Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Harbingers of an early harvest


The first apples have come early this year.

The wonderful fresh Vista Bella apples (right) usually come in the third or fourth week of July, though since the growing season is so early this year I thought we might see them sooner.

I was completely surprised however to see Lodi (left) at the Arlington's Farmers Market today. If Lodi they be--I scarcely recognize them. Their shape and size and color is not what I expect. They are usually small but today tower over the Vista Bella.

(Update: That's because the "Lodi" apples I have been comparing them to were actually Yellow Transparents! As explained here. Sorry for the confusion! Still awful early for Lodi, though.)

I'm very glad to see them both--I missed Lodi [Yellow Transparent] last summer completely. However the shift in the growing season feels topsy-turvy.

One grower told me today that McIntosh would likely be ready in mid August. That's usually about when I've found Lodi for sale.

Whatever the story is with Lodi this year, those apples are unripe, as revealed by the white color of their seeds. The flavor is not as balanced and fine so early, but I'll buy some later if I get the chance.

Keep your eyes open this year, and assume nothing. The farmers will harvest fruit when ripe, whenever that may be--or even earlier.

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