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Bardsey apple trees

Malus domestica
Bardsey is listed in the RHS Plants for Pollinators
  • Picking season: Mid
  • Self-fertility: Not self-fertile
  • Flowering group: 2
A hardy disease-resistant apple, discovered growing on an island off the west coast of Wales.
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Bardsey apple trees for sale


All pot-grown trees are suitable for planting out in the garden, some are suitable for growing in containers.

  • PG12-year bush-trained 12L pot-grown tree M26 rootstock £56.50
    Medium tree (2m-3m after 10 years)
  • PG22-year bush-trained 12L pot-grown tree MM106 rootstock £56.50
    Large tree (3m-5m after 10 years)


  • BR11-year bare-root tree M26 rootstock £34.95
    Medium tree (2m-3m after 10 years)
  • BR21-year bare-root tree MM106 rootstock £34.95
    Large tree (3m-5m after 10 years)
  • BR32-year bush-trained bare-root tree MM106 rootstock £43.00
    Large tree (3m-5m after 10 years)

You can pre-order now, deliveries start in September.

Delivery charges

Delivery for a single tree starts at £9.95. It is calculated when you add trees to your basket, based on your postcode.

The Bardsey apple was named after the island of Bardsey, off the west coast of Wales, where this variety was first discovered in 1998. The unique location of Bardsey has made the island a place of pilgrimage and legend since ancient times, and the discovery of an apparently new apple variety on the island therefore received widespread press coverage at the time.

Not only is Bardsey a rather pretty apple, it is also very disease-resistant. It makes a good garden apple variety, particularly for the more challenging climates of the west of the UK.

Bardsey apples are similar to the well-known James Grieve in many respects, although there is no known connection between them. Like James Grieve they have a mild sweet flavour with some acidity, and a fairly crisp texture. They ripen in late August / early September. They are pleasant for eating fresh, and can also be juiced, and they will cook down to a sweet puree.

How to grow

Bardsey is an island off the west coast of Wales. Although considered a bit drier than other parts of Wales it is still essentially a mild, wet and windy climate, which favours many of the diseases to which apples are prone, particularly scab. To survive in this climate the Bardsey apple appears to have evolved very good disease resistance. It is therefore a useful variety to try in other damp mild climates such as the north-west and north coasts of Scotland, parts of Cumbria, and Devon and Cornwall, as well as western Wales.

The tree is known to be very hardy, but there is little information about the frost-resistance of its blossom, and freezing temperatures are relatively rare on the island. However anecdotal evidence from growers outside the UK suggests it is also tolerant of sub-zero winter temperatures, as well as summer heat and drought stress.

Bardsey appears to have a partial tip-bearing tendency, but is nevertheless suitable for training in most forms.

Advice on fruit tree pollination.


The original Bardsey tree was found growing wild on the island of Bardsey in 1998. It was subsequently popularised by local nurseryman Ian Sturrock, and identified as a unique new variety by experts at the UK National Fruit Collection.

It is sometimes also known as Merlin's apple, since the legendary wizard is said to be buried on the island - although many other sites also make this claim.

More information about the discovery of this variety and its cultivation can be found on the Bardsey website.

Bardsey characteristics


  • Gardening skillBeginner
  • Self-fertilityNot self-fertile
  • Flowering group2
  • Climate suitabilityTemperate climatesMild damp climates


  • Picking seasonMid
  • Keeping (of fruit)2-3 weeks
  • Food usesEating freshCulinaryJuice


  • Disease resistanceGood


  • Country of originUnited Kingdom
  • Period of origin1950 - 1999
  • Blossom colourPink - light
  • Fruit colourOrange / Red