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Msilva

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #50 on: April 07, 2015, 09:12:41 PM »
What's the thought on Columnar apple trees. Looks interesting and space saver just wondering about taste?

jcaldeira

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #51 on: April 07, 2015, 10:35:25 PM »
What's the thought on Columnar apple trees. Looks interesting and space saver just wondering about taste?

I am curious to learn now much pruning must be done to keep the columnar shape.  During my high school years 40+ years ago, I worked on an apple farm and the full-size trees were spaced 8 or so meters apart.

Now, they are typicaly spaced 2 or 3 meters apart in tight rows and kept much smaller with newer dwarfing rootstocks such as the Malling 9 ("M9"), which creates a tree only 25% of the full size.
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LivingParadise

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #52 on: May 06, 2015, 01:25:47 PM »
I am not a snob about almost any fruit, but I am a super snob about apples. A fresh-picked Honeycrisp is my top, so far. Incredibly juicy, sweet, crisp, large, and with a strong secondary taste of flowers.

I actually started growing some in my window way down here in the Keys from seed, but sadly I got distracted with some of my other tropical plants and forgot to water and they died! So sad, as they were doing very well! I will try again, because it was so nice to see a healthy apple tree down here... even though I of course have no idea if I can keep one alive for years, much less be able to fruit one!

Ambrosia is pretty good too, when fresh. I was growing one of those too before my drought of forgetfulness...

The sad thing is, people often have no idea what an apple really tastes like, because the ones in the store are picked at off times, and sit for weeks if not months, coated in a thick layer of wax. They taste nothing like the very same variety ripe off the tree. So it's not really fair to compare varieties based on store-bought fruit (just as is true for tropical fruits, which taste almost nothing at all like their store bought versions). Case in point, I waited for 4 years to be able to get my hands on a SweeTango. I was so excited to finally find one in a store, but although it seemed firm on the outside, it was mealy, bland, and truly disgusting! I doubt that is a really fair assessment of the cultivar as a whole, otherwise it never would have gained such a buzz.

Apples make my world complete. If you can't get a hold of fresh ones, I do think Granny Smith are the closest to retaining actual apple flavor and crispness in the off-seasons. But none of them are really worth it if not fresh, and preferably right off a tree or from the farm of that tree, picked just the day before.

Food is food, but a truly great apple is like experiencing heaven on Earth, while the rest are like walking on the ground.

stuartdaly88

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #53 on: May 06, 2015, 03:03:59 PM »
Apples and pears I buy in the shops are sometimes crappy but the better ones are pretty representative of fresh quality. Maybe this is because ceres valley where they grow apples un my country is only like 10 hours away?
The good brands I buy in store are normally excellent. Fresh off the tree may be better but not noticeably so to me. Some of the apples I eat are dripping with juice after first bite I love those ones:)

I always thought mealy apples were a type but mealy means they are old?
I find the reds are far far more often not crisp but soft and mealy.
Pink lady is crisp but got reds taste:) iv never had a pink lady fresh off the tree but if it's better than it is already wow!
Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.
-Jean-Jacques Rousseau

jcaldeira

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #54 on: May 06, 2015, 04:00:45 PM »
Age of the apple has a lot to do with crispness and taste.   Buying 'in season' is always best, although in the U.S. we can get good New Zealand apples off season.  In the supermarket, always buy apples that have the stems on (riper).

By the way, I did a little work in Ceres, Western Cape, on an apple farm approximately 12 years ago.  They also grow nice pears.  They could grow even more if not for the water shortage.

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LivingParadise

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #55 on: May 06, 2015, 06:14:09 PM »
Apples and pears I buy in the shops are sometimes crappy but the better ones are pretty representative of fresh quality. Maybe this is because ceres valley where they grow apples un my country is only like 10 hours away?
The good brands I buy in store are normally excellent. Fresh off the tree may be better but not noticeably so to me. Some of the apples I eat are dripping with juice after first bite I love those ones:)

I always thought mealy apples were a type but mealy means they are old?
I find the reds are far far more often not crisp but soft and mealy.
Pink lady is crisp but got reds taste:) iv never had a pink lady fresh off the tree but if it's better than it is already wow!



Well, it does matter from which store you shop, in what season, and in what region. If you are buying temperate fruits in a non-temperate zone, or out of season - which sadly covers a large portion of people if not the majority in the US - then it's not going to be close to the original. For instance, how many kids around the US think they hate fruit and vegetables because the only options they get at school are 2 year old Red Delicious apples and Cavendish bananas, and some ancient canned gray vegetables stewed in margarine? Naturally they choose the tater tots, which at least are crisp and have some kid of flavor (if artificial)...

Some varieties of apple are mealy all the time, and some apples only get mealy when they are old. Out of season, pretty much all apples found in a supermarket will be mealy, except for Granny Smith which will be less so (if not exactly crisp).

If an apple does not run juice out of it when you bite down on the first crunch (and if it does not make a crunch!), it is not good, and probably not even close to fresh. That also means it has far fewer of the nutrients it had when it WAS fresh, to make the eating of value. Granted some varieties are known as better for baking, and some better for eating, but apples should be very crisp and juicy. That's how they are when they come off the tree. And they certainly don't come off the tree with wax on them!

If you can buy apples in season and from an organic farm, they will taste better, and be a lot healthier for you. The ones typically in supermarkets are loaded with more pesticides than any other fruit - 48 pesticides still found on the fruit even after washing! - many of which are carcinogens or cause neurological disease. The reason for those chemicals is in large part to keep apples looking appealing for a full year after they were picked - which is unnecessary if you buy them locally and in season.

Here's some more info about that:
http://www.forbes.com/sites/bethhoffman/2012/04/23/five-reasons-to-eat-organic-apples-pesticides-healthy-communities-and-you/

stuartdaly88

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #56 on: May 07, 2015, 11:31:41 AM »
Age of the apple has a lot to do with crispness and taste.   Buying 'in season' is always best, although in the U.S. we can get good New Zealand apples off season.  In the supermarket, always buy apples that have the stems on (riper).

By the way, I did a little work in Ceres, Western Cape, on an apple farm approximately 12 years ago.  They also grow nice pears.  They could grow even more if not for the water shortage.

All the apples here have the stem attached firmly. We used to when we were young recite the alphabet while twisting the stem off and the letter you land on when it comes off will be your future partner ha ha weird things kids do...

That's awesome you worked in ceres ;D your comment about pears reminded me what an amazing pear I had the other day (and i used to dislike pears!) so I started a pear thread to suss out the other good varieties:)
Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.
-Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Doglips

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #57 on: May 12, 2015, 04:09:19 PM »
I believe that mealy-ness is a function of ripeness when picked and storage time and temperature.   I don't know if I've ever seen an exact formula.  I think cold storage on under ripe is culprit personally. Very disappointing since it can be difficult to detect at the store.  I tend to dodge cold peaches especially.

Citradia

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #58 on: June 08, 2015, 07:55:37 AM »
I have red delicious and Macintosh and Rome but I'm most proud of my native crabapples, angustifolia, coronaria,and glabrata. I got the latter two varieties from the wild seed and angustifolia from FL. Here's a pic of my glabrata in bloom.


Grandmotherbear

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #59 on: June 14, 2015, 09:18:59 PM »
Hello to all apple lovers, especially you fellow Floridians. I am just northwest of Lake Okeechobee and I wanted to share with you a wonderful website I discovered  about 6-7 years ago. www.kuffelcreek.com He grows apples in the tropics - he himself started out growing them in California, and for years he had a picture of his backyard full of fruiting apple trees and the thermometer at 113. You read his explanation of chill hours and it turns out that what chill hours do is synchronize bloom, fruit set and harvest.  Important if you're a commercial grower, less important if you just want apples whenever the tree provides them. He says in the hot zones you can have bloom, ripe fruit, and green fruit all on the tree at the same time. He also lists his favorite hot weather apples, the ones that taste good and do well, and Fiji does grow well in the heat, - but doesn't fruit till it's 5 years old. We had a 3 in 1 low chill apple that produced a flush of Anna apples and the raccoons got them just as they started to ripen. That straggled along and died a few years later. I have discovered that this sugar sand doesn't work for most of my fruits- so now I am growing them in 35 gallon containers. I bought Grandfatherbear another 3 in 1 apple at his request, but this time it's in a pot. This year I planted summer champion, pound sweet, another William's Pride  and brogden (low chill from Alabama). Last year I planted King David, Arkansas Black, Hoover (low chill from coastal SC) Victorian Limbertwig, White Winter Pearman, and Golden Grimes.  Now, Golden Grimes is my favorite. Doesn't ship well because it is so tender, but tastes wonderful and makes translucent applesauce. It was a parent of Golden Delicious.Wealthy and Terry Winter Keeper also. I also have a William's pride that's a few years older-maybe 4 or 5 years old?   I strongly encourage you to visit the Kuffel Creek website and then check old the book Old Southern Apples by Lee Calhoun. It has guided a LOT of my choices. I bought the Kuffel Creek book about growing in the city years back- really need to buy his book about growing apples in the tropics now. He has gone into the apple in the tropics business bigtime- he is consulting with tropical African and SE Asian growers. I bought  most of my apples from www.bighorsecreekfarm.com or Raintree Nursery. Highly recommend both their businesses. Next year's order from Bighorsecreekfarm is the Rev Morgan, a low chill apple from South Texas, more Golden Grimes, King David, and ....I forgot the last variety. I'm sure I ordered 4.
I'm just a newby here but I've been working on my apples for quite a while now. Pettingill, my original 3 in 1 anna, dorset, ein schmeir, yellow transparent, and separate trees of anna and dorset died within a few weeks of planting in the ground here. As I said, I'm now doing the 35 gallon pots, and they are living and every now and then I get bloom- and have some apples started on the Terry Winter (which lost green fruit in a winter gale)

Oh, columnar apples- I gave Scarlet Sentineland Golden Sentinel to my dd and family when they moved to their townhouse in South Carolina. They planted them in small half barrels- I really am not even sure they were 12 gallons. As long as I got up there to fertilize them in the spring and they got watered onc a week they would bear a handful of fruit apiece. The Golden did grow one branch like a second trunk. I think they may have gotten more with larger pots and more fertilizer. I try to add 8-8-8 to my apples, and keep Grandfatherbear from applying Miraclegro- because I read somewhere they don't like nitrogen (but nitrogen degrades quickly in our Florida heat- I have taken to giving lots of nitrogen tomy Irish potatoes in winter, and my yield went up from 1-2 per plant to 6-10 per plant!) Maybe I should rethink the Miraclegro ban.

gunnar429

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #60 on: June 15, 2015, 10:48:04 AM »
interesting website....but I didn't see any info on humid areas....that's my biggest concern (fungal disease, etc.)

Which trees have you fruited in FL as of yet (if any)?  Thanks
~Jeff

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Tropheus76

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #61 on: June 17, 2015, 07:48:19 AM »
Wow, I wasn't aware there were that many low chill apple varieties available for us here in FL. I get fruit off my Anna and einschmeir, and blooms off my tropic sweet. I had dorsetts but they both kinda went down this year and I replaced them with persimmons. I do have two spots open so I will look into those other varieties and see whats available.

jcaldeira

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #62 on: June 17, 2015, 03:06:15 PM »
I had the pleasure of working on an apple farming development project in Ukraine after the Soviet Union collapse.  Here are a few photos of their propagation methods.

They were using dwarfing rootstocks, mostly M26 and M9.  In the spring, they grafted onto bare sticks of rootstock - no roots.  The roots would develop at the same time the graft wound heals.

When planting, the grafted rootstocks were prepared with a rooting hormone.  The wet rootstocks were also dipped in water-absorbent crystals to prevent drying out while roots develop.

Planting was performed by first plowing the field.  Then two guys would make wet holes and several women following would insert the grafted sticks. Other women would tamp down the soil and seal the hole.

 

The trees were trained in a columnar fashion.
 

The mature trees were planted less than two meters apart.


I don't recall the varieties they were planting, but the graft wood was mostly smuggled in from Poland and no royalties paid.
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Slicko

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #63 on: June 18, 2015, 01:03:22 AM »
G'day Grandmotherbear

A couple of videos worth having look at are those on the work Kuffle Creek nursery is doing with growing apples in tropical climates. It gives those of us I hotter regions hope that we can grow the varieties that we love to eat.

http://www.davewilson.com/community-and-resources/videos/apples-low-chill-socal-part-1

http://www.davewilson.com/community-and-resources/videos/apples-low-chill-socal-part-2

Grandmotherbear

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #64 on: June 19, 2015, 08:20:34 AM »
Wow, I wasn't aware there were that many low chill apple varieties available for us here in FL. I get fruit off my Anna and einschmeir, and blooms off my tropic sweet. I had dorsetts but they both kinda went down this year and I replaced them with persimmons. I do have two spots open so I will look into those other varieties and see whats available.
King David fruited but the raccoons got em. Terry Winter Keeper set a batch of fruit we lost in a winter windstorm.  Had several blossom when nothing else was blooming to hand fertilize with.
I originally typed a whole long response into my cellphone Tuesday afternoon- I see it never went thru now.

Grandmotherbear

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #65 on: June 19, 2015, 08:21:19 AM »
Wow, I wasn't aware there were that many low chill apple varieties available for us here in FL. I get fruit off my Anna and einschmeir, and blooms off my tropic sweet. I had dorsetts but they both kinda went down this year and I replaced them with persimmons. I do have two spots open so I will look into those other varieties and see whats available.
King David fruited but the raccoons got em. Terry Winter Keeper set a batch of fruit we lost in a winter windstorm.  Had several blossom when nothing else was blooming to hand fertilize with.
I originally typed a whole long response into my cellphone Tuesday afternoon- I see it never went thru now.

Slicko

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Re: apples anyone
« Reply #66 on: June 20, 2015, 12:32:24 AM »
Hi Grandmotherbear,

I went and bought the e-book after reading your post about Kuffel Creek. I had seen a youtube video on what is being done there especially with the schools.

The e-book certainly opened up my eyes and I am now hoping to get some scion wood to add to my Anna and Tropic Sweet.

Mick


 

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