Ellison's Orange Apple Malus domestica 'Ellison's Orange' (D)

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Edible
‍🌱 Hard-care
apple 'Ellison's Orange'


The apple tree known as 'Ellison's Orange' is characterized by its attractive appearance. It has a sturdy main trunk from which a network of spreading branches grows, forming a naturally beautiful shape. The bark on the mature trunk and branches is typically rough and a mix of grays and browns, adding a textured appearance. During the springtime, the tree becomes a spectacular sight when it's covered with blossoms. The flowers are showy with petals that can range from pure white to soft pink. As the season progresses, these flowers give way to the development of the fruit. The apples that 'Ellison's Orange' produces are particularly noticeable for their rich coloring and are a key feature in identifying this variety. The skin of the fruit often displays a warm mix of reds flushed over a yellow-green base, which can be dotted with lenticels. These apples also have a distinctive shape, generally round with some ribbing, a common characteristic of this type of fruit. The leaves of 'Ellison's Orange' are also quite typical of apple trees, with a simple ovate shape and serrated edges. They are a lush green, providing a contrast against the bark and a backdrop to the bright fruit and blossoms. These leaves turn to shades of yellow and brown during the fall before shedding for the winter. Overall, 'Ellison's Orange' is primarily known and grown for its fruit, which combines a pleasing appearance with a reputedly excellent flavor. The beauty of this tree throughout the seasons—from the floral display in the spring, the verdant foliage in the summer, to the laden branches with attractive apples in the late summer and fall—makes it a cherished variety for both ornamental and practical purposes in gardens.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Ellison's Orange Apple

    • Common names

      Malus domestica 'Ellison's Orange'

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      The most common common name for Malus domestica 'Ellison's Orange' is apple. Generally, the flesh of the apple fruit is not toxic to humans and is widely consumed around the world; however, the seeds contain amygdalin, a compound that can release cyanide when digested. In large quantities, cyanide can be toxic, but the small amounts present in apple seeds typically are not enough to cause harm to humans. It would require consuming an extremely large number of seeds to reach a toxic level. If consumed in significant amounts, symptoms of poisoning might include headache, dizziness, confusion, shortness of breath, and potentially can lead to cyanide poisoning, which in the worst cases can be fatal. It is important to note that poisoning from apple seeds is highly uncommon and the fruit's flesh is safe to eat.

    • To pets

      The most common common name for Malus domestica 'Ellison's Orange' is apple. The flesh of the apple fruit is generally safe for pets to eat in moderate amounts. However, as with humans, the seeds contain amygdalin, which can release cyanide when digested. While pets are less likely to consume large quantities of apple seeds, it is still best to avoid giving them to pets to prevent any risk of cyanide poisoning. If a pet ingests a significant amount of apple seeds, they might exhibit symptoms such as difficulty breathing, panting, dilated pupils, red mucous membranes, and shock. It's always a good practice to consult a veterinarian if you suspect your pet has ingested a potentially toxic substance.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      12-15 feet (3.6-4.5 meters)

    • Spread

      12-15 feet (3.6-4.5 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Provides fruit: The most obvious benefit is that it yields apples which can be eaten fresh, cooked, or used in a variety of culinary dishes.
    • Aesthetic value: With its blossoms in the spring and fruits in the late summer and autumn, it adds beauty to gardens and landscapes.
    • Pollinator support: The flowers of the apple tree provide nectar and pollen for bees and other pollinators, supporting local ecosystems.
    • Shade and cooling: Apple trees can provide shade in gardens and outdoor spaces, helping to reduce local temperatures and provide relief on hot days.
    • Carbon sequestration: Like all trees, apple trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, helping to mitigate the effects of climate change.
    • Soil improvement: The leaf litter and root system of apple trees contribute to soil health and structure.
    • Habitat for wildlife: The trees can offer shelter and food for various birds and small mammals.
    • Educational opportunities: Growing apple trees can be used as a tool for teaching about plant biology, horticulture, and the environment.
    • Cultural significance: Many cultures celebrate the apple harvest with festivals and customs, contributing to community heritage and traditions.
    • Local food production: Growing apple trees can reduce the carbon footprint associated with transporting food and support local food sovereignty.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    • This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • As a natural dye: The skin of apples, including Ellison's Orange, can be used to produce a range of natural dyes for fabrics or crafts, offering hues from yellow to brown depending on the mordant used.
    • In art projects: Thinly sliced or dried apple pieces from Ellison's Orange apples can be used in art projects for creating collages or as natural decorative elements.
    • As a pH indicator: Apple skins can be used as a rudimentary pH indicator, changing color in the presence of various substances.
    • For educational activities: Ellison's Orange apples can be used in classroom settings for science experiments such as the classic apple oxidation experiment to demonstrate chemical reactions with air.
    • In animal feed: Unwanted or excess Ellison's Orange apples can be used as a supplement in feed for livestock, such as pigs and horses, who enjoy the fruit.
    • For natural cleaning: Apple cider vinegar made from Ellison's Orange apples can be used as a natural cleaning agent due to its acidity.
    • As a deodorizer: When boiled, the fruits can help neutralize unpleasant odors in households, leaving a pleasant apple aroma.
    • Crafting apple stamps: Halved apples can be dipped in paint to create stamps for decorating paper or fabric.
    • In composting: Apple scraps, including those from Ellison's Orange, are a good addition to compost piles as they add nitrogen and help break down organic matter.
    • For photography: Apples can be used as subjects or props in still life photography to study composition, light, and shadow techniques.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The apple tree is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The apple tree is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Love and Temptation: The apple, as exemplified by Ellison's Orange, is often associated with love, temptation, and desire, stemming from its role in the biblical story of Adam and Eve.
    • Knowledge and Wisdom: Historically, apples have symbolized knowledge and wisdom, as illustrated in various mythologies where apples are viewed as fruits that impart enlightenment or understanding.
    • Fertility and Abundance: With its generous yield of fruit, the Ellison's Orange apple tree may represent fertility and abundance, symbolizing plentifulness and prosperity.
    • Eternal Youth: Derived from myths of enchanted apple orchards offering immortality, the apple can symbolize eternal youth and vitality.
    • Peace and Harmony: An apple tree, including Ellison's Orange, can signify peace and harmony due to the tranquility often found in apple orchards and the fruit's common use as a peace offering.

Every 7-10 days
2500 - 10000 Lux
Not needed
Late winter
As needed
  • water dropWater

    The Ellison's Orange apple tree should be watered deeply once a week during the growing season, providing about 1 to 2 inches of water, which is approximately 15 to 30 gallons depending on tree size and soil type. During periods of drought or extreme heat, increase watering frequency to twice a week. In the winter or non-growing season, reduce watering to when the soil is dry several inches down. Proper mulching around the base can help retain soil moisture.

  • sunLight

    The Ellison's Orange apple tree thrives in full sunshine. Planting it in a location where it receives at least six hours of direct sunlight daily will ensure vigorous growth and a good harvest. Avoid spots that are prone to heavy shade or that receive only partial sunlight.

  • thermometerTemperature

    The Ellison's Orange apple tree can tolerate a range of temperatures, but it grows best where the average temperature is between 32°F and 90°F. It is hardy and can survive winter temperatures down to -20°F, but prolonged exposure to temperatures above 95°F can stress the tree.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune your Ellison's Orange apple tree in late winter or early spring before new growth starts. This promotes healthy growth, allows for better air circulation, and helps to increase fruit production. Remove any dead or diseased branches, thin out crowded areas, and shape the tree as desired. Pruning should be done annually for best results.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    The best soil mix for an apple tree like 'Ellison's Orange' is well-draining loamy soil, with a blend of compost, sand, and peat to provide nutrients. The soil pH should be slightly acidic to neutral, between 6.0 and 7.0.

  • plantRepotting

    Apple trees like 'Ellison's Orange' are typically planted in the ground rather than repotted. If grown in containers, young trees may be repotted every 2-3 years until they are planted out.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Apple trees such as 'Ellison's Orange' prefer outdoor conditions and generally tolerate the ambient humidity without needing special attention.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Unlikely to thrive indoors due to size and lighting needs.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in a sunny spot, protect from strong winds, provides space to grow.

    • Hardiness zone

      5-8 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    'Ellison's Orange' apple tree (D) begins its life cycle from a seed, requiring stratification—a period of cold to break dormancy—before germination can occur in spring. After sprouting, the seedling grows into a young sapling, developing a root system and foliage as it matures into a fruit-bearing tree, a process that can take several years. Once mature, typically in mid to late spring, the tree flowers, attracting pollinators for fertilization. Following successful pollination, fruits develop and grow throughout the summer, with 'Ellison's Orange' apples typically ripening in late summer to early fall. After harvesting, the tree enters a period of dormancy during the winter months to conserve energy. This cycle repeats annually, with the tree potentially living and bearing fruit for decades under proper care and cultivation.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Late winter

    • The most popular method for propagating Ellison's Orange apple trees, as with many apple varieties, is by grafting. This process is typically carried out in late winter or early spring before active growth begins. Scion wood, which is a twig with several buds from the Ellison's Orange apple tree, is cut while the tree is still dormant. The scion is then carefully grafted onto a rootstock that has been selected for its ability to support the tree and control its size. The most common type of grafting used is the whip graft, wherein a diagonal cut is made on both the scion and the rootstock, and the two cut surfaces are joined. The graft union is then bound with grafting tape and sealed with grafting wax or a similar sealant to prevent drying out, and to protect the joint from infection and weather extremes. The process requires skill and attention to ensure that the vascular tissues align properly, enabling the scion to unite and grow with the rootstock. Grafting not only perpetuates the desirable characteristics of Ellison's Orange but also allows the cultivar to benefit from the disease resistance and hardiness of the selected rootstock.