Denomination: 'Masonova'
Botanical Name: Malus domestica
Applicant/Holder: Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, Kentville
Atlantic Food & Horticulture Research Centre
32 Main Street
Kentville, Nova Scotia
B4N 1J5
Breeder: David Crowe, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, Kentville, Nova Scotia
Agent in Canada: Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada
Office of Intellectual Property and Commercialization
6000 C&E Trail
Lacombe, Alberta
T4L 1W1
Tel: (403) 782-8126
Application Date: 2002-05-03
Application Number: 02-3089
Protective direction granted: 2002-05-03
Grant of Rights Date: 2006-05-25
Certificate Number: 2432
Grant of Rights Termination Date: 2024-05-25

Variety Description

Varieties used for comparison: 'Novaspy' and 'Liberty'

Summary: 'Masonova' is a mid-season apple variety with an upright branching habit whereas the branches of 'Liberty' have a spreading habit and those of 'Novaspy' are weeping. 'Masonova' has stronger branches and wider leaves than the reference varieties. Fruit bearing occurs predominantly on the spurs for 'Masonova' while it occurs on both the spurs and shoots for 'Novaspy'. The dormant one year old shoots of 'Masonova' are thicker, less pubescent and have fewer lenticels than those of either reference variety. Time of flowering is very late for 'Masonova' while it is mid-season for 'Novaspy' and mid-season to late for 'Liberty'. The colour of the flower buds of 'Masonova' are lighter blue pink than those of the reference varieties. Petal shape for 'Masonova' is orbicular while it is ovate to oblong for 'Novaspy' and ovate for 'Liberty'. 'Masonova' produces medium sized fruit which is flat globose in shape with a pronounced eye basin and stalk cavity whereas 'Novaspy' produces large fruit which is truncate conical in shape. In comparison to the fruit of the reference varieties, 'Masonova' has a larger eye aperture, deeper eye basin, wider stalk cavity and more over colour of the skin than the reference varieties. The colour of the fruit flesh for 'Masonova' is ivory with some green and red venation surrounding the core while it is cream for 'Novaspy' and white for 'Liberty'. In cross-section of the fruit, the locules of 'Masonova' are closed whereas they are open for the reference varieties. Browning of the fruit flesh is absent to very weak for 'Masonova', moderate for 'Novaspy' and strong for 'Liberty'. The fruit of 'Masonova' has softer flesh than the reference varieties. The texture of the flesh is fine for 'Masonova' while it is coarse for 'Novaspy'.


'Masonova' is a dessert apple variety with winter hardiness to Canadian zone 5b. The best method of propagation is budding onto rootstock liners in a nursery. It produces moderately vigorous, upright trees with moderate to strong branches. The angle of the fruit bearing branches is around 90 degrees and the major fruit load is predominantly borne on spurs. One year old shoots have moderately shiny bark, absent to very sparse pubescence on the upper half and only a few lenticels. In cross section, the shoot tip leaves are concave and have sparse pubescence on the upper side. The lower side of the shoot tip leaves is green with no secondary colouration. The fully expanded leaves are small to medium sized and the stipules are medium in size.

Seasonal flower development is very late for 'Masonova'. This variety has medium pink to dark pink flower buds with predominantly green pedicels. The flowers are single with orbicular shaped petals that touch and overlap. The petals are light blue pink on the inner surface and blue pink on the outer surface.

'Masonova' produces medium sized fruit that are asymmetrical and flat globose in shape with a pronounced eye basin and stock cavity. The fruit has no ribbing. The eye is medium in size with an open aperture. The sepals are long and touching at the base. The eye basin of 'Masonova' is deep and medium in width. The fruit stalk is medium in length and thickness and the stalk cavity is broad and medium in depth. The surface of the fruit is smooth and the skin has no bloom and no waxiness. The ground colour of the skin on a fully mature fruit is creamy white with a very high amount of dark red overcolour in a stripped blush pattern. There is no russet on 'Masonova'. The lenticels are slightly prominent and small in size. The flesh of the fruit is ivory with some green and red venation surrounding the core. In cross-section, the core line is absent to very weakly distinct. The locules are closed. 'Masonova' matures mid-season and has moderately good fruit setting. At maturity the seeds are brown and normal in shape. Browning of the flesh is absent to very weak one hour after being cut. The fruit flesh is fine in texture, moderately juicy and moderately firm. The storage life for 'Masonova' is a maximum of 180 days at 3-4 degrees Celsius in air storage. 'Masonova' is resistant to scab (Venturia inaequalis).

Origin & Breeding History: 'Masonova' (experimental designation S47-24-42) originated from a cross between the pollen parent 'Empire' and the seed parent 'S21-42-69' in 1974. Pollen was collected from the cultivar 'Empire', stored and dried for use in the traditional crossing method. At the full bloom stage, the emasculated flowers of 'S21-42-69' were pollinated with the dried pollen from 'Empire'. Seeds were collected from successfully pollinated fruit in the fall of 1974. In 1978, one year old trees were planted in the seedling evaluation field block of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in Kentville, Nova Scotia. Fruit was evaluated from 1984 to 1988 and re-propagation for field evaluations was done in 1991. The selection of 'Masonova' took place in 1989. Selection criteria for 'Masonova' included scab resistance combined with the desirable eating quality traits of 'Empire' and solid, complete red colouration of the fruit.

Tests & Trials: The comparative tests and trials for 'Masonova' were conducted in 2003 and 2004 by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) of Kentville, Nova Scotia. The fruit and tree characteristics were evaluated on trees planted in 1992 in a cooperative scab-resistant cultivar trial set up by AAFC in cooperation with grower E.W. Peill at Starr's Point, Nova Scotia. The trial consisted of four trees of each variety grafted on 'Budogovsky 490' rootstock. They were planted 3.6 metres apart in rows which were spaced at 5.5 metres. In recent years, the orchard has been managed by J.W. Mason & Sons, Ltd.. All colour characteristics were determined using the 1986 version of the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) colour charts and measured characteristics were based on ten plant measurements.

Comparison tables for 'Masonova' with reference varieties 'Novaspy' and 'Liberty'

Thickness of dormant one-year-old shoot (mm)

  'Masonova' 'Novaspy' 'Liberty'
mean 5.3 3.8 4.8
std. deviation 0.72 0.48 0.59

Leaf width (mm)

  'Masonova' 'Novaspy' 'Liberty'
mean 35.8 49.9 52.8
std. Deviation 4.85 6.42 5.75

Petal width (mm)

  'Masonova' 'Novaspy' 'Liberty'
mean 18.3 16.6 15.6
std. Deviation 1.16 0.70 0.52

Colour of flower buds (RHS)

  'Masonova' 'Novaspy' 'Liberty'
colour 65A 63B 63B

Colour of petals (RHS)

  'Masonova' 'Novaspy' 'Liberty'
inner side 62B 62C 62B
outer side 65B 63C 65A

Fruit diameter (cm)

  'Masonova' 'Novaspy' 'Liberty'
mean 7.29 7.78 7.07
std. deviation 0.40 0.45 0.46

Depth of fruit eye basin (mm)

  'Masonova' 'Novaspy' 'Liberty'
mean 6.44 5.83 4.51
std. deviation 0.99 1.12 0.69

Width of stock cavity (cm)

  'Masonova' 'Novaspy' 'Liberty'
mean 3.7 3.4 2.9
std. deviation 0.14 0.37 0.18
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