Apples to apples

While checking on the apple trees along the garden, I couldn’t help but notice just how different they are.

They are all crab apples, but I know nothing about the varieties.  I don’t know where my parents got them from.

This first batch of pictures are from different trees, with my hand there to give perspective.  (click on them to see bigger images)

At least one tree was pruned back so severely, it is not producing any apples at all.  I am not sure if it will survive to next year.

There is another at the far then that has two large trunks that are mostly dead, surrounded by suckers have have been allowed to get quite large.  I am debating what to do with it.  I am thinking to just take out the dying trunks completely, while choosing one, maybe two, of the strongest suckers to leave behind, and cutting away the rest.

As for the pruning done last year, I believe what was cut away are dead and dying parts, because most of them still need to have their branches thinned out.  I will also look at thinning the apples on some of them, so the remaining ones will have more room to grow, and to take some weight off of the branches.

This next photo is from one of the ornamental apples by the old kitchen flower garden.

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From what my mother told me, these apples remain quite small and are not edible.

The next photo is from a very old crab apple tree, near the ornamental apples.

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This is the one that, as I was mowing the lawn as a teen, I would go under the branches, grab about 5 or 6 apples, and eat them while I continued mowing.  By the time I worked my way back to the tree, I was finished eating one batch and ready to grab some more!  They were to very tart, and I loved that.  The apples in the photo are about the size they were when I did that.  So not ripe at all! 😀

The next photos are from another tree near the ornamental apples.

It has two main trunks that are looking very dead.  One has a lone branch reaching to one side, with a few leaves at the end, and a single apple.

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It’s probably the largest apple of all the ones I looked at today!

From what I can see, there are no other apples from this trunk.

This next photo is from the other side of the tree.

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I would say that these are two, completely different trees!

And yet, they are together…

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This is the base of that apple tree.  I wonder if it was grafted at some point?  I can’t really tell.

I think the larger trunk on the right in the photo is actually completely dead.  The branches are so entwined, it’s hard to say for sure.

What I will likely do, probably in the fall, is simply cut out the two big trunks completely, and leave behind the strongest looking of the young growth.

One of the things my mother had but never used is a juicer.  I can see us making good use of that when it’s time to harvest the apples!

The Re-Farmer

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