Friday, September 22, 2006

Do Not Immerse in Water

There should really be an label like this on apples. About a week ago, I carefully picked the apples off of the crab apple tree in the back yard. They are great baking / saucing apples, and I was excited about making some pies and some more apple butter out of them. But we had a lot of rain. Like, 5 days of straight rain. The apples were, unfortunately left out in a large, 22 gal tub, where they were immersed in water. Today, I was cleaning up the deck and tidying up the apples and I discovered, to my dismay, that apples do not do well when left to soak in water for a week. In fact, due to osmosis, any apple that is not just perfectly firm absorbs water until there is an equal amount of water inside the apple as there is outside the apple. Since this is usually more than the skin can contain, the apples burst, then quickly go mush and rot. All of my biggest, most beautiful apples that I was excited about making a pie out of are now gone. I had to throw away at least a third of my apple crop. And the ones left on the tree have been eaten by all the migrating flocks of birds. Apparently birds feel no need to eat the whole apple. They simply gouge large trenches in them and then move on. Once more, my attempts at being an earth mother - type gardener person are thwarted by mother nature.

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