Apples in the tree in January

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Dicky

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Hi there,

I work at a university in Nottingham where there is an apple tree. This tree has had loads of apples on it since the end of the season. All the leaves have gone leaving just the fruit.

They are quite small apples, i'm not sure what variety they are.
Ever heard if this? There certainly aren't any other apple trees around here baring fruit.

Dicky
 

Daze

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sound like crab apples. I don't think they are bearing now just left over. There is a couple feet of snow here on the ground in MT and my dads trees still have a few apples in them. I wouldn't eat them but they are there nun the less.
 

Daze

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I have been around fresh fruit my whole life as my father has tones of fruit trees of many different verities, and I have developed one golden rule for wine making.

If you wouldn't eat the fruit as fruit than don't make wine out of it

in other words if the apples are firm and have good flavor than by all means have a go, but if they are mushy or off tasting than the resulting fermented product will also be sub par. This same rule applies to under ripe fruit.
 

liquidavalon

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Daze said:
I have been around fresh fruit my whole life as my father has tones of fruit trees of many different verities, and I have developed one golden rule for wine making.

If you wouldn't eat the fruit as fruit than don't make wine out of it

in other words if the apples are firm and have good flavor than by all means have a go, but if they are mushy or off tasting than the resulting fermented product will also be sub par. This same rule applies to under ripe fruit.
On the other hand I have read and seen on documentaries that some of the most bitter, sour apples around makes some of the best cider around. And it was those types if 'cider' apples that makers in England and settlers in America first used and some still use today.

Now mushy, old or mouldy apples...that is a different story.

Edit: A good docunmentary that proves this point is called 'The Botany of Desire' free to watch on PBS. The first 20 min or so talks about apples and is fantastic.
 

Daze

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Now mushy, old or mouldy apples...that is a different story.
That was my point. He is talking about apples on a tree with no leaves so the fruit is probably not good anymore. yes sour and bitter can make for some nice ciders/wines. I like bitter and I like sour, it all depend son the flavor profile you are looking for. Under ripe fruit is typically flavorless so one wouldn't want to eat it as fruit.
 

liquidavalon

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Daze said:
If you wouldn't eat the fruit as fruit than don't make wine out of it
Oh ok...sorry. I was just commenting about the above quote, because there are some good cider apples that I wouldn't eat as fruit but they make great cider.
 
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Dicky

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The apples actually look pretty fine, strangely enough.
However, they belong to the university, and no doubt getting permission to take them would take ages and would be in need of health and safety rubbish.

Mmmmm, bureaucratic apples.

Dicky
 

gratus fermentatio

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Odds are those apples just didn't fall, I've seen this on several trees, even on the MacIntosh tree in my backyard. As to the variety, ask the groundskeepers, they should know.
Regards, GF.
 

truckjohn

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Just go get one and taste it... Should answer your questions.... or at least some of your questions....

If you have a refractometer handy - you can check the brix with only a few drops of juice from one apple.... If the brix is up in the 20's - then you got good cider making apples no matter how bitter or sour they taste....

There are many varieties of apples that just hang on the tree - and some of them keep getting better the longer they hang....

Thanks
 

truckjohn

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Just go get one and taste it... Should answer your questions.... or at least some of your questions....

If you have a refractometer handy - you can check the brix with only a few drops of juice from one apple.... If the brix is up in the 20's - then you got good cider making apples no matter how bitter or sour they taste....

There are many varieties of apples that just hang on the tree - and some of them keep getting better the longer they hang....

Thanks
 

Daze

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what has the temperature been??? if it has dropped below freezing and stayed there long enough for the apples to freeze than I would not even consider them but if it has stayed above freezing (keeping in mind a good hard frost where the apples have not frozen solid will make an apple sweeter) than they may still be good to use. I said it before and truckjohn has reiterated what I said if it is still good enough to eat than it is good enough to make in to cider.
 
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Dicky

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It has dropped below freezing a few times, this is England after all. It's pretty likely that they have been frozen solid a couple of times. But most of them look to be in pretty good condition.

Dicky
 

Daze

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if they have frozen solid they will be soft and mooshie. It takes a wile for apple on the tree to freeze so dropping below freezing a time or two is not the issue. We always weight until after the first hard frost before we use any of my dads apples
 

truckjohn

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Dicky

As we have said a couple times... There is only 1 way to find out... and you are the only one who can do it.... It will take you all of 10 minutes to find out....

Just go pick an apple and give it a taste.... Then.. Post back here with what it tastes like...

With some of the real bitter sharp "Cider" or semi-wild apples... Turning mushy after freezing them will degrade the Tannins - and the apples will all of a sudden taste magically delicious with a really nice balance between Sweet and Tart where they tasted horrible and acrid before.... The texture will be weird - you don't want to eat a bunch of them fresh - but they are fine for cider and especially jelly....

I have done that sort of thing a bunch of times successfully... Let those horrible, acrid apples sit on the tree till they turn brown and mushy well below freezing - and all of a sudden, the tannin degrades enough and the flavor blooms.... They make great jelly and cider....

Now.. If they taste bland and mushy with a hint of sweetness.. leave them for the birds....

Thanks
 

vinper

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So ,are crab apples good for cider? I dont like to eat them
 
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if the weather has complied correctly, they could actually be fine. average apple in a grocery store is ONE YEAR old. I've stored apples in a root cellar for several months and still seemed fresh.

on the flip side, the tree itself has been ripening the heck out of those apples, so no idea what they actually are like. I'd probably take a bit and be ready to spit it out quickly :)
 

dinnerstick

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So ,are crab apples good for cider? I dont like to eat them
crabs are all different but they tend to be high in sugar and very high in tannins (hence the inedible puckeryness), variable in acid. a small amount is a good supplement to a cider blend when you don't have access to bittersweet/bittersharp cider apples. you can also make a crabapple wine, check jack keller's site if interested:
http://winemaking.jackkeller.net/reques40.asp
 
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