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Hudson's Golden Gem *

If your idea of a russet apple is small and round, meet Hudson's Golden Gem.

These conical apples are medium to medium-large and obviously ribbed.

The russetting, like that of other varieties, is a treat to look at: rusty, toasty brown and not entirely opaque, creating subtly shifting colors wonderfully variegated.

Green-brown lenticels, some with light specks in their centers (more russet?), provide further visual interest. Some samples have a bit of coppery blush. The firm fruit has a sweet smell of grass and yeast.

Hudson's flesh is firm but tender, coarse, pale yellow, and juicy. The texture is pear-like, though not melting, and the flavor suggest that of a Bosc.

The mild flavor favors sweet, with strong pear notes, a faint nutty quality, and a hint of vanilla. Its flesh oxidizes quickly.

This variety is very pleasant and easy to eat. Even for those with conservative tastes, Hudson would make a change of pace that is easy to appreciate.

The Golden Gem hales from Oregon in the 1930s.


  1. Nice to stumble upon your site and fine apple reviews and insights. As a new fan of russet apples, I just planted a Hudson's Golden Gem in my orchard and look forward to sharing my take on this and other varieties. Thanks.

  2. Tom has a blog about his farm on Vashon Island.

    I especially liked this post about his favorite apples of the year--really nice photos, Tom! Thanks for dropping by.

  3. We have had this apple on a grafted tree on the family farm for many years, only we didn't know what it was called! We've always called it a "pear-apple", and I've wondered if it was a cross between a pear and an apple of some sort. Thanks for the information! P.S. The farm is in Oregon, and just recently received "Century Farm" status, as my grandfather bought it in 1910.

    1. Greetings, HankGentry,
      I live fairly close to Tangent, OR, where the HGG apple was discovered and am wondering if you live anywhere near Corvallis/Tangent? I'm interested in sampling one of these 'gems' and maybe adding a branch/tree of this local find, if they are as good as folks say. Maybe we can trade...grapes, shiitakes, hickory nuts, etc.

  4. I am very happy with my Hudson's Golden Gem I grafted to an Esopus Spitz tree. It fruits fairly reliably, although I only had 3 apples survive this year, and one dropped early, and so wasn't properly ripened. But the one I just ate, which I kept on the tree as long as I dared and stored in the refrigerator two days, was heavenly. Pronounced pear flavor along with something else I couldn't name.


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