It’s an Apple Wonderland.
By Debra Knapke
Early morning apple picking is a tradition in our family. This morning it’s Winesap (more properly Staymen Winesap) harvest-time. I am convinced that the poisoned apple in Walt Disney’s Snow White was modeled after the beautiful red and shapely Winesap.
Winesaps, Cortlands and Macs (MacIntosh) are the apples of my youth. Memories surface while I am in the orchard: picking apples with the neighbors, and running up and down the rows – to the dismay of our moms, making pies and applesauce… this falls under the heading of the “good ‘ole days.’
As my husband, Tony, and I were driving out to Lynd’s to pick, I jokingly said, “I wonder what I will learn today about apples.”
As it turns out, a lot. First, there were some new cultivars to try. Below is ‘Crimson Crisp’, a beautiful apple that tastes similar to a Jonathan with underlying complex flavors. Interesting…
But the apple that blew my socks off was ‘Trail Delite’, a hybrid developed by Mitch Lynd and named last night. Imagine a blast of pear that settles into tart apple with hint of sweetness that lingers in your mouth. This is not a pretty apple; it is quite russeted. Important point: russet apples tend to be more resistant to pests and diseases and if I have to choose between pretty and natural disease
resistance, I will go with the latter every time.
We were lucky to find Mitch Lynd and I started asking questions about both hybrids and was treated to a wealth of apple history and lore. At the checkout, we were able to talk with Dick Lynd, and I asked more questions. Tony and I discussed what they told us all the way home.
One point that I kept hearing in my head: you have no idea what we have here in our orchards — amazing flavors and textures. I can’t wait…
Note from Debra: I did not correctly identify one of my apple muses: Dick WANDER (not Lynd) is in charge of apple production at Lynd Fruit Farm and to paraphrase Mitch Lynd, “he is among the most competent apple growers I have known.”