There’s an apartment complex near me with several apple trees out front. Each is a different variety, so clearly put there intentionally, but also clearly abandoned. I forage up some of the fruits every year; here’s today’s haul!
They are tiny, pock-marked, and misshapen, but they still taste just as good.
Skip your spray schedules and one day you too can grow apples like this.
Reminds me of the apples of my youth. Large standard trees so we picked by collecting them as windfalls. Cut out the pad parts and eat what we could salvage.
We were happy with our harvest.
One day after peeling and cutting some really bad apples (only a few good slices out of each?) I came across a perfect apple. No bug or disease issues. I marveled at it and wondered why home grown fruit could not all look like this. That is when I vowed that some day I would grow better looking fruit. This led to taking Horticulture at college, working at a commercial orchard and now having a home orchard with 22 assorted fruits.
A few years ago while walking with my children we came across an abandoned farm orchard (house now gone) and picked apples like those in your photo. We found a lot of old striped apples I could not identify except for some snow apples.
What a haul! Those apples were put to use in apple sauce. Sadly I found my children and the neighbor kids who came with us did not know how to eat unsprayed apples. “Always look before biting” so you don’t get a coddling moth larvae. Such knowledge is now lost on the youth of today who only experience perfect apples to eat (Luckily my pocket knife helped them out). Kids today do not even carry pocket knifes!
Unfortunately, most kids today are not ALLOWED to carry a pocket knife - either because of misguided school requirements or overprotective parents who worry about them hurting themselves.
Did I cut myself? Yeah, on multiple occasions…don’t know that any ever required sutures (though some might have left less of a scar if we’d had them stitched closed)
There a few apple trees that are producing fruit around a few shopping centers and office buildings. I figured these were mislabeled when they were bought and then planted. One place has a golden delicious apple tree with pretty nice looking fruit on it. Of course it looks good because there are not a lot of other fruit trees around it to spread diseases. I would think. The Canadian geese love the ones that fall on the ground. It is funny to watch them trying to eat them and scooting them all over the ground.
Golden delicious and similar wild apples around here tend to be bothered less than other strains by insects. Somebody with land, maybe a person on this forum, should start a breeding program to develop good apples that resist insects. I’ve never heard of a breeding program trying to accomplish this.
Given the huge market for organic fruit, even less than pristine, a patent of a great tasting variety that didn’t require pesticide to produce sound fruit in the humid region would have to be worth a fortune. Of course, I’ve no idea if such a variety is possible, but there is a lot of variability on which ones insects prefer.
I definitely agree with this article. The less we spray the more nutrition I think the fruit has and the healthier the tree will be. If we keep spraying these trees the natural immunity system of the tree is not needed as much. So the tree gets sort of lazy at producing any defense. Maybe I’m wrong but a healthy tree makes better fruit and more tasty fruit as well.