Arkansas black mistake

I seem to have a Arkansas Black tree which was supposed to be a Macintosh. It just started to give me some apples what do people use them for? The flavor is pretty strong not sure how to describe it.

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I like the taste of AB fresh from the tree if left hanging long enough. Bill

My understanding is that it’s a long-term storage apple. When I lived in Arkansas a friend shared one with me in the spring, explaining that it had been stored all winter in the refrigerator crisper. I was 14 years old, and I thought it tasted like an apple. I warn’t overly impressed …

Today I understand a bit more how important that storage quality was to settlers on this continent, and how apples were, no doubt, prized for that. It is supposedly one of those apples which has a long way to go from being ripe to being good. It may be a Winesap seedling -Winesap seems to be a good sire, or dam, as the case may be, as it has thrown some impressive offspring.

I’ll refer you to the Orange Pippin entry on it. I like the Orange Pippin, and hope it’s as good as I think it is. Here’s the link:

http://www.orangepippin.com/apples/arkansas-black

If you open the link I hope you check out the comments people left of the reviews section. Note that they are mostly all southerners, and don’t hold it against them. I was a southerner once and I know it isn’t a fatal defect.

;- )M

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John,

It is a verry long keeper. I picked mine today (5b) as some were falling off and the rest came off just by lifting them at a 45 degree angle.

They are going into storage for TWO months. If you are using a frost free fridge put them in a tightly closed plastic bag on the bottom shelf.

Mike

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I have about 20 so I’ll put in fridge for two months and see. If I get into cider making more it may be a tree a save for that.

It supposed to be a very good eatong apple once it has had a chance to mature.

Check it occasionally. I plan on putting a slightly damp piece of paper towel to keep the moistue in the bag if needed.

Mike

Fellow that used to operate a local orchard told me one year that he had some ABs that had been in the cooler for a year and were still good to eat, but his wife had gotten tired of keeping fresh wet towels in the cooler to keep humidity levels up, and the ABs were shriveled a bit. While they were probably at their peak for flavor, they were unsightly enough that most of his customers wouldn’t touch them.

Just tried one out of the fridge. What a taste difference, I guess I’ll be keeping this tree.

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I’m pretty sure that the AB apple taste is not for everyone but it is high on my like list. It is my understanding that if left hanging on the tree longer, the taste will improve to the point of being able to eat right from the tree. I went by a local orchard in October and they had just picked some. They were good to me but probably needed some waiting time for most people. Any apple that I like this well and has been reported to be disease resistant has a place in my small orchard. Bill

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Back in the day though this must of been a treat for people trying to survive the winter without refrigerators ect. I ate my last Goldrush so this is a nice Apple to eat. The skin wasn’t hard to eat and the flavor was interesting. I’ll have to try and not eat them all for another month and see where the flavor leads to. It had a nice sweet and tart flavor I think, but different than I’ve had before.

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I can imagine that storage apples were virtually essential for settlers/free holders right up into the 20th century. An apple that could be packed in barrels between layers of sawdust, stuck in a dugout, and survive until dandelions and rhubarb made their appearance would be quite a treasure. How many other fruit could do that and still be edible, let alone somewhat palatable?

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