Golden Delicious

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This article is about the apple cultivar. For the album by Mike Doughty, see Golden Delicious (album).
Golden Delicious
Golden delicious apple.jpg
Hybrid parentage
Parents unknown, theorized to be
'Golden Reinette' × 'Grimes Golden'
Cultivar 'Golden Delicious'
Origin Clay County, West Virginia, United States, 1905

The Golden Delicious is a cultivar of apple with a yellow color, not closely related to the Red Delicious apple.[1] According to the US Apple Association website it is one of the 15 most popular apple cultivars in the United States.[2]

apples golden delicious

Appearance and flavor[edit]

Golden Delicious is a large, yellowish-green skinned cultivar and very sweet to the taste. It is prone to bruising and shriveling, so it needs careful handling and storage. It is a favorite for salads, apple sauce, and apple butter.


Golden Delicious apples.

This cultivar is a chance seedling possibly a hybrid of Grimes Golden[3][4] and Golden Reinette.[5] The original tree was found on the Mullins' family farm in Clay County, West Virginia, United States and was locally known as Mullin's Yellow Seedling and Annit apple. Anderson Mullins sold the tree and propagation rights to Stark Brothers Nurseries, which first marketed it as a companion of their Red Delicious in 1914.[6]

In 2010, an Italian-led consortium announced they had decoded the complete genome of the Golden delicious apple.[7] It had the highest number of genes (57,000) of any plant genome studied to date.

Official status[edit]

The Golden Delicious was designated the official state fruit of West Virginia by a Senate resolution on February 20, 1995.[8] Clay County has hosted an annual Golden Delicious Festival since 1972.


Golden Delicious
Golden Delicious Apple Seed

Harvested from autumn through winter.

Other West Virginia apples[edit]

West Virginia is the originator of many vegetable and fruit crops, including the apples Grimes Golden, and the Guyandotte, which is believed extinct.

Descendent cultivars[edit]


  1. ^ Dominique A.M. Noiton and Peter A. Alspach (September 1996) "Founding Clones, Inbreeding, Coancestry, and Status Number of Modern Apple Cultivars", Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science 121:773-782 [1]
  2. ^ Apple varieties by US Apple Association
  3. ^ "Dunbar Man 'Discoverer' of Golden Delicious Apple". Charleston Daily Mail. October 18, 1962. Retrieved 2008-07-27. He is J. M. Mullins, now a man in his 87th year and living in Dunbar, though he spent his lifetime until recent years in Clay County. 
  4. ^ (West Virginia Div. of Culture and History)
  5. ^ Mass, V. 1970. Golden Delicious. pp. 69-85. In North American apples: varieties, rootstocks, outlook. Michigan State Univ. Press, East Lansing.
  6. ^ Higgins, Adrian (August 5, 2005). "Why the Red Delicious No Longer Is. Decades of Makeovers Alter Apple to Its Core.". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2008-07-27. When Stark's successors, in a similar stunt, found and named the Golden Delicious growing in West Virginia in 1914, the Delicious became Red Delicious. 
  7. ^ An Italian-led international research consortium decodes the apple genome AlphaGallileo August 29, 2010, Retrieved August 29, 2010
  8. ^ Golden Delicious: State Fruit of West Virginia
  9. ^
  10. ^ Pink Lady v the British apple, BBC News, 21 October 2013 
  11. ^
  12. ^

External links[edit]