describing apples

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Mo
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describing apples

Post by Mo »

I have various eating apples growing in my orchard.
When I give them away I try to describe them
James Grieve - sweet but sharp
Cox - ?aromatic ? perhaps
Lord Lambourne - like Cox
Kidds orange - like Cox but crisper
Laxton's Exquisite - sweet and crisp
Worcester - red
I really can't descibe the taste of a Worcester, not sure it has any. The LaxtonsE hasn't much either.
But when I put them at the end of the drive the Worcester go first. very pretty on the tree.

My grand-daughter was climbing the Bramley to pick a cooking apple to munch
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albertajune
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Re: describing apples

Post by albertajune »

Lucky lady having so many apples. Worcester is also my favourite apple but don't know how to describe them. They have a distinct sweet fruity crispness that only the Cox also has. An old English apple that is not seen much today. Looking up worcester pearmain it is described as having a mild strawberry flavour.
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Mo
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Re: describing apples

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We planted an orchard for a family of 5, wanting apples through the season.
Back in the early 70s Worcester was the most common supermarket apple. Easy to keep in cold storage. Not too easily bruised*. We read that it had a lot better taste straight from the tree than from storage and supermarket so we planted it as a first early. Can't say I think much of it, certainly not compared with James Grieve which matures at the same time and Lord Lambourne which comes just after.
*The other early Laxton's Exquisite, bruises if you look at it, Worcester can fall to the ground and be OK if it hasn't hit branches on the way.
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Mo
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Re: describing apples

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You used to be able to get many varieties that have gone from the shops.
Someone who buys my apples IAO choir funds says he can only get Kidds Orange from me now. I think that is my favourite, Cox favour and crisp texture, best in November but keeps well past Christmas (though I prefer it stewed by then).
The other apple you used to get around the beginning of May was Sturmer Pippin from New Zealand. Another favourite. My choir friend says you can't even get it in NZ now.
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manda
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Re: describing apples

Post by manda »

I had a look on one of the fruit tree main sites ...You can still get a Sturmer Apple in NZ but looks like it's largely available on the South Island (which is great for us as we want a good cider apple :-D ). If your friend is in NZ suggest looking up Waimea Nurseries they will give an idea where a local stockist is if they wanted one.

We've also got a couple of young trees as we're setting up an orchard - we've got an old apple Peasgood Nonsuch which is a great all round cooking apple and another good apple for making cider.
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Re: describing apples

Post by Freeranger »

I used to live in Worcestershire in the middle of an orchard full of Pearmains. My recollection is of a very strong, sweet, overall fruity (hints of pear and said strawberry) apple, not wassy at all.
They are quite good cookers as well as eating fresh from the tree.
There used to be someone at the Birmingham farmers market that sold a range of heritage apples. It was amazing to taste some of those but I couldn't find them anywhere else and eventually forgot what they were. Incredible flavours that we sacrificed for shelf life, particularly the sour ones which bruise easily.
I also remember very strong marketing of the totally pointless French Golden Delicious (remember Le Crunch?) that helped kill of the Worcestershire orchards.
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Mo
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Re: describing apples

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That's the thing for supermarkets, shelf life and travel. Quite different from what a home grower is looking for.
I don't know if he goes to NZ regularly, but he said that when he was there they said that the Sturmer orchards had been grubbed up.
What makes a good cider apple then.
I've not tried Worcester as a cooker. I know a lot of the eaters cook well and give a bit of variety.
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Re: describing apples

Post by Freeranger »

I have't tried but I'm told a blend of eating and crab apples make a good cider. The recommendation was 1 sweet, 1 sharp and 1 crab in the blend.
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Re: describing apples

Post by Spreckly »

This is an interesting thread Mo. The labels have vanished from our three apple trees, but I think the oldest one is a James Grieve. I have been picking them slowly and preparing them for the freezer. Of the other two trees, one suddenly sported brown shrivelled leaves a few weeks ago, so I cut them off, and the apples are the size of a small tomato! The other tree has not born fruit yet, and these two are about four years old.
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Mo
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Re: describing apples

Post by Mo »

I like the James Grieve as an eater as well as stewed. I pick it green, we read that you should pick it as soon as it parts easily or it will go mushy, Very sharp to eat green but adds sweetness as it ripens so I eat it yellow.
Took a car-boot full out on my walk today so the others went away with bags full. Plus some windfall pears.
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Re: describing apples

Post by fabindia »

Dabinett - so bitter/sour almost inedible but used widely in cider making. We have one in our little orchard and it is always the latest apple tree to come into blossom.

Mo - would you be willing to share some cuttings from your trees with others on this site? Apple grafting is pretty simple and there are some excellent videos on YouTube that take you through the process. You need pencil sized pieces of branch and root stocks which are widely available and cheap enough.

I'm pretty obsessed with apples - they are so complex. You simply can't plant a pip and get an edible apple. Every single Bramley apple in the world has come from a single original tree, even if it is a cutting from a cutting, from a cutting, etc.

I'm not sure if we will get back to Thailand in November so if we are still here, I would be happy to post a few cuttings from our Dabinett tree if any one wants some. (The best time to take cuttings and do the grafting is probably January when the trees are dormant with no sap rising).
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Mo
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Re: describing apples

Post by Mo »

fabindia wrote:Mo - would you be willing to share some cuttings from your trees with others on this site? Apple grafting is pretty simple and there are some excellent videos on YouTube that take you through the process. You need pencil sized pieces of branch and root stocks which are widely available and cheap enough.

Yes, though I've always thought of my apples as quite common, they certainly were the standard ones stocked and grown locally when we planted the orchard in the early 70s.
I have (in approx order of picking)
Laxtons Exquisite, crisp, sweet but soon looses texture and flavour
Laxtons Superb, aromatic, softer, odd taste unless picked at just the right time
Worcester,
James Grieve,
Lord Lambourne, like Cox but softer & earlier
Cox,
Bramley Cooker
Kidds Orange like Cox but better, crisp, best in November, also cooks well but doesn't 'drop' keeps longer than Bramley.
Chivers
Crispin Cook or eat, late ripener, keeps longer than Bramley
Granny Smith Doesn't taste like an imported Granny. Cooks ok, keeps longer than
Bramley. A grower friend said 'they saw you coming' when Jim said
he'd bought it.

fabindia wrote:I'm pretty obsessed with apples - they are so complex.
. I think I must be too. Such different flavours, even the same tree different seasons can taste different. Yet some people only go by appearance. And it really makes me wince to see people treating them roughly, banging them together in a bag.
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Mo
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Re: describing apples

Post by Mo »

I've just posted an invitation on our village community page for people to come and pick, with link to a Virgingiving site.
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manda
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Re: describing apples

Post by manda »

Mo wrote:I don't know if he goes to NZ regularly, but he said that when he was there they said that the Sturmer orchards had been grubbed up.

{cry} {cry} Waimea said they do the variety but I wonder if their website is up to date ....I'm going to have to check with them now

Mo wrote:What makes a good cider apple then.

High levels of acid, tannin, or sugar so they ferment well.
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