valuable information when planning buildings, plantings, or landscape changes. The links below are […]

New and Trending Varieties

By |2023-05-10T17:19:52+00:00May 10th, 2023|Uncategorized|

There is never a shortage of new apple varieties, but some varieties tend to stand out for their eating quality, harvest timing, or attractive appearance. Below is a list of varieties that are growing in popularity mostly with farm marketers and a few that are estabishing themselves on the wholesale market. (MAIA varieties listed below require membership in the Midwest Apple Improvement Association.)

MAIA-SM Sweet-MAIA® USPP 34,437

Sweet MAIA

An early-season apple with fall apple qualities. Crispy and sweet with bright, attractive red coloring. A Honeycrisp x Winecrisp cross, this apple ripens at the same time as GingerGold.

Sweetie™ USPP 22,228

Sweetie™ was bred in New Zealand by Plant and Food Research and is a cross between Braeburn and Royal Gala. It is characterized by its elongated fruit and dense structure. Sweetie™ has a sweet, rich taste and develops […]

MAIA-Mitchell: A better coloring Evercrisp®

By |2023-05-10T14:37:58+00:00May 9th, 2023|Apple, Uncategorized, Varieties|

MAIA1 marketed as EverCrisp® is undoubtedly one of the best eating apples recently released. However, for MAIA grower members, one complaint has been the difficulty to produce fruit with good color. Especially on young trees, fruit can tend to look more like older fuji strains. With more mature trees and reflective materials, growers have overcome some of the coloring deficiencies . With MAIA-Mitchell cv, growers can look forward to even better and earlier coloring EverCrisp®.

Availability of MAIA-Mitchell cv will be extremely limited for 2024, and if you would like trees for 2025 we suggest booking now. Budwood for all new releases is in short supply, so please contact our office (800.424.2765) as soon as possible to reserve trees for 2025.

From the press release of the Midwest Apple Improvement Association:

May 7, 2023

MN 33 cv, another open release from University of Minnesota

By |2023-05-09T19:39:16+00:00May 9th, 2023|Apple, Uncategorized, Varieties|

While no officially trademarked name has been announced, MN33 cv is now open to U.S. growers. This Honeycrisp x Zestar cross is advertised as having a crisp texture with a balanced flavor trending more toward sweet and tropical.


Honeycrisp x Minnewashta (Zestar®)


About a week after Honeycrisp

Fruit Characteristics

Size: Around 3 inches on average

Color: Blushed red

Pressure: 17-19 lbs at harvest

Storage: 5 months common storage

Growth Habit

The tree is medium vigor with spreading branches. Minnesota promotes it as a consistent annual bearer that is cold hardy to Zone 4. Fruit is somewhat tolerant to scab.


Smeralda: an early ripening Granny Smith alternative

By |2023-04-28T18:57:19+00:00April 28th, 2023|Apple, Varieties|

Granny Smith is one of the most popular apples in the world, but its late ripening window makes it difficult to grow for those in northern states. Italian apple breeder Consorzio Italiano Vivaisti (CIV) has introduced Smeralda which may prove to be a profitable alternative for those who cannot ripen Granny Smith.

Smeralda has a number of positive qualities. According to CIV, the fruit is “medium large with smooth, uniform, green color, without noticeable lenticels.” Ripening 30 days before Granny Smith, it’s high in sugar and acidity (Brix 13.5 and Acidity 8.2 g/l Malic Acid according to the CIV brochure). Smeralda is also resistant to scab and is an annual bearer.

If Smeralda would be a good fit for your farm, call our office (800.424.2765) and we can discuss availability.

Ripens: Early season, a week after Gala.

Color: Granny Smith Green

Growth Habit: Moderate vigor, compact with short branches.

Disease: Resistant to scab.

Storage: Excellent storage life, […]

The Next Generation of Galas

By |2023-04-28T18:54:23+00:00September 23rd, 2022|Apple|

Nurseries and variety marketing firms have introduced numerous new Gala strains in the last five years. These new Gala sports mutated from red strains that were already considered by growers to be substantial improvements. Use this reference sheet to help determine what Gala strain is the best fit for your planting plans.

Call Summit Tree Sales, Inc. if you have further questions or to place an order – 800.424.2765.

Early Ripening Galas

Wildfire Gala PP28,721

Discovered in Royal City, WA, Wildfire™ Gala is being offered under license agreement with Helios Nursery. This is the earliest maturing Gala available. The fruit harvests three weeks before standard Gala and finishes with a bright, cherry red color. Fruit size is small to medium, and the fruit shape is more round than standard Gala.

RedRidge™ Gala PPAF

A new introduction from […]

New *EARLY* variety from MAIA

By |2020-11-16T21:17:44+00:00November 16th, 2020|Apple, MAIA, Varieties|

As many growers know, many of the new and exciting varieties like Pink Lady® and Evercrisp® have ripened late. Many growers have been hesitant to plant these varieties until they know it will ripen in their area. Well there is good news, the Midwest Apple Improvement Association has introduced Sweet Maia® (MAIA-SM cv.), an early ripening cross between Honeycrisp x Winecrisp.

According to MAIA:

Sweet Maia® originated in a seedling lot distributed in 2001.  First fruiting in 2009. It stands out as an early season apple with fall apple qualities. Ripening 7-12 days before Gala, featuring 80-100% bright attractive red color, it has a long harvest window of 14-21 days.  Non-dropping, crispy, sweet. Good storage life of 90 days in common refrigerated storage.

It can be managed as a 1 or 2 pick harvest. Challenges include potential overcropping with attendant quality and size loss.  Some watercore is common. Left […]

Apple Variety Selection, from Growing Produce

By |2020-11-16T20:57:18+00:00November 10th, 2020|Apple, Varieties|

It’s no easy task selecting varieties for the orchard. Click the link below for a recent article from Growing Produce on the challenges that growers face:

Apple Variety Selection Tougher Than Ever for Growers

Don’t hesitate to call our office and let us guide you through the pros and cons of varieties and rootstocks.

RedRidge™ Gala (PPAF)

By |2020-09-23T20:07:21+00:00September 22nd, 2020|Apple, Varieties|

RedRidge™ Gala is a new introduction from International Plant Management that is an almost 100% red blush. It colors early, developing a deep red blush ahead of other gala strains. The real benefit of this gala may be that is ripens 4-5 days ahead of standard gala.

RedRidge™ Gala was discovered in Brookfield Gala planting and has performed consistently every year. This gala strain may be a good option for growers seeking to get harvest underway earlier.

RedRidge™ Gala on the far left in comparison with Brookfield and Gale Gala.

RedRidge™ Gala on the left showing starch test results against Brookfield and Gale Gala.

New Variety Release, MN 1980

By |2020-09-23T19:59:59+00:00September 1st, 2020|Apple, Varieties|

The University of Minnesota apple breading program has released MN 1980 (yet to be formally named). This variety is an open release, available to all U.S. commercial growers.

Photo courtesy of U of M

MN1980 ripens up to a week after Honeycrisp, and according to the U of M published info sheet, it has good fresh eating qualities and a long storage life (up to nine months in common storage). The flavor is promoted as pleasantly tart but balanced. If it ripens a week after Honeycrisp, this variety may fill a nice niche in a fresh market setting.

Trees are available on dwarfing rootstock for 2021. Please contact us if you are interested in booking MN1980.

See the full information from the University of Minnesota below:

MN1980 Apple Cultivar

Parentage: Honeycrisp x Liberty
Harvest: 1-7 days after Honeycrisp
Size: 2.8 – 3.2 inches (around an 88 size)
Skin Color: 75-90% […]

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