We picked about 7.5 bushels of apples from our late-bearing (Granny Smith?) tree. Not only was this more of an abundance than ever before, but the apples were larger and better-shaped than we've ever experienced. And we didn't completely strip the tree. What a fruit year!
Unfortunately they just aren't of marketable quality. Here you can see both sooty blotch (thanks Rachel for identifying that!) and apple scab, which is on the entire crop.
|Apple scab and sooty blotch|
They are just cosmetic flaws, but I doubt even an organic grocer would stock these. Americans are just so conditioned to having perfect-looking produce. I don't spray with fungicides, thus you get fungi.
Obviously there are more apples than any home grower could ever use. I find this quite sad. I doubt that even if I could locate a local food bank that accepts fresh foods, they would take them.
OK, what will we do with them? The Kitchen Goddess took 25 and canned 6 pints of applesauce.
|Unsweetened apple sauce|
Great, that leaves just 1,342 to go. Next weekend we will press 2 - 3 bushels into cider for fermenting. That should make 5 gallons of hard cider, enough to last us a long time. If we are energetic, we'll press one or two more gallons for fresh consumption (it goes bad fast). I wonder if you can freeze soft cider?
Sadly, I'm expecting that half the crop will just get dumped in the woods. But what can we do?
Thanks for reading! And thanks to Dave at Our Happy Acres, our host of Harvest Monday. Be sure to read all this week's submissions.