Sunday, July 15, 2018

And so it begins

A tapered green apple on a rock

Perhaps not the best apple of all time, but the event it heralds has no match in the calendar of fruit.

The above Lodi apple is the first of the 2018 apple harvest.

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Fraud gallery

In the last few years we've seen some new faces on the supermarket shelves.

Kiku is sweet and crisp and juicy. Mahana Red is crisp and juicy and sweet.

Kiku apple
Kiku
Mahana Red apple
Mahana Red

Sunday, June 17, 2018

The stingiest month

April may be the cruelest month, but this particular June feels like the stingiest.

Of course there can be no fresh local fruit this month, but the southern hemisphere had a harvest not too long ago.

Where are those apples? Not in supermarkets.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

The Herefordshire Pomona

containing coloured figures and descriptions of the most esteemed kinds of apples and pears.

Color plate from the Herefordshire Pomona
Source: The Herefordshire Pomona, Volume II


The Biodiversity Library recently posted scans of the two-volume Herefordshire Pomona.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

A fairy tale that's not even wrong

"Honeycrisp Saves the World"

magical apples floating in air bearing tiny houses

Recently National Public Radio's "Planet Money" decided to explain apples to us.

Because the true story of the apple and cider renaissance is so boring, the explanation came in the form of a fairy tale, once upon a time, in which nearly every story element is unfaithful to the truth.

Sunday, April 29, 2018

A dab of mustard

Pinata apple with jar of mustard

Imagine my surprise to find mustard in my apple last week.

Not the actual golden brown spicy stuff, but rather its distinctive tang. Minus the heat.

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Calm before the bloom

Bare apple trees
Not a bud has burst earlier today at Huchins Farm in Concord, Massachusetts.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Five apple names with stories to tell

I love how every apple has a story. Sometimes the stories come with titles, in the names of the apples.



Here are five of them.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

The Apple Snob

As the saying goes: blogging = focus + voice.

I've nailed the focus bit. But sometimes I fret about the voice.

Meet the Apple Snob, an online persona I have played with, though only in my head.

Dashing fellow with a bicycle
Tally ho!


Because who does not like a little knowing snark with their fruit?

Thursday, March 29, 2018

The attack of the Honeycrisp wannabees

Honeycrisp regnant
Who shall dethrone the mighty Honeycrisp?
The wolves have been circling for some time around old King Honeycrisp. This variety originated, and still dominates, the niche of super crisp, tooth-achingly sweet apples.

Honeycrisp's rival apples aspire to rule the kingdom, not to topple it. To supplant with same-only-better, not to challenge with new tastes and textures.

By when did the King get so old? What makes him vulnerable?

Friday, March 23, 2018

Apples on the web: Out on a Limb

More than a hundred thoughtful descriptions (and photos) of apples are tucked away in a small website set up to manage the Out on a Limb Apple CSA (community supported agriculture).

list of apples

The descriptions are unsigned, but authorship must certainly belong to one of the CSA's farmers, apple sleuth and rescuer John Bunker.

Friday, March 16, 2018

The Rip Van Winkle apple

GoldRush apples, from 2017 and 2016.

Long have I marveled at the wonderful keeping qualities of GoldRush, a modern variety developed by the PRI Co-op.

Packed well, GoldRush keeps in my ordinary refrigerator, peaking in April and still quite tasty in June.

So today, six months out, let's sample the fall 2017 harvest.

And while we are at it, the 2016 harvest too.