Stella Otto: The Backyard Fruit Gardener

Today's Tip: Mow vegetation short around the base of fruit trees and bushes to reduce winter habitat for rodents.

Category Archives: Apples

Choosing Apple Varieties for Your Home Orchard

The end result of June Drop and proper fruit thinning. Apple

Octo­ber is National Apple Month; time to cel­e­brate the crunch­ing, munch­ing great fla­vor of our all-American fruit! For some folks that means a trip to the local u-pick, cider mill, or farm­ers’ mar­ket. For oth­ers, maybe you, it is an entice­ment to grow a few apple trees right at home. Plan­ning is one of the keys […]

Thinning Apples for the Time-Challenged Home Orchardist

luscious fruit

If you have an over­abun­dance of apple fruitlets, you can thin excess fruit by hand. It is pre­cise, but time con­sum­ing. Another way to thin excess fruit is with the use of Sevin™ (car­baryl) insec­ti­cide. It is an insec­ti­cide that also mim­ics the nat­ural plant hor­mone, auxin, that reg­u­lates plant growth and devel­op­ment. When applied between […]

Apples of Uncommon Character—Book Review

Book Review Title: Apples of Uncom­mon Char­ac­ter Author: Rowan Jacob­sen Strong points: If you are a “foodie” look­ing for new taste expe­ri­ences this may be the book for you. One hun­dred twenty three apple vari­eties, heir­loom and mod­ern, are described as if each apple were a fine wine. Art­ful yet accu­rate pho­tos raise this book to coffee […]

Apples for the 21st Century—Book Review

apple varieties, heirloom apples, stating a home orchard, fruit variety tesitng, apple rootstock

Book Review   Title: Apple for the 21st Cen­tury Author: War­ren Man­hart Strong points: With a title that would lead one to think this book is ori­ented mainly toward the mod­ern com­mer­cial apple indus­try and the super mar­ket apple, Apples for the 21st Cen­tury delves into a pleas­antly sur­pris­ing, broad-based list of both heir­loom and mod­ern varieties. […]

Old Southern Apples: A comprehensive History and Description of Varieties for Collectors, Growers, and Fruit Enthusiasts, 2nd Ed—Book Review

Old Southern Apples Creighton Lee Calhoun, Jr.

Book Review Title: Old South­ern Apples: A com­pre­hen­sive His­tory and Descrip­tion of Vari­eties for Col­lec­tors, Grow­ers, and Fruit Enthu­si­asts. Revised and Expanded Author: Creighton Lee Cal­houn, Jr. Strong points: Old South­ern Apples is filled with the regional soci­ol­ogy, the sci­ence, and the sto­ries that make apple grow­ing inter­est­ing and excit­ing. It is an exten­sively well-researched work of […]

Celebrate National Apple Month

Nationa Apple Month

Labor Day came early this year and with it we usher in the start of fall fruit har­vest.  Sep­tem­ber is National Apple Month and the apples are indeed ripen­ing for pick­ing. Did you know these bits of apple trivia? The apple blos­som is Michigan’s state flower. Apple leads pack of favorite pies; ahead of pump­kin, chocolate, […]

Apples of North America—Book Review

Apples of North America

Book Review   Title: Apples of North Amer­ica Author: Ton Bur­ford Strong points: This is a fab­u­lous com­pendium of note­wor­thy apples from an expert who truly knows his apple vari­eties up close and per­sonal! Many pre­vi­ous books on fruit vari­eties were often mainly ency­clo­pe­dias of dry characteristics—color, shape, ripen­ing season—rather than the real meat you need to […]