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Also called Mortgage Lifter apple

One of the first commercially popular apple varieties! A dependable producer, this tree bears medium-size fruit that is firm and delicately aromatic. The skin is yellow with splashes of bright red. The fruit keeps well and is used for fresh eating, baking, and sauce making. Antique variety, originates from the United States, circa 1800s. Cold-hardy. Ripens in late September. Best pollinators: Granny Smith, Stark® Jon-A-Red® Jonathan or Starkrimson® Red Delicious.


Bloom Color Pink, Red, White
Fruit Color Red
Fruit Size Medium - Large
Pollination Pollinator Needed
Ripens/Harvest Late September-early October
Shade/Sun Full Sun
Soil Composition Loamy
Soil Moisture Well Drained
Soil pH Level 6.0 - 7.0
Taste Mildly Subacid
Texture Firm, Coarse
Years to Bear 2 - 5
Zone Range 3 - 7

Zone Compatibility

This Variety's Zone Range 3 - 7
My Hardiness Zone ?
The USDA hardiness zones offer a guide to varieties that will grow well in certain climates. Each zone corresponds to the minimum winter temperatures experienced in a given area. Make sure that your hardiness zone lies within the zone compatability range of this variety before ordering.

Size & Spacing

Mature Size

When your tree matures, it will be approximately 12 - 15' tall x 12 - 15' wide.

Recommended Spacing

We recommend spacing these trees 12 - 15' apart to ensure room for growth.

Recommended Pollinators

This variety requires another one for adequate pollination.

Cross-pollination by a different variety is key to its growing and bearing success. Our experts recommend planting one of the following within 50' for optimum pollination.

Related Assortments

This item is also available in this money saving assortment.

We bundle many of our popular products in assortments with other items that compliment each other. Plus, when you purchase an assortment, you save money compared to buying each item individually!

Tools & Supplies

Having the proper tools and supplies when growing your own can make the difference between a good harvest and a great harvest! Here's a list that our experts recommend for this variety.

Planting & Care

Learn all about how to grow apple trees in The Growing Guide. An entire section of our website dedicated to your growing success.

Shipping Information

Estimated Delivery Date

You don't pay until it ships.

We work hard to make sure that your order arrives at the ideal time for planting in your location. That's why we only ship living products during certain times of the year. Order now and your credit card won't be charged until your climate is suitable for planting success and your order is shipped.

Our Promise of Satisfaction

1 Year Warranty

Every order comes with our promise of satisfaction. If you aren't completely satisfied with your order, let us know within one year for a free one-time replacement or refund.


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Questions & Answers

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Browse 4 questions Browse 4 questions and 22 answers
Why did you choose this?
Stark Bro's Store
Because this is the apple my aunt had on her farm & my Dad would get apples from her to be canned, every yr. Good pie apple. Doesn't cook up to applesauce.
Beverly D on Jun 1, 2017
Liked the idea of the old heirloom tree
CARLIE F on Sep 17, 2016
Because this is the apple my aunt had on her farm & my Dad would get apples from her to be canned, every yr. Good pie apple. Doesn't cook up to applesauce.
Beverly D on Jun 1, 2017
One of my Daddy's favorite - Virginia farmer
JADA U on Feb 18, 2017
Liked the idea of the old heirloom tree
CARLIE F on Sep 17, 2016
I love heirloom vegtables and plants....going to try this apple tree!
Jeri R on Sep 6, 2016
Antique variety
Christopher D on Jun 20, 2016
Good for fresh eating, and heirloom variety.
DAVID S on Jun 5, 2016
Love the flavor of this great apple.
KATHRYN W on Jun 2, 2016
Climate zone compatibility 3A
Chris Y on Apr 27, 2016
One of my Daddy's favorite - Virginia farmer
JADA U on Feb 18, 2017
I love heirloom vegtables and plants....going to try this apple tree!
Jeri R on Sep 6, 2016
I understand the Ben Davis is a rare apple. Where did you find the genetics?
Michele on Jan 31, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Re: the origin ... this is from "A Life of Apples": Although the origin of the Ben Davis is somewhat murky, the most commonly accepted history is that its story began in Kentucky in the year 1799. That year, William Davis and John Hills left Virgina for Kentucky and settled near Davis' brother, Cpt. Ben Davis in Berry's Lick, Kentucky. Shortly after, Hills traveled back east to either Virginia or Carolina and returned with some young apple seedlings. Some of these were planted on the land of Cpt. Ben Davis and root shoots from one of these trees was later used to plant a small orchard. The apples in this orchard began to draw attention and as they gained recognition as a noteworthy variety, suckers from the original Davis orchard were planted around Kentucky and Tennessee. The apple found its way further north when the Hill Family moved to Illinois, taking trees with them to plant at their new home. By 1865 millions of Ben Davis trees could be found throughout the United States, especially in its southern reaches. By 1893, Stark Bro's was looking for something to replace it because it just plain didn't taste that great, despite its cold-hardiness and keeping ability, so we solicited samples for an International New Fruit Fair and discovered the Red Delicious apple. The rest, they say, is history. :-)

Customer Reviews

4.8 / 5.0
9 Reviews
5 Stars
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1 Star
Trees for Alaska.
Growing great the first 1year. Living on Kodiak island. We don't get a super harsh winter. But so far so good.
June 16, 2016
over 2 years ago
Very prolific growth on Ben Davis
Of all the trees I have purchased from Stark's, both Ben Davis trees have won the race in creating new growth the most quickly. Other trees have bloomed, but these little guys just shot for the moon! I anticipate apples on them in a year or two.
May 2, 2017
1 year ago
Ben Davis Apple
The Ben Davis is a favorite of mine due to its heritage as an all purpose apple that served many farm families well.
July 13, 2017
1 year ago
Hreat quality.
Rowing over head high in their first summer. Looking forward to fruit soon.
June 11, 2017
1 year ago
Second year for bare root tree
I received my bare root tree early in the summer of 2015. It is now thriving and 7 to 8 feet tall. I will have my first apples (3) this fall and can't wait to try them.
August 14, 2016
over 2 years ago
Growing faster than Gala and Red Delicious
Planted two semi-dwarf, along with a Gala and a Red Delicious. They were all the same size when planted, but the Ben Davis are crushing the other two as far as growth - way way bigger in their second year of growing, and they are all in similar spots as far as light, soil, etc. I'm hoping to get the first (small) crop of apples starting next year.
August 23, 2016
Ben Davis Apple Tree
Tree arrived in great shape. I planted it next to a gaia apple tree and it is blooming and doing great.
Thanks! Great tree and product.
June 14, 2016
over 2 years ago
time will tell
so far, so good. but always have had to fight deer and rabbits.
May 16, 2016
over 3 years ago
Ben Davis Apple
I planted the Ben Davis Apple tree last season. It bloomed this spring and has about 3 dozen apples on it. It appears to be very healthy so far.
May 8, 2016
over 3 years ago
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