Monday, August 25, 2014

So long, Phil's Apples

One of my favorite U-picks is out of business and up for sale.

Phil's in 2008
For sale in 2014

I took this photo in front of the property last week.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Red Free (Redfree)

I'm here for a second bite at Red Free, a gorgeously colored early variety that is on the large side of medium-sized.

It's oblate and really with no ribbing save around the base, which has the usual bumps.

The glossy blush runs from streaky to a deep cherry red over a green-tinted yellow.

The tiny lenticels are almost invisible. Meanwhile the apple is firm in hand and has only a faint sweet aroma.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Tydeman's Early Worcester *

The woman who sold me these medium-sized apples warned me twice they would be tart.

Tydeman's Early is round and only slightly ribbed, with a crimson blush that ranges from dark and saturated to streaky.

Many light lenticels of varying size make the surface of this apple a busy place.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Pick no apple before its time

Apples on the tree, where they belong, at Hutchins Farm yesterday.
To everything there is a season, and today's post is dedicated to farmers who know when that is.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Lodi vs. Yellow Transparent smackdown

Lodi (L) and Yellow Transparent. These early varieties are sometimes confused.
I have been trying to get these guys together for years. They are related.

Although both are among the earliest varieties of the summer, their respective seasons are so short, and their shelf lives so brief, that they rarely overlap.

Let's see who is the better apple.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Before the apples are ripe

Apples are ripening "beyond this point" today at Hutchins Farm in Concord, Mass.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The Gala–Braeburn family

Despite the return of local apples last week, July was a month when I ate a lot of imports from the southern hemisphere.

As it turns out, many of the apples that drew me last month—16 of them—were offspring of Gala and Braeburn, two New Zealand varieties that have become supermarket staples here in the States.
Gala
Braeburn
(Yes, I am keeping track this year.)

Maybe you've been making similar choices. Here are mine.