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Charles Ross

Origin and History

Charles Ross was head gardener to Captain Carstairs of Welford Park in Newbury, Berkshire from 1860 until 1908. He crossed Peasgood’s Nonsuch and Cox’s Orange Pippin and selected various apples that resulted. The eponymous Charles Ross was his first selection, exhibited in 1890 and marketed in 1899 when it gained an RHS First Class Certificate. It is a medium to large dual-purpose apple.


Charles Ross is described by pomologist Rosie Sanders as 'A very heavy apple, ripening into golden yellow with deep orange spots and speckles and short stripes. It has a little

charles ross apple, habitat aid

russet at the base.' The skin is smooth and develops a greasy texture. The flesh is lightly aromatic, very sweet, firm and juicy.

Picking, Storing and Using

Charles Ross is excellent as a dessert apple and also holds its shape when cooked (provided it is fully ripe when picked), making it ideal for pies and flans. It is usually best picked in mid-September and will store until December, although it does tend to lose flavour. 

Growth, Flowering and Pollination

The tree is upright and spreading. It has reasonably good scab resistance and withstands late frosts well. It likes a more alkaline soil than most varieties and crops reliably, even on cold and windy sites. Charles Ross is self-fertile but does better with a pollination partner such as Ellison’s Orange, Dumelow’s Seedling or Newton Wonder.


(1) The Apple Book © Rosie Sanders, Frances Lincoln, 2010

Copyright © Karen Meadows 2018

welford park, newbury by Angus Kirk
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