[NAFEX] first fruits (apples)

Ginda Fisher list at ginda.us
Wed Sep 17 13:28:00 EDT 2008

So the apple scions I grafted in 1999 to a random crab finally fruited, 
perhaps as a result of some nearby trees having been removed.  (Although 
the crab fruited reliable every year before and since.)  I got set from 
three types of apples, and bagged between 50 and 100 this spring.

As the season progressed, a bunch fell in June.  Then critters started 
eating the fruit.  The first time I noticed the problem I found a plastic 
bag cut in a thousand places with little teeth marks.  After that, I mostly 
found empty bags on the ground.  (Critters are clever, I guess.)  They ate 
all the red apples a month or so ago.  I got half of the last one, which 
was okay, in an unripe-apple sort of way.  More recently they started on 
the yellow Ashmead's Kernals.  Last night I removed an empty bag and a bag 
with a half-eaten apple from the tree.  I washed the half-apple, and 
carefully removed all the flesh that touched the tooth marks, then I ate 
the rest myself.

Not fully ripe, but a pretty decent apple, nonetheless.  

I picked the 4 remaining fruits last night, on the theory that slightly 
unripe fruit is better than fatter critters.

For whatever reason, the Jonathon in the front yard still carries perhaps 
50 nice-looking bagged fruits.  I think I'll let them ripen a bit more 
before picking.  Last year I got three fruits from it, one very small and 
the others tiny.

Overall, disappointing in a way, but also sort of exciting.
eastern Mass., zone 6

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