Wildfire® Gala RKD(S) – experiences

Wildfire® Gala RKD(S)

  • Variety: RKD(S), european PBR, any propagation is forbidden
  • Brand: Wildfire®
  • Origin: Washington State (USA)
  • Owner of all variety and trademark rights: (outside USA) Braun Nursery & Escande Nursery

Find below our experiences in orcharding and conservation in different areas. Those informations are not to be considered as a guideline for orcharding RKD. Indeed, every grower should respect his area, particularly climate, water availability etc. Those variables are important factors for orcharding in general.

Variety description:

Striped clone of Gala, very attractive with flames, matures approx. 14 days before Standard Gala.
Mutation of Tenroy Gala

According to our experiences, RKD does not present any particular problems, as it is very similar to Standard Gala for all aspects.


Please adapt your planting distance taking into account a reduced vigor of approx. 20% of RKD, compared to Standard Gala.
Possible distances: between the rows approx. 3m-3,2m.
Planting distance: approx. 0,7m-0,80m.

Cultivation, Pruning:

Orcharding RKD is rather simple; but due to the reduced vigor (20%) it’s intelligent to keep the plants always vital and generative. RKD crops early, it’s rather easy to produce 5-7kg of apples per tree already in leaf 2 with the correct agronomic management.


Manage RKD like any other Gala: it’s necessary to thin in order to avoid biannual bearing and especially small fruits. With the same thinning program of Gala, you achieve good results in RKD as well. It may be necessary to add some hand thinning.

Harvest, fruit:

approx. end of July/begin of August (in Girlan/Cornaiano, South Tyrol, Italy), approx. 14 days before Standard Gala.

RKD is a very attractive Gala with flames, similar to Gala SchniCo and identic taste to any other Gala. It matures approx. 14 days before Gala and it behaves totally like Gala. The only difference is the vigor: RKD grows approx. 20% less, and you should consider this in the choice of your planting distances. Shelf-life and conservation like Gala. Fruit size is medium, like Gala; as RKD is really productive, your thinning is essential. In fact, if you overload RKD you end up with small fruits and lack of color. Mind your relation fruit-leaves as this is essential for the production of high-quality fruits. RKD apples are conical and symmetric, the skin is not sensitive. RKD is characterized by a very attractive striped red overcolor, beautiful flames. In good coloring areas RKD apples have a high percentage of overcolor. In those areas you need only two picks, according to our experiences we never had more than 3 picks. The taste is very similar to Gala, with a very fine texture, a juicy crunchy flesh, with a sweet tendency and very low acidity.

Harvest potential:
RKD fruits are very nice and homogeneous. The variety is very adapted to lots of production areas. Especially in early areas RKD gives you an immense competitive advantage: a early picking (approx. 2 weeks) means an earlier entrance into the market. The RKD tree on M9 rootstock crops very easily and rapidly, indeed your production is very good from leave 2 on. As it happens to be for any Gala, you should not over crop and keep attention to manage well your relation fruit/leaves. By doing this, you end up with a good and constant production, with nicely colored fruits of great eating quality. RKD is not susceptible for biannual bearing and has a stable production. Fruit size is the same as Gala, approx. 65-75mm.

Harvest data:
Measured in Eraclea – Venezia (Italy)

  • Firmness (kg/cm2): 7,5-9,5 kg/cm2
  • Acidity (g/l): 7-8 g/l
  • Sugars (°Brix): 12-14 Brix

In good coloring areas you need only 2 strips, according to our experiences you need maximum 3. Harvest begin is approx. 14 days before Standard Gala. Till now we started harvesting at a starch index of 3,0-4,5 (index on a scale to 5) (0,9-1,2, measured with DA-meter). As RKD colors very nicely, in good coloring areas you need only 2 strips. We have never observed fruit dropping. The quality of the fruit is rather homogeneous with a nice overcolor in all parts of the trees, from the bottom to the top. RKD is a summer apple, maturing approx. 14 days before commercial Galas.

Harvest 2018 RKD Standard Gala
Girlan: 02/08/2018 16/08/2018
Eraclea: 27/07/2018 12/08/2018
Harvest 2019 RKD Standard Gala
Girlan: 05/08/2019 20/08/2019
Eraclea: 03/08/2019 18/08/2019


RKD stores very well in the cool store, like any other Gala: with Smartfresh® and CA (controlled atmosphere) our experiences are very good and RKD never showed problems till end of March/April.

Any more questions?

Are there any more questions about our varities and products?

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