Sunday, December 30, 2012

Day 51: An Apple a Day

The top is a "Winter Banana," the bottom a "Pennsylvania-grown Baldwin."
Today was all about apples. Well, okay, there were a couple of cherries, too, but mostly I spent the morning scanning these totally awesome apples from 100-year-old how-to manuals. They're all about how to plant your orchards, prune, harvest, spray and generally make a living from fruit trees. I can sometimes get caught up (in a good way) in the books and papers than I scan. For example, there's the "rather new" [red] delicious variety, which appears "very promising for commercial planing." There's a very funny section on marketing to different clientele. And I love all the different varieties of apples: The Esopus, "when packed in attractive packages, [can] bring a fancy price on the market;" the Westfield, which is also called the Westfield Seek-No-Further, or commonly know as just "the Seek;" the Stayman Winesap that originated from a seed grown by Dr. J. Stayma of Leavenworth, Kansas in 1866, and on and on. It's actually a bit sad looking at the 60+ different apples described but only recognizing three or four from today's markets. I'll have to pay more attention next time I go to an orchard or farmer's market to see if I can find any fun heirloom varieties.

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