New York apple breeder Dr. Susan Brown answered questions about SnapDragon (NY 1) in the latest RosBREED newsletter:
What is the pedigree of SnapDragon?
SnapDragon is a cross of Honeycrisp and a New York advanced selection whose parents were Golden Delicious and a New York cross of Monroe and Melrose.
How was it developed?
The cross was made at Cornell University, Geneva, in 1998. The seedling first fruited four years later. It was from a cross of 381 seedlings, several of which have commercial potential.
This cultivar was the first tree in a long row, and when we sampled it at the start of our evaluations, I teased my assistant that we couldn’t select the first tree in the row.
We noted it, went back again, and quickly decided that it was special and it would be propagated on a fairly large scale the first year of testing (which is unusual).
Fast-tracking this selection shortened the period from cross to negotiating commercialization rights to 11 years—one of the fastest times for an apple cultivar to be commercialized.
What makes SnapDragon so special?
SnapDragon is a very precocious, productive tree. Fruit has exceptional quality, with crisp texture, good juiciness, high soluble solids concentration and pleasant aromatic flavors.