Summer 2021 - important noticeStock shortages - please order as soon as possible to avoid disappointment. More>
Pippin Trees banner logoChoose from over 280 flowering cherries, crab apples, rowans and other ornamental trees.

John Downie

Malus

John Downie is one of the most popular crab-apples in the UK, featuring traditional white blossom and very attractive bright orange-red fruitlets, with a distinctive upside-down pear shape.

It is perhaps the definitive variety for making crab apple jelly, which will usually be a pale pink colour.

It grows with a more upright habit than most other crab-apple varieties, and will fit in a relatively small space.

John Downie crab-apple trees for sale

  • 11-year bare-root tree £27.95
    Large size (3m-5m after 10 years)
    Out of stock
    Alert me
  • 22-year pot-grown tree £41.00
    In a 7L pot
    Large size (3m-5m after 10 years)
    Out of stock
    Alert me
  • 32-year pot-grown tree £47.50
    In a 12L pot
    Large size (3m-5m after 10 years)
    Out of stock
    Alert me
Next deliveries

You can pre-order now for delivery from late September 2021 for pot grown trees (or early December for bare-root). You do not need to pay at this stage - just add items to the basket and checkout as usual.


How to grow

John Downie easy to grow, but somewhat prone to apple scab - although this does not affect the cooking quality of the fruit.

 

History

John Downie was raised in the 1870s by Edward Holmes, a nurseryman from Lichfield, England. He named it after his friend and fellow nurseryman John Downie.

John Downie characteristics

  • Gardening skillAverage
  • AwardsRHS AGM (former) 1999
  • Attractive featuresAttractive flowersAttractive fruit
  • Flower colourWhite
  • Leaf colourGreen
  • Fruit colourOrange / Red
  • Food usesJam / Jelly
  • Country of originUnited Kingdom
  • Annual cycleDeciduous

Similar varieties

  • See also Pink Glow
    Malus baccata
    Pink Glow
    Another good variety for making crab-apple jelly, Pink Glow ripens a bit earlier in the season.

What will it look like?

Illustrative example of a pot-grown tree of this variety as supplied. Approximate girth: 6/8cm. Trees should reach their mature height after about 10 or more years. We may also have 1-year bare-root trees of this variety - they are not shown here.

Malus John Downie crab apple tree

How to choose a crab-apple tree

We list more than 40 different crab-apple trees. Choosing can be difficult! See our article explaining the different characteristics of crab-apple trees which will help you narrow down the selection.