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Wealthys are medium/large apples that tend to be flat in shape. The compact trees grow fruits with bright red skin overlaid on a green-yellow background. The white-colored flesh is soft, crisp, and very juicy with interesting notes. The sharp and refreshing flavor tends toward vinous, and the best fruits have notes of honey, strawberries, and raspberries. The tree produces a many beautiful pink and white flowers in the spring, so is a good pollinator option for other apple trees. Wealthy trees are so prolific that they often produces fruit the first year, though they tend to produce biennially.
Wealthy apples are available in the fall.
Wealthy apples are an excellent American heirloom variety of Malus domestica with a beautiful appearance and great flavor. The first Wealthy was a Cherry Crabapple seedling. Offspring of the Wealthy include Epicure, Haralson, Laxton’s Fortune, and Red Sauce.
Apples such as the Wealthy are low in calories but very filling, thanks to their high fiber and carbohydrate content. The insoluble and soluble fiber (called pectin) in apples are good for the digestive system. Apples also contain potassium, which aids in heart health, and Vitamin C, good for the immune system.
Wealthy apples are good for both eating out of hand as well as cooking; they also make good drying and cider apples. Wealthy is particularly useful for pies, crisps, and sauces, paired with nuts, raisins, and classic apple spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg. If used for cooking, Wealthys can be picked a few weeks earlier than otherwise. Store in the refrigerator or other cool, dry location.
The name of this apple has nothing to do with its commercial or homegrown value. It was actually named after the first grower’s wife, Wealthy Gideon.
Northern U.S. climates can be more challenging for growing apples than other areas, but Wealthy is well-suited for harsh winters. Wealthy was first grown in Minnesota by Peter Gideon and introduced in the 1860s. It was one of the first American apples grown commercially and was once very popular. In England, it was popular in the 1920s and 1930s. Today, it is more often grown by home gardeners and by orchards interested in heirloom varieties.