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Old Southern Apples: A Comprehensive History And Description Of Varieties For Collectors, Growers, And Fruit Enthusiasts, 2nd Edition

A book that became an instant classic when it first appeared in 1995, Old Southern Apples is an indispensable reference for fruit lovers everywhere, especially those who live in the southern United States. Out of print for several years, this newly revised and expanded edition now features descriptions of some 1,800 apple varieties that either originated in the South or were widely grown there before 1928. Author Lee Calhoun is one of the foremost figures in apple conservation in America. This masterwork reflects his knowledge and personal experience over more than thirty years, as he sought out and grew hundreds of classic apples, including both legendary varieties (like Nickajack and Magnum Bonum) and little-known ones (like Buff and Cullasaga). Representing our common orchard heritage, many of these apples are today at risk of disappearing from our national table. Illustrated with more than 120 color images of classic apples from the National Agricultural Library’s collection of watercolor paintings, Old Southern Apples is a fascinating and beautiful reference and gift book. In addition to A-to-Z descriptions of apple varieties, both extant and extinct, Calhoun provides a brief history of apple culture in the South, and includes practical information on growing apples and on their traditional uses.

Hardcover: 384 pages

Publisher: Chelsea Green Publishing; Revised and expanded second edition edition (January 20, 2011)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1603582940

ISBN-13: 978-1603582940

Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 1.3 x 11 inches

Shipping Weight: 3.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)

Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)

Best Sellers Rank: #612,250 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #110 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > By Region > South #205 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > Fruit #483 in Books > Reference > Encyclopedias & Subject Guides > Gardening

This is a lovely and satisfying book: knowing the history of our old apples is priceless, so I'm grateful for Mr. Calhoun's assiduous efforts. The inclusion of the rare Department of Agriculture watercolors of many of the older varieties makes the book a must-have for those who value beautiful botanical art. Mr. Calhoun dedicates the work to his beloved wife, Edith, who was his companion in research travels as, apparently, in all other things, and who, as he says poignantly, lived long enough to hold the revised version in her hands. I am so sorry for his loss, and so grateful that we nonetheless have this, his and Edith's gift to all of us.

This is a very thorough work on old apples grown in the south. The first four chapters provide some information on apple cultivation history and uses. The remaining chapters are an encyclopedic listing of existing and (believed) extinct southern apples. As the author notes, it's not a book you can turn to in order to easily identify the apple variety growing on an old homestead, unless you have some idea of possible names: there are a lot of tart red apples that ripen in September (for example). However, for reference purposes it's invaluable, and it is also very useful if you are planning to plant some heritage apple trees and want to learn about their characteristics--flavor, form, distribution, ripening date, and in some cases, disease resistance. The new edition has a large number of color illustrations (it's interesting that the USDA had artists who painted apples way back when); these depict both existing and extinct varieties. It's well worth the full sticker price, and is a bargain at anything less.

Best book out there on Heritage apples. It goes beyond merely discussing the history of apple varieties to include data on fruit use and configuration, tree growth habit, disease resistance, etc. I refer to this book constantly and my apple loving friends are using it to plan home orchards here in Virginia.

The book is full of wonderful information about heirloom apples. Terrific illustrations add to the enjoyment. Old Southern Apples is helpful to anyone who wants to reminisce about the trees and apples remembered from a childhood on the farm. But if you still own that farm, you'll also find detailed evaluations of available grafted varieties to begin your own heirloom orchard for your children to enjoy. A treasure of a book!

Have wanted this book for a while. Got it for Xmas and am very pleased with it. Very informative about all the heirloom varieties of apples that still exist. A must have for all the "apple freaks" out there. Expect to be reading and rereading it for a long time.

Wow! You would never know the thousands of varieties of apples available and how production of small orchards really made up the South. If you are a history buff (not even into apples) you will reallt enjoy this book.

This is a great reference if you are interested in old varieties of apples. A definitive publication on all old apple varieties will probably never be written due to the genetic traits of the Malus genera. But this is the closest you are going to come to a definitive work in this day and age. The author has done a remarkable study!

It served its purpose for me but I was only interested in the contacts. The author did his homework and should be commended but reading hundreds of reviews was tough on this country boy. I am keeping this book as a reference on my shelf.

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