This section is from the book "The Fruit Manual: Containing The Descriptions And Synonyms Of The Fruits And Fruit Trees Of Great Britain", by Robert Hogg. Also available from Amazon: The Fruit Manual.
Fruit, medium sized; Pearmain-shaped. Skin, dull green, with broken stripes of dull red on the side next the sun. Eye, small, set in a shallow and slightly plaited basin. Stalk, deeply inserted in a round cavity, scarcely protruding beyond the base. Flesh, yellowish white, crisp, juicy, brisk, and aromatic.
A dessert apple; in use from December to January.
It received its name from a gentleman of the name of Benwell, of Henley-on-Thames, from whom it was received and brought into cultivation by Kirke, a nurseryman at Brompton.
Fruit, medium sized; round, and slightly flattened. Skin, pale green, and changing to yellow as it ripens, with stripes of red next the sun. Eye, open, placed in a wide and shallow basin. Stalk, inserted in a deep cavity. Flesh, crisp, juicy, and briskly acid.
An excellent culinary apple; in use during September and October.
This variety was raised by the Rev. S. Breedon, D.D., of Bere Court, near Pangbourne, in Berkshire.
Fruit, above medium size, two inches and three-quarters wide, and nearly three inches high; roundish ovate, inclining to conical, and handsomely shaped. Skin, yellow with a few markings of red on the shaded side; but where exposed to the sun it is almost entirely washed and striped with fine clear red. Eye, small and partially open, with erect convergent segments, set in a rather deep and plaited basin, which is surrounded with five prominent knobbed plaits. Stamens, median; tube, short, funnel-shaped. Stalk, short and thick, inserted in a rather shallow cavity, with generally a fleshy protuberance on one side of it, and a knobbed end, and surrounded with yellowish brown russet, which extends over a considerable portion of the base. Flesh, white, sometimes stained with red under the skin, tender, and juicy, with a sweet vinous flavour. Cells, ovate; axile, open, or abaxile.
A very handsome and excellent apple, either for culinary or dessert use. It is in season from November to March.
The tree is hardy, a vigorous grower, but an indifferent bearer till it is old. The flowers are very late in expanding, and are, therefore, not liable to be injured by spring frosts; but they are so crowded in clusters, and the stalks are so slender and weak, they sutler much if attacked by honeydew or aphis.
This is a Nottinghamshire apple. In a communication I received from the late Mr. J. It. Pearson, of Chilwell, he says, "My father became so in love with the Ben Pool that he planted it largely. He used to tell how a girl named Bess Pool found in a wood the seedling tree full of ripe fruit; how, showing the apples in her father's house - he kept a village inn - the tree became known, and my grandfather procured grafts. He would then show the seven first-planted trees of the kind in one of our nurseries; tell how Loudon had been to see them and given an account of them in his Gardeners' Magazine; make his visitors try to clasp round their boles, and measure the space covered by their branches. He would then boast how, one season, when apples were very scarce, the fruit of these trees was sold at 7s. 6d. a peck, and made £70, or an average of £10 a tree.
"So far from thinking the Bess Pool a regular bearer, I believe it to be a very uncertain one, and anything but a profitable one to plant."