The Honeycrisp apple, also known in Europe as the 'Honeycrunch' apple, is one of the University of Minnesota's best apples. They are widely grown around the world. Millions have been sold to people who love the well-balanced sweet-tart taste, and explosively crisp, juicy texture.
Honeycrisp was named the Minnesota State Fruit in 2006. This honor was bestowed for several reasons. It is a great tasting apple. It is a very popular apple. And, it helped revive a declining apple growing industry and brought much needed revenue to small to medium sized, family-run orchards. Because of the broad appeal of Honeycrisp's flavor and texture, it sells at a premium price.
The Honeycrisp apple was even selected as one of the top 25 innovations in over a decade in the 2006 Better World Report. This report, by the Association of University Technology Managers, honors significant academic research and technology transfer that has changed our way of life. It honors developments that have made the world a better place.
- Explosively crisp & juicy - Two benefits truly set Honeycrisp apples apart from other apples. The first is their exceptionally crisp and juicy texture. Bite into the cream-colored flesh and the large cells explode with juice in your mouth, carrying a delightful, well-balanced, sub-acid and mildly aromatic flavor.
- Excellent storage life - Honeycrisp apples have amazing storage life. Outstanding flavor and texture can be maintained for at least seven months in refrigerated storage without atmosphere modification. Think of it. You can have a great apple to pick and then store, sell or savor for more than half the year!
- Consumers love Honeycrisp! - Millions of Honeycrisp apple trees have been sold. And their crops have sold at a premium price. For orchards, farm markets and retailers this is great because it improves profit margins. And consumers benefit too - they recognize that this great tasting apple is well worth the price. Demand where Honeycrisp is available is already high and more and more people are asking for Honeycrisp.
- A great mid-season apple - The harvest season for great tasting Honeycrisp apple ranges from September 15 to October 5 in east central Minnesota. The apples ripen evenly and hold well on the tree. Since they can be harvested over an extended period, orchards or consumers who like to pick their own can pick in mid- to late September and return again for another harvest.
- Honeycrisp is cold hardy - A long-standing objective of the University of Minnesota's apple breeding program is to develop winter-hardy cultivars with high fruit quality. Honeycrisp, hardy in USDA Zone 4 (-25 to -30°F), is a stellar example of achieving this objective.
Plantings in the United States, including New York, Michigan, Washington, Minnesota and Wisconsin, are producing very well. If you're interested in growing Honeycrisp in the U.S. you can contact your local nursery to see if they have trees available.
Honeycrisp is also being commercially grown in Nova Scotia, Quebec, Ontario, and British Columbia in Canada. In Europe, consumers know it as Honeycrunch®. And this great apple is being grown in New Zealand, South Africa and Australia. Please contact a licensed nursery (see lists below) to order trees if you are outside of the United States or reach out to the Office of Technology Commercialization for more information about growing Honeycrunch® outside the U.S.
- Keepsake; (MN447 x Northern Spy) x unknown
- Season: Begins approximately 1 week after McIntosh, approximately September 20 to October 5 in Minnesota.
- New York data indicates 2-week optimum harvest window based on spot picking best colored fruit at each harvest. Spot picking may help ripen remaining fruit. Heavy application of calcium (14 lbs/season) may advance maturity.
- Fruit size: Medium to large. 2-3/4" to 4" (7.0-10.2 cm). Oblate to round oblate. King fruit thinning may be useful to reduce size in some situations.
- Color: 60-90% dappled red over yellow in cool climates. May not color as well in warmer climates. Other factors critical for high color are good sun exposure and avoiding excess nitrogen.
- Texture: Explosively crisp! Coarse texture. Light and very juicy.
- Flavor: Well-balanced: sweet-tart. May be mild in warmer climates if harvested early or if trees are heavily cropped.
Storage life: Outstanding. Seven months in common storage at 37ºF. Ten or more months in CA storage. Storage can be affected by several disorders.
Bitter pit may occur, especially on trees in early bearing years. In the eastern U.S., multiple calcium sprays (8-12 lbs/acre/season) have been effective in reducing bitter pit incidence. Bitter pit is usually less common on fruit from older trees.
- Soft scald may also occur. The causes of this disorder are not fully understood and the severity can vary greatly among orchards or between different years from the same orchard. Research has indicated that soft scald can be reduced if fruit are held at warmer temperatures (50F) for 5 to 7 days after harvest before placing them in cold storage at 34-38° F. Honeycrisp fruit should not be stored at 32° F or lower.
- Culinary uses: Fresh eating, cooking, salad
- Region: Prefers cooler climates. McIntosh regions appear good. Possibly Jonagold regions in West.
- Hardiness zone: USDA Zone 4 (-25ºF to -30ºF) USDA Plant Hardiness Zone map
- Bloom: Mid- to late season.
- Growth habit: Somewhat spreading. Well suited to a central leader training system, although the leader may require staking or some fruit removal due to early bearing.
- Vigor: Low to moderate.
- Precocity: Good on dwarf rootstocks.
- Fruit adherence: Usually good but may show light to moderate dropping under some conditions. Stop drop sprays have been effective.
- Scab: Very resistant
- Fire Blight: Depends on age, rootstock and disease pressure. Vigorous young trees on susceptible rootstock (M9, M26) may show serious infection in severe fire blight years. Older trees under normal conditions show moderate to good resistance.
- Fly speck & sooty blotch: Susceptible
- Mildew: Susceptible
Honeycrunch® is a registered trademark of the University of Minnesota.