Apple Picking Tips:
Picking: When picking the apples off the tree, avoid throwing them down into a bag–as can be tempting to do–this certainly will bruise them.
Good apple pickers tend to start with the lower apples, so as to avoid smashing them with a ladder or while climbing up to reach the upper branches.
The best picking technique is to give the apple a twist and pull, so that you don’t harm the remaining spur.
Apples on the ground should be harvested first if you own your own tree, and these apples, likely to be bruised, should be stored separately–yes the old adage is true, a bad apple really will spoil the bunch.
Knowing what’s in season:
Knowing when apples are ripe shouldn’t be difficult, below is a guide of when various varieties are in peak.
In general though, apples are ripe as they begin to fall from the tree, although, you may want to pick them slightly before then, as apples that are slightly hard (tart tasting) store longer.
Another way to monitor for ripeness is to watch for color change, and to know that the easier the apple can be picked off the branches, the more ripe it is–unripe apples don’t remove from their stem easily.
When apples are ripe:
|July to the middle of August||August to September:||Late September to October||The end of fall/November|
· Geneva Early
· Vista Bella
· “Late Lodi”
· Red Free
· Mollie’s Delicious
· Swiss Gourmet (Arlet)
· Sweet Sixteen
· Honey Crisp
· Grimes Golden
· Starking Delicious
· Red Delicious
· Golden Delicious
· Blushing Golden
· Granny Smith
· Hudson’s Golden Gem
· Virginia Gold
· Golden Russet
· Stayman Winesap
· Turley Winesap
· Ida Red
· Clearwater Gold
· Arkansas Black
Washing: Don’t actually clean off the apple until right before you intent to consume or use it, keeping it “dirty” from the tree helps keep it fresh as long as possible.
Cutting: An Apple cutter/corer, like shown below, can substantially reduce the the time to cut and prepare apples. Click to purchase.
Keep sliced apples from browning: By adding a squeeze of citrus juice to them, but particularly lemon, or putting them in cold water with some lemon juice squeezed into it.
Apple Storage: Remove the overripe or rotted fruit, as that will contribute to the spoilage of the rest of the apples.
Always store apples in a cool, dry, dark place, as cold as refrigerator temperatures if possible, to keep the apples crisp and ripe the longest.