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Sunday, May 8, 2011

Yesterday, We Bought Fruit Trees

Last year, when we bought our house in Hadley, two things I knew we had to do were buy a piano (check) and plant some fruit trees (almost check).  Both of these two things are reminiscent of home, family, and community -- there was always a piano in my home when I was growing up, and my parents always planted fruit trees, even when they knew they might only be in a house for a couple of years.  Occasional evenings spent singing around the piano; autumn afternoons spent picking and eating fresh apples from the trees (our trees and orchard trees) -- a good way to grow up.

So yesterday marked a happy day -- with a "welcome to the neighborhood" coupon in hand, we headed over to Hadley Garden Center to pick out fruit trees.  Apples, peaches, cherries, and plums abounded, with pears and other varieties in the mix (including some amazing multi-apple grafted trees).  With a little help from the kind folks at the garden center, we picked out two apple trees and a peach, and two bags of planting mixture, all of which they managed to get into my little Honda civic to help us save on the delivery fee ($20).  Great customer service.

What kinds of trees did we buy?  One red fuji apple, one suncrisp apple, and one cresthaven peach.  We weren't entirely decided on which varieties of apple we wanted when we visited (though honeycrisp was high on our list), and actually made a rather spur-of-the-moment decision.  Upon post-purchase research, however, I am quite delighted and excited with the choices made.  (There were many other interesting apples available, which we may consider in the future: cinnamon spice, wolf river, pound sweet, winesap, arkansas black, wealthy, smokehouse....  Also, as I wrote, cherries!)
The peach tree was something of a bonus, simply because we had a few extra dollars on the coupon and couldn't make up our minds about another apple tree.  It's possible that we will have a peach or two this summer; almost definitely next (there are already tiny little peaches on the tree).  And the apples -- well, we're looking forward to those appearing within the next 2-3 years.  I can hardly wait.
Blossoms on the suncrisp.
A slice of apple trivia -- the Suncrisp, which I had never heard of, is a cross of Golden Delicious and Cox Orange Pippen and was bred at Rutgers.  It does not show up in supermarkets because it is not considered a "pretty" apple; instead, it is usually sent to food manufacturers.  Nevertheless, I hear the taste is quite nice and it has a long storage life. Looking forward to it!

I could buy and plant apple trees and other fruit trees until there is no room left in the lawn -- I love them!  What experience and memories do you have with planting, growing, tending to, and picking apples & peaches?

1 comment:

kris said...

I just about have planted fruit trees/bushes until there is no room left in the yard. Your father fears I will actually succeed. But wouldn't that be so fun!