Ate a Braeburn apple and recovered 6 seeds which I allowed to dry 3 days. I potted them this morning.
Braeburn was an accidental cross in a New Zealand orchard in the early 50s, its probable parents were Granny Smith and Lady Hamilton.
Never mind its unknown parentage, it is a top commercial apple today and has a robust flavor with a spicy hint. It is an all around apple but when cooked it retains its shape without losing much liquid. Great for pies and tarts.
My seeds are half Braeburn crossed with who knows what, but likely crabapple. If they sprout and later bear fruit, I will see and take a guess. And name them all!
The reason I want these seeds is because their spicy flavor with a dash of tart crabapple might make an excellent cider apple. Sweet or hard. Perhaps applesauce that is not bland. Apple cider vinegar should be good.
Even though commercial growers scare you with worries about growing applies from seed, if one parent is a crabapple, you might come up with a phenomenal cider apple. Braeburn is likely half Granny Smith, a common American sharp apple used in cider. Mix with Crabapple, a bittersharp apple also used for cidermaking but lacking sugar for good alcohol production, it is possible that Lady Hamilton may add just enough sugar to make these six seeds potentially good bittersharp apples for cider making. With higher sugar content.
That is why I bought Braeburn Apples at the grocery store… for the seeds.
During Prohibition thousands of acres of cider apple trees were destroyed and replaced with sweet fresh apple varieties. Hard cider is coming back in style, but we lack the varietals to meet demand for more complex hard ciders. These trees are being replanted but it takes years to get apples from orchards. It will sure take years for me to grow my little seeds! It is fun to contemplate the possibilities and folks up here in the mountains say apple is the only fruit that grows here, apples are what there is to play with.
These babies are a long term project. Our extra winter moisture will give them a good start come spring. If they survive New Mexico weather, they will start producing about the time my ultra dwarf trees are at the end of their short lives. They will have a deep taproot for water and wind stability. Each will have a different expression of their parent genes and will have some fruit variation. Apple wood is nice, too.
As an addition to local apple genes, not bad. As an addition to my circular economy and Food Forest, a bonus for bear, deer, chickens, me, and small mammals. As a deciduous tree, nice mulch to feed the soil microorganisms. Blooms feed the pollinators. Pretty. It’s all good.
I will plant apples near several big hedges of oak trees in hopes that they will provide food for the bear that tanks up on apples when oaks do not produce acorns. I hope they are spared deer depredation long enough to produce apples and get above deer range. Apples, they are welcome to.
If not this year, then next. I will add each year until they take.