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Baldwin

Baldwin
July 09, 2021 03:56AM
We have 70 tree neglected old orchard ~100 years old with mostly Baldwin ... we are trying to deal with round headed apple tree borer and apple maggot (I think) on the fruit. Zone 4-5 we have owned this place just 5 years and have yet to get a single bushel of good apples. We have used a Holistic spray schedule for the past 4 years. And have been adding straw and sheep manure around the trees for the last 2 years. Had trees heavily pruned twice to bring down the very overgrown height and rid them of diseased and broken limbs and Brown Tail moth.
1. Are Baldwin good for anything?
2. Any Treatment for maggot so we can get usable apples?

Barbara , central Maine
Re: Baldwin
July 09, 2021 04:27PM
Cider makers can certainly weigh in on the merits of Baldwin. I have but one tree and it's crop is practically reserved by customers who want this apple in their holiday pies.

Maggot fly shouldn't necessarily be a problem most years in a late season variety. Those dynamics are shifting, of course. I suggest you read the Spring 2019 issue of Community Orchardist, Barbara, and then any AMF-focused conversations continue in the Bug-by-Bug category. There's already a post on Burgeoning Apple Maggot Issues with good grower input. A new post in that category on late season inroads of AMF would certainly be welcome.

Now let's get back to the merits of this venerable apple...

Lost Nation Orchard
Zone 4b in New Hampshire
Re: Baldwin
July 09, 2021 05:37PM
Baldwin was "the" New England apple until about 1934 when the big freeze came through and killed wide swaths of orchards. By then varieties such as Red Delicious and McIntosh had become popular and this [the freeze] was a good reason for growers to switch. I think it makes a good cider apple, but its real value is for general processing. Baldwin was prized by processors because of its keeping and processing qualities. Its bears really well in its on years, but it can be biennial as hell if overcropped. Otherwise, its a fairly easy apple to grow with no major issues other than biennialism.

Mike Biltonen, Know Your Roots
Zone 5b in New York
Re: Baldwin
February 16, 2022 09:44PM
Hi Barbara,
We're in Maine too and our customers love Baldwin. We find it a great all-purpose apple and it stores very well. It does need to be picked at the right time though. It's incredible how letting it go even a week longer on the tree greatly improves flavor. It's one of the last varieties we pick here besides Black Oxford.
Good Luck!

5 Star Nursery and Orchard
Zone 5, Brooklin, ME
Re: Baldwin
February 17, 2022 02:01PM
“The Orchard; A Memoir,” by Adele Crockett Robinson is an inspiring saga I would recommend to anyone with the fate of 100 year old Baldwins in their hands. It might not teach you much about how exactly to confront your pest problems, but could give you a bit of fuel to keep moving on, with some lessons to be gleaned from what could go wrong if you rely on one crop for your livelihood.
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