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Deep crimson, almost-black fruit! Compact, upright tree yields fruit on spurs all down the limbs. Firm and crisp apples are perfect for baking and apple butter. Juices well, adding complex notes to homemade cider. Flavor improves after 30 days in the refrigerator. Originates from Long Creek, South Carolina in 1983. Keeps for up to eight months in proper storage. Cold-hardy. Some resistance to scab and fire blight; very resistant to rust. Ripens in October. Best organic pollinators: Royal Empire™ or Whitney Crabapple. Best non-organic pollinators: Stark® Jon-A-Red® Jonathan, Starkspur® Golden Delicious, or Starkspur® Red Rome Beauty. (Lonacre cv.)


Bloom Color White
Bloom Time Mid - Late
Chill Hours 800 - 1500
Fruit Color Red
Fruit Size Medium - Large
Ripens/Harvest October
Shade/Sun Full Sun
Soil Composition Loamy
Soil Moisture Well Drained
Soil pH Level 6.0 - 7.0
Taste Tart
Texture Very Firm
Years to Bear 2 - 5
Zone Range 4 - 8

Zone Compatibility

This Variety's Zone Range 4 - 8
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

The mature size of this variety depends on the version you choose to plant:
Standard 18 - 20' tall x 18 - 20' wide
Semi-Dwarf 12 - 15' tall x 12 - 15' wide
Dwarf 8 - 10' tall x 8 - 10' wide

Recommended Spacing

The space needed for this variety to grow depends on the size you plant:
Standard 18 - 20'
Semi-Dwarf 12 - 15'
Dwarf 8 - 10'


This variety requires another one for adequate pollination.

Cross-pollination by a different variety is key to its growing and bearing success. Plant one of these varieties within 50' for best pollination.

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

Arrives when it's time to plant

Your success is our priority. We work hard to make sure that your order arrives at the ideal time for planting in your location based on your local climate conditions.

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.


We've 'tagged' this item with specific keywords that help you find other products that share features or characteristics with this one. Select a tag below to view all the items that have that particular trait.

Questions & Answers

Start typing your question and we'll check if it was already asked and answered. Learn More
Browse 33 questions Browse 33 questions and 95 answers
Why did you choose this?
Stark Bro's Store
Grown zone
Marina I on May 31, 2020
michael G on May 28, 2020
Grown zone
Marina I on May 31, 2020
Cross-pollination of Honey crisp, couldn't afford Cortland.
Charles C on May 31, 2020
michael G on May 28, 2020
As a pollinator and your stock was limited.
Kelly O on May 28, 2020
Had ordered one as a gift in the past. And it was a good choice then. It is a Starkspur tree. The price was right!
Howard S on May 28, 2020
it has long been my favorite. but I couldn't grow it where I lived. it likes cold. now I can yeppy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! first tasted it up high in apple hill, california. sweet tart and crispy. loved baking with it.
ANITA D on May 26, 2020
For the taste, crisp and spicy and long keeper.
Vicki M on May 26, 2020
The taste.
Dana R on May 19, 2020
My dad loved these apples. He was from Arkansas. Before he passed he wanted some of these apples and found out they were good. That???s why I am ordering this type of apple and will plant it in memory of Joe T McNutt who lived at WhitSprings Arkansas
Sue M on May 2, 2020
Great trees , stark bros are too knotch!
Jonathan C on May 1, 2020
planting variety of apples for our backyard apple cider making
Patricia J on Apr 26, 2020
good flavor
Wayne J on Apr 24, 2020
Great crisp apple a little tart good keeper everyone I share them with loves them.
LORENE F on Apr 13, 2020
For deer late ripping
Andrew D on Apr 2, 2020
Because I have had this Variety of Apples for Years, My Favorite.
Stosh G on Mar 13, 2020
I have an Arkansas Black Apple tree that is aged and with the humongous production last year laid over on the ground. Even so, this 7-8 foot tree produced 7 bushels. I also like this variety for the late date to pick. I put them in a cool spot and still had fresh apples to make an apple cake for Valentine's day! It's time to replace this "winner" variety!
Emilie W on Mar 11, 2020
i love the taste of these apples
christine w on Mar 8, 2020
RICKY D on Mar 5, 2020
Claude R on Feb 23, 2020
THEODORE F on Feb 16, 2020
friend recommended
Carmen B on Jan 16, 2020
This is my absolute favorite apple ever!
Randy S on Jan 6, 2020
ripens latest, feed deer
Tate J on Dec 30, 2019
Requested by recipient.
Greg S on Dec 23, 2019
Storage, fits in with my other Apple pollinators - I wish there was a full chart for your apple pollination - I have to ask every time I consider a variety...
Megan L on Dec 9, 2019
We bought 2, and 1 survived, this is an amazing apple! It makes and old fashioned apple pie that everyone at our Thanksgiving table said was, the best apple pie they have ever tasted! It is the best eating apple our friends and neighbors have ever tasted and when washed and polished the most beautiful apple we have ever seen, a true gift!
JULIE K on Dec 6, 2019
Long keeping ability ..... Baking & cider .... Originated in SC close to my GA location so should grow well in my climate ...
GARY M on Oct 18, 2019
best for pest free for my region
MARY L on Oct 15, 2019
I love these apples. They really store well. Stark Bros is the most trusted name in fruit trees.
Darrell S on Oct 15, 2019
Tart apple with more disease resistance than a granny smith. Plus spur-bearing for espalier.
Wayne S on Jun 12, 2019
Dad wanted it for Father's Day
Ashley S on Jun 4, 2019
Our daughter's favorite apple.
Judith L on May 27, 2019
I am curious about the flavor and wanted to bring a new variety to my area, since I have not seen these around before.
Eddie H on May 24, 2019
An old favorite.
Gary W on May 22, 2019
to espalier
Catherine L on May 20, 2019
I purchased two before and they have done well here in central Pa.
ELDON N on May 9, 2019
We chose this variety for the long storage ability. This will also mix beautifully with our other apple varieties for some wonderful cider!!
Amanda J on May 6, 2019
heirloom apples are more fun to grow
Arthur P on May 2, 2019
learned about it in Sedona and was enchanted by the story.
KATHLEEN S on Apr 14, 2019
Starkspur production
LAWRENCE M on Apr 9, 2019
Starting a cider orchard
Todd G on Apr 4, 2019
Good storage, ripening time, cold hardy
Moriah L on Feb 4, 2019
good storage
Deborah B on Jan 12, 2019
One of my favorite apple varieties, and it grows well in our hot, humid climate.
Marleigh M on Jan 11, 2019
recommended for my zone 7b
Geoffrey G on Dec 11, 2018
Uses and long storage.
SHARON F on Sep 30, 2018
My favorite apple.
Josephine G on Sep 28, 2018
Great keeper
SHARON Y on May 18, 2018
I had one before/ great apples
Williiam P on Apr 29, 2018
This will be our 2nd tree, the apples stay firm all winter and set their sugar after frost.
TIMOTHY J on Apr 5, 2018
Cross-pollination of Honey crisp, couldn't afford Cortland.
Charles C on May 31, 2020
As a pollinator and your stock was limited.
Kelly O on May 28, 2020
Will Arkansas Black, Jonastar & Granny Smith apple trees cross pollinate one another?
Mark D on Mar 19, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Arkansas Black blooms mid/late-season; Jonastar blooms mid-season and Granny Smith blooms mid-season. It they're planted within 50' of one another, you should get pretty satisfactory cross-pollination.
I am planning to grow this tree organically. Does it have good resistance to disease problems in Missouri Ozarks?
kristikat on Jan 5, 2018
BEST ANSWER: According to the Missouri Botanical Garden: "The four major disease problems of apples are fire blight, powdery mildew, apple scab and cedar apple rust. Potential insect pests include aphids, maggots, codling moth, plum curculio and spider mites. This cultivar is reported to have much improved disease resistance [over the original Arkansas Black variety]." I hope that answers your question.
Will a candycrisp apple pollinate this one?
Nathan H on Mar 29, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Yes, it will. They have similar bloom times.
What root stock is this semi dwarf Arkansas black tree?
Ryan M on Mar 28, 2020
My trees have already produced lots of apples. When do I harvest them? I think they are Arkansas black and the limbs are loaded. It???s only August.
Stacy H on Jul 30, 2019
BEST ANSWER: If summer started early where you are (as it did in many parts of the country this year), your apple harvest may come sooner than usual. Even though the apples may appear ripe (some varieties, like this one, color early), they still take a while to ripen on the tree. Cut one open; if the seeds are dark brown, the apple is ripe. It will probably be a while yet.
Would a Starkspur Winesap Apple Tree and a Starkspur Arkansas Black Apple Tree work to cross-pollinate each other?
Betty G on May 3, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. They may overlap to pollinate but its not 100 % as the Arkansas Black has a mid-late bloom time and the Winesap has an early to Mid bloom time. Your best bet is to pick a variety with the same bloom times for correct pollination.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
Are these good for apple butter?
Don G on Oct 18, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Hi Don, My Starkspur Arkansas Black Apple is being grown for Apple Cider. The tree has only been in the ground for a year so I have not gotten any fruit yet. We have 5 varieties of Apple that are being specifically grown for combinations to make ciders. My hope is year 5 I'll have our 1st cider.
When will you have Arkansas black apples? Can you ship to California? I will need about 100 to 150 trees.
Beard H on Sep 28, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. We do not have a guaranteed ETA on when more will become available. We are very sorry for this inconvenience and completely understand your disappointment. Rest assured, that if you sign up for a notification, you'll be one of the first to be notified when it becomes available again.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us, remember that we're here for you. Have a great day!

Are these seeds or actual trees?
Tiye M on May 2, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. These are 2 year old trees that will ship 3-4 foot tall.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
Can I plant two Arkansas blacks and a cox antique apple for fruit success? Or do I need an additional tree?
Carol N on Apr 21, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. Unfortunately their bloom times are not the same One is a Early and the other is a Mid - Late bloomer. I suggest adding a Golden delicious in there for proper pollination and fruit production.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
how long before I can eat an Jonathan apple? 83yrs olkd . Will I see one in my yard ?
Paul M on Apr 19, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. You can find the years-to-bear information in the Characteristics section, near the top of the page, underneath the description. This tree takes 2-4 years to bear.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
Will the Arkansas black apple pollinate with a semi dwarf gala?
Joyce M on Feb 23, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. Yes - These two are both mid season bloomers so they will indeed cross pollinate each other.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
will the following dwarf trees cross pollinate well: Honey Crisp and Wealthy?
Mary S on Feb 7, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. Yes. These two varieties will pollinate each other.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
Why the price of organic variety of Arkansas Black apple is so high?
Mozam on Jan 14, 2020
BEST ANSWER: We appreciate you reaching out to us. The price for the organic tree is higher because we have put a lot of time and care into growing a true USDA certified organic tree.

If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
I am in zone 7A is Arkansas Black resister to cedar rust and blight in my area? Thanks
Frank on Nov 7, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Arkansas Black is resistant according to U of A
I have no had any rust problems.
I live in west central wisconsin. It's Oct 27th and the ground is starting to freeze. Can I order trees now and have it / them delivered in the spring?
Steve M on Oct 27, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Hi Steve, Yes you may place an order to arrive in the spring. Our website is not fully set up for spring deliveries so give customer support a call at 800.325.4180. If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
Do you ship in Canada ?
Clanna on Oct 24, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Hi Anna - At this time, Stark Bro's does not ship to Canada.
I am interested in purchasing this tree, and I already have two urban apple varieties (blushing delight and golden treat. Will either of these pollinate the Arkansas black? Many Thanks!
Jennifer S on Oct 15, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Hi Jennifer - We appreciate you reaching out to us. Unfortunately, we do not have any supporting documentation on the Urban varieties specific bloom time. Therefore, I would not recommend them as suitable pollinators for the Arkansas Black because it blooms mid-late season. If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us. Have a great day!
How long does it take to produce apples ?
Tbassman on Oct 12, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Hi Tony, It can take approximately 2-5 years for the Arkansas Black apple to bear fruit. If you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach back out to us, remember that we're here for you. Have a great day!
Will a Chestnut Crabapple pollinate an Arkansas Black?
Marie W on Aug 28, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Yes, it will.
Is the Starkspur Arkansas black apple tree considered a dwarf?
Dick L P on Jul 20, 2019
BEST ANSWER: It generally grows to be somewhere between a dwarf and a semi-dwarf, but you can keep it as small as you like. It's a wonderful tree and a very prolific producer.
Will the Liberty and Starkspur?? Arkansas Black Apple cross pollinate each other?
Mark M on Mar 9, 2019
BEST ANSWER: I'm sorry, no: Liberty is an early bloomer and Arkansas Black is quite late.
What color is the flesh of the Arkansas Black? My NC mountain neighbors have an old apple tree, unknown variety, that bears smallish apples, with a Snow White flesh, and pink capillary blushing from the skin barely into the flesh. Local orchardists have thought it was an Ark, Black, another thinks it is a Cortland. But it is way too tart to be a Cortland. Any ideas? Flesh color???
Karen O on Oct 15, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Hi Karen, Thank you for your question. The Arkansas Black apple is a very late season apple with a white to cream, pale yellow flesh. In zone 5, this apple ripens in October. Cortlands ripen early in September. I hope this information is helpful.
Will a red delicious or Fuji pollinate an Arkansas Black?
Tom M on Aug 22, 2018
BEST ANSWER: They are all in the same flowering group and will each pollinate the other.
we have had an arkansas for over 20 yrs wantto add another do we need any other type to pollinate the new tree?
Charles B on Apr 14, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Whatever has been pollinating your older Arkansas Black will do the same thing for your new one.
what is the chill requirement for the Arkansas black apple?
Desiree on May 11, 2017
BEST ANSWER: This tree requires about 800-900 chill hours.
I am ordering the Arkansas Black - my question is would a Winesap work as a cross pollinateor?
Connie K on Jan 26, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Winesap apple trees cannot pollinate other apple varieties. You would need a third apple tree in the mix, such as Golden Delicious, to be a pollen source for both Winesap and Arkansas Black to be fruitful.
we have cedar trees next door and my trees(goldrush and Jonared have the blight and I have heard the Arkansas Black are more resistant. Is this true?
Nancy on Aug 11, 2016
BEST ANSWER: Cedar apple rust is separate from (fire) blight, but you are correct: Arkansas Black is more resistant to cedar apple rust in certain locations than the GoldRush and Jon-A-Red varieties.
I have Arkansas Black, I know I need pollinators but my trees are blooming in September and October, zone 7B. Crab apples have been suggested, but if crab apples bloom in the spring and my trees are blooming in the fall, how can one pollinate the other?
Barbara F on Sep 25, 2020
what trees cross pollinate with arkansas black apple?
brian b on Apr 16, 2020

Customer Reviews

4.5 / 5.0
54 Reviews
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
Arkansas Black
Over 20 years ago I planted an Arkansas Black from Stark's. The tree has given us loads of apples virtually every year that it has been producing. Though not the biggest apple type from my orchard, it has become one of my most favorite for eating fresh off the tree in October, and it is the best baker we have. We never eat all of them, and our resident deer population seems to love the windfall as much as we love the ones that get picked. Before my retirement, my coworkers always looked forward to the bags of Arkansas Blacks I brought in for their enjoyment. As reported earlier, Japanese beetles do not seem to bother this tree much, preferring my crabapples and grape vines instead. My rural acres have given me a lot of enjoyment planting all kinds of trees over the last 40 + years, but Arkansas Black has to be one of my top 5.
January 11, 2017
Arkansas Black
Best apple I have ever eaten Whether fresh off the tree, applesauce or a pie they are great. Easy to grow, size and shape are easy to work with and the apples are big with a deep red color
March 3, 2016
over 5 years ago
We have just recently moved into a new home and last fall planted 5 new Stark trees. The Arkblack was my first choice based on years of previous experience. The apples are nearly black when fully ripe and the meat ppure white. They are so dense the birds do not bother them and they are also very worm resistant. They are too hard to just pick and eat, like a Gala or Red Delicious but are excellent for cooking and storage.
Hal J. Allen, Vineyard, Utah
March 4, 2016
over 5 years ago
Bug free!
I've been so impressed by the resiliency of this apple variety. My other apples are being eaten alive by Japanese beetles (sadly) but they are not touching the Arkansas Black. Just amazing.
August 25, 2016
over 5 years ago
Arkansas Black Apple
This is one hardy apple. If I could have only one apple tree it would be an 'Arkansas Black' for hardiness, flavor and long keeping.
May 16, 2016
over 6 years ago
Great Winter Apple
Starkspur Arkansas Black Apple is a winner! It has great flavor, keeps all winter in the frig. The tree bears large crops each year and is very hardy.
March 17, 2016
over 5 years ago
Arkansas Black Apple
We planted our Arkansas Black apple tree last spring. We ordered the tree after reading several recommendations that indicated that this variety was a good match to our area in Southeastern Oklahoma. The tree immediately took off and surprised us with its vigorous growth. We mated it with a red delicious tree from Stark for cross pollination. To our surprise, the Arkansas Black bloomed this year and is even making two apples. We guess a neighbor must have an apple tree to allow for pollination. The tree has good form and is still trying to put on apples. At this time we couldn't be happier with the tree.
May 15, 2016
over 5 years ago
Bareroot Arkansas Black Apple Tree
It came in the mail, I followed the preparation and planting instructions and the tree took off :-) It is growin great, very healthy and I can't wait to have a taste from home when it starts putting on fruit. I love my tree!!
May 19, 2016
over 5 years ago
I have had previous positive experience with this apple
It is too early to fruit but I had a tree like this at previous address and I loved it. It was very productive for a dwarf and I am looking forward to getting them again.
May 24, 2016
over 5 years ago
very good apple
Product arrived in a timely manner,this will be the second spring for my Arkansas Black Apple tree . It is growing very well , putting out more branches and leaves.. I can't wait for it to produce apples , i had one of thees apple trees a while back before the sewage line came through, and these were the crunchiest apples I had ever eaten. I would recommend this type of apple tree to a friend.

Ray Pennsylvania
May 23, 2016
over 5 years ago