Elshof is a bright red mutant of the Elstar variety. The apple is medium sized with a red blush and not striped. It has an excellent aroma and sugar/acidity balance. Its flavour profile is highly appreciated by many consumers. It is an excellent quality apple. Elshof is a mid season ripening variety.


Elshof fruits are bright red with a yellow background colour. Chimeras or fruits with slight loss of colour only occur sporadically. The red blush covers 50% to 75% of the skin.


Elshof flowers relatively late. Pollen is usually of good quality. There is a small degree of setting after self-pollination but cross-pollination is more satisfactory. The fruit is ready for harvesting in September. The picking time is highly dependent upon the intended storage method and storage time. Staged picking is advisable. Elshof is not very responsive to premature fruit fall.


Elshof produces fairly early and has a good productivity rate. It does have a tendency to biennial bearing though, which implies that early thinning is required, which also benefits the fruit size. Elshof has good storage qualities. It can be stored until February in a cooling unit at 1˚C. In ULO conditions storage can be extended until April. Longer storage periods often produce fruits with a short shelf life. Ripe apples are not suitable for storage.


Elshof is susceptible to apple scab (Venturia inaequalis), powdery mildew (Podosphaera leucotricha) and Nectria canker (Nectria galligena). Spraying to combat Nectria canker also needs to be delayed because the leaves start to drop very late.


Elshof is easy to grow in north-western Europe. Elshof is frequently grown in the Netherlands and the north of Germany because it has a slightly better colour than Red Elstar in somewhat reduced light conditions. On the whole the trees are quite vigorous growers and need to be well maintained. Pruning and fruit thinning require a great deal of attention. Growers and consultants have now accrued considerable growing experience.

Elshof is protected by Plant Breeders’ Rights and is available under licence.

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