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Fruit EdibleTrees

Malus domestica 'Reverend W. Wilks' (C)
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

apple 'Reverend W. Wilks'

A very early, cooking apple with pale green skin, mottled and striped with orange and red, and white, juicy flesh cooking to a light, quite sweet, pale yellow puree. Compact trees tend to biennial bear, but can produce a good crop in late summer, fruit storing into autumn. Named at the turn of the 20th century, in honour of the RHS Secretary, vicar of Shirley in south London and raiser of Shirley poppies

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Size
Ultimate height
2.5–4 metres
Time to ultimate height
10–20 years
Ultimate spread
2.5–4 metres
Growing conditions
Clay
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Pink White Green
Summer Green Green Orange Red
Autumn Green
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H6
Botanical details
Family
Rosaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Genus

Malus are small to medium-sized deciduous trees with showy flowers in spring and ornamental or edible fruit in autumn; some have good autumn foliage colour

Name status

Accepted

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How to grow

Cultivation

Prefers deep, fertile, moist but well-drained, neutral soil in a sunny, sheltered position. Will not thrive on very acid soils, shallow chalk soils or with shade for more than half the day. May require fruit thinning to improve fruit size and quality. See apple cultivation

Propagation

Propagate by chip budding in late summer, or grafting in mid-winter. Plants grown from pips are unlikely to resemble the parent

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Patio and container plants
  • Edible fruit
  • Wall side borders
Pruning

Prune according to chosen training method. See apple pruning

Pests

May be susceptible to aphids, including rosy apple aphid and woolly aphid, fruit tree red spider mite, codling moth and other caterpillars

Diseases

May be susceptible to apple canker, apple scab, blossom wilt, brown rot, fireblight, honey fungus and powdery mildews

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