Sunday, December 30, 2012

Arkansas Black & white

Season's greetings from Adam's Apples and Arkansas Black.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Sport

Professional league apple bobbing? Fruit Quidditch?

Nope. Biologically, a sport is a spontaneous mutation that produces offspring with abnormal variation from its parents.

Pomologically, there is this added twist. Apples are propagated by grafting, which produces genetically identical trees. An apple sport does not just differ from its two parents, but from itself, or at least its graft antecedent.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Apples on the web: The Fruit Gardener

What could be better than an opinionated catalog of apple reviews, sometimes blunt, sometimes wrong, never boring?

Why, two such collections, each with a different take.

At The Fruit Gardener a blogger named Eric is busy cataloging and rating apples of all kinds. Eric lives a northwest of Albany, New York, and has access to some great varieties.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Kiku vs. Fuji smackdown

I wouldn't normally do this. You see, Kiku, at left, is Fuji. It's a minor variant, a genetic mutation called a sport.
Heavily marketed Kiku, at left, is really just the brand name for Fuji Kiku Fubrax. A regular Fuji is at right.
Sports typically have better color, or ripen earlier, or bear better, or have other qualities that recommend them to growers.

Only rarely is there any appreciable difference in flavor, with a unique name to differentiate the sport from the sported. The name is the claim that calls for an apples-to-apples comparison.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The apple trees sleep

The dreams of the trees mass like gray smoke on the slope of Punkatasset Hill, at Hutchins Farm in Concord, Massachusetts, earlier today.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Kiku

This large apple, slightly conical, has next to no ribbing. Its streaky red blush, over yellow, is accented with many tan lenticels.

It's firm in hand, with a glossy peel and a sweet cidery aroma with floral notes.

Kiku's flesh is crisp and coarse-grained, light yellow and very juicy. It is sweet and light with a little tempering tartness behind the scenes.