Posted: 24/11/2013 at 08:21
If you are growing on an M26 rootstock then that would probably be too small for you to grow anything up and through it. Its best not to have the fruiting branches of the tree crowded out by anything else as it will only cause trouble with pruning and the trees fruiting ability and may encourage fungal diseases. As for taste, that would be down to your personal preference, but I like Spartan, Cox, Discovery. Its a good idea to have a pollinator close by, either a tree of the same pollinating group or at least one in the group either side or a crab apple which flowers at the same time.