Fruit Variety Descriptions and Uses
Jelich Ranch Apple Varieties
Golden Delicious. Very delicious apple when ripened on the tree, not the flavorless apple you find in the grocery stores. Very fine eating apple, ripening in September.
Gravenstein. An early heirloom apple brought by Russian settlers to the North Coast of California. The juice and applesauce industries of Sebastopol were based on this apple. Striped, tart-sweet and a wonderful fragrance. Great cooking apple, and can be eaten fresh in early to mid August.
King David. An heirloom apple, originally from Arkansas. Used for hard cider. Beautiful bright red skin, good for eating fresh, ripens in October. The favorite of one of the Jelich grandchildren who grew up on the farm and worked in the fruit stand.
Newtown Pippin. An heirloom apple from England, with a rich flavor. This apple was planted on every available acre near Watsonville in the early 1900s, and gives Martinelli’s cider its delicious flavor. Great for juice, and delicious in November when ripens to red & yellow skin color.
Red Delicious. Originally a striped, sweet apple. Forget about the insipid, mushy red delicious you find in the grocery store! Jelich Ranch’s varieties are more closely related to the original ‘Standard Delicious’ variety, from which all Red Delicious are descended.
Jelich Ranch Pear Varieties
Bartlett. Classic canning pear, but excellent for eating fresh. Known in Europe as ‘Williams,’ very popular. Ripens early, in August. Flavorful, juicy, sweet.
Beurre Hardy. Old fashioned variety. When well grown, delicious. Some of the oldest trees on Jelich Ranch.
Comice. The highest quality eating pear commercially available in the U.S. Harry & David sell them as ‘Royal Riviera.’ Excellent flavor, creamy texture, very sweet.
Howell. A delightful pear, excellent for eating fresh. We sent a sample of this rare pear to the Pear Germ Repository in Oregon, because none of the local authorities could identify it. The closest identification they could make was Howell, a pear that is in their collection. Medium size, it ripens in September, and is juicy, sweet and flavorful.
Max Red Bartlett. A reddish variety of Bartlett.
Winter Nellis. Heirloom variety. Small, ugly pears, but very delicious for eating fresh. Chefs love them for cooking. Ripen in November.
Jelich Ranch Plum Varieties
Santa Rosa. Luther Burbank bred this classic purple Japanese plum. Very juicy and tasty, ripening around the 4th of July, wonderful aroma. Makes excellent jelly.
Casselman. A European plum with a delightful flavor, ripens 3 weeks after Santa Rosa. Great for eating fresh, very sweet, lacks the acidity around the pit and skin that Japanese plums have.
Jelich Ranch Apricot Varieties
Blenheim. Famous variety because of its intense flavor when ripe, considered the best by many. Requires a climate with a warm, dry spring, but will not tolerate the intense heat of the central valley. Santa Clara valley was the main area of production, because of the climate.
Other Jelich Ranch Fruits
Brown Turkey Figs. Two crops per year of sweet fruit, purple-brown on the outside, reddish on the inside. July & September.
Quince. A large, hard yellow fruit related to apples and pears. Used for jellies and desserts, particularly by Europeans and Mexicans. Ripens in September and October.
Plum – Newly Planted Varieties
Mariposa. A large, red variety with delicious flavor. Formerly a popular shipping variety, it’s been replaced by new varieties that stay hard longer, but don’t have the fine flavor.
Victoria. Old fashioned variety, popular in Great Britain, and remembered fondly by Brian Gardiner of America Fresh, a customer of Jelich Ranch, who is from Wales.
Peach – Newly Planted Varieties
Amber. A winner of taste tests. Yellow flesh, very sweet and delicious.
Redhaven. Another commercial variety that has fallen out of favor. Yellow skin with red blush, yellow flesh, delicious flavor.
Silver Logan. Very fuzzy variety, white flesh, delicious flavor.
Suncrest. Yellow skin, yellow flesh. David Masamoto’s favorite! He wrote “Epitaph of a Peach” about this variety. Commercial variety that’s fallen out of favor, replaced by deep red skinned modern varieties with the texture of tennis balls.
Nectarine – Newly Planted Varieties
Arctic Jay. White flesh, Sub-acid flavor, sweet.
Arctic Queen. White flesh, Sub-acid flavor, exceedingly sweet. Ripens 2-3 weeks after Arctic Jay.
Honeykist. Delicious yellow-flesh variety, ripens early August.
Royal Giant. Large, delicious yellow-flesh variety. Excellent flavor.
Cherry - Newly Planted Varieties
Bing. The standard by which commercial cherries are judged. Very sweet, flavorful, ripens early June.
Brooks. Pollinates Bing. Good quality red cherry, popular around Bakersfield, ripens 1 week ahead of Bing.
Persimmon - Newly Planted Varieties
Fuyu. Popular Japanese fruit, which you eat while firm, like an apple. NOT astringent. Gaining popularity in the U.S. Very sweet, red fruit.
Apples - Newly Planted Varieties
Fuji. A fantastic eating apple, which has become very popular. Bred in Japan, which is the source of many deliciously sweet varieties. Juicy and crisp, it ripens in October, and stores well for several months.
Hauer. Found growing in a hedgerow in Watsonville. Deep red, very white flesh, fine flavor. Matures in October.
‘Jelich.' A very late maturing apple, small but tasty. The fruit hangs on the tree till December, and is a great size for kids. New trees of this variety were custom propagated, and planted in the orchard in 2002. The grafting wood came from the mother tree near the tractor barn. We named it in honor of the family who grew the original tree!
Mutsu. Another fabulous sweet apple from Japan. Jelich Ranch used to have many Mutsu trees and market the fruit, but only 1 mature tree remains. Large, green skin, excellent texture and flavor. Ripens in September.
Northern Spy. An heirloom variety from back east, it was the most popular storage variety for many decades. It ripens late, and is very flavorful. Very high in vitamin C.
Orleans Reinette. Heirloom variety from 18th century France. Flat, green skin, some russet, very sprightly flavor.
Pink Pearl. Great for pink applesauce, and very popular at farmer’s markets. Ripens early, in August, and is always a surprise to bite into.
Sierra Beauty. Large, green & yellow with a red blush. Blocky shape. Ripens in September, and is a good keeper. From California!
Snow. A Canadian parent of the Macintosh apple (fruit, not computer). Medium size, white flesh, red skin, similar to Macintosh.
Sweet 16. A variety which resists apple scab, a problematic apple disease in the Central Coast. Large, bright red skin. Sweet-tart flavor.
Wealthy. A hardy apple from Minnesota that is also low-chill. White flesh sometimes has red streaks, flavor is sweet-tare, red skin.