We picked apples today! It was such a beautiful day for it too! We are having a summer like week this week with warm temps and sun, all week long. It's a good time to get some fall work done outside!
My friend, Janet, and I picked the apples this morning. Hubby worked on another job.
We have several apple trees but most don't produce usable apples or they have just little ones. There is only one really good apple tree that is worth picking. I have no idea what kind of apples they are. I haven't made an effort to become informed about apples. I know 'Delicious' apples, 'Cortlands' and my grocery store favourites, 'Royal Gala' which taste more like pears than apples, but I am sorely lacking in apple knowledge otherwise.
This is what we harvested this morning. It's a lovely bunch of apples, especially for an organic, never sprayed tree. That's it pictured at the top too. Beautiful apples! If you know what kind they are, please tell me.
The deer have already eaten all the apples within their reach, (which is also our reach). We didn't have a ladder so we had to climb. I climbed up into the tree and out on the branches to shake them, then we picked them up off the ground. The apples are the perfect ripeness now. Ripe enough to fall easily when the branches are shaken, but haven't fallen on the ground on their own yet. We didn't have a ladder so we had to do it this way. It worked well enough. We got lots of good apples!
I haven't climbed a tree in decades! I used to be good at it, once upon a time. I have become more careful in my older age. It was a humbling experience. I have lost some of my nerve, but I'm thinking maybe that's good thing...
The apples will sit in the kitchen for now, where I will work on them here and there. I had thought to leave them on the porch until I had time to work on them but, after remembering that we get racoon visits, moved them into the house. I must always remember the racoons!
These will be made into apple sauce, pie filling, baked apples and the good ones will go into the cold cellar for storage. We can keep apples in there, at least this year, because we don't have any other veggies in there with them. We didn't grow potatoes or carrots. (Ripening apples emit ethelene gas that makes other things ripen very fast and not keep very long.) The squash will be in there, but just for a short time, until they are ripe, then they go into the freezer. I need the squash seed for the seed store.
It was a lot of work but well worth the effort! We are looking forward to homemade applesauce and pies!
I am also planning on making apple wine, of course, and I can do that in the middle of the winter :-)
All in all it was a great endeavour and well worth doing, even though I would not have wanted to do it by myself. Big jobs always go much faster and are more fun with a friend! Don't you think so? Thank you Janet for your help!Update next day: I graded the apples into three categories and put them all into the cellar. They are in shallow boxes with newspaper between each layer. I have read that they keep the best if individually wrapped in newspaper but I'm not doing that! lol! This is the next best thing. I will probably process the "eat me first" category within the next couple of weeks. Possibly into wine, definitely into apple sauce.
I love having our own organic apples!