Salt Spring Apple Co.
Our Apples

Our Top 25

Here they are: our premiere selection of apple varieties. We consider these to be the varieties most likely to consistently produce magnificent and memorable fruit in our Salt Spring Island orchard. Read more


Cider Kings

We definitely don't stop at 25 varieties. In fact, we consider these 29 traditional cider varieties (with a few crab-apples and a diminutive super-juicer thrown in) to be the secret to Real Cider. They're most certainly worth checking out. Read more


The Whole 333+

In a world blessed with thousands of apple varieties, not making our Top 25 or Cider Kings lists is hardly cause for embarrassment. Every one of these 333+ apples is a winner in our books. Read more

King of Tompkins County

Why you should be excited:

King of Tompkins County is the great U.S. heritage apple that inspired us to go into the organic apple growing business.

apple_KingofTompkinsCounty_small.JPGThe story of King of Tompkins County:

Known to many simply as 'King', we kind of like the folksy full name of this awesome classic apple. It's an old U.S. variety first discovered in New Jersey in 1750 and introduced to the marketplace way back in 1804.

King of Tompkins County is a large, smooth-skinned yellow apple with orange-red blush on a yellow background skin colour. While the colouring tends to vary widely from one apple to another, even on the same tree, almost all the King fruit I've seen is beautiful, as well as good-sized.

The flesh of a King of Tompkins County apple is yellowish, coarse, crisp, aromatic and tender. The flavour is subacid and highly appreciated. Many people bite into one and immediately say it tastes exactly as they remember a great apple tasting when they were a child. Yes, it's that good.

King is a reasonably good keeper and the tree is vigorous, productive and well-suited to our West Coast climate. In addition to its fame as a fresh-eating apple, King is also a wonderful cooker.

After all these accolades, you'll likely not be surprised to learn that it was a Salt Spring-grown King of Tompkins County apple that convinced us that raising this fruit in this place -- in a 3,000-plus tree serious kind of way -- is what we aspired to do.

King of Tompkins County Facts

Its origins:

Discovered in New Jersey, USA, 1750.

Flavour, aroma, texture:

Outstanding. Crisp, coarse, juicy flesh. Sweet, subacid, aromatic flavour.


Excellent, although variable, even on the same tree. Often large, with red stripes and flush on a yellow background skin colour.

When they’re available:

Late season (usually in mid-October).

Quality for fresh eating:

Unexcelled. Yum!

Quality for cooking:


Keeping ability:

Good (up to 2 months when kept refrigerated).

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Salt Spring Apple Company Ltd.

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