Saturday, August 12, 2017

Michigan Apples

Depending on which survey you happen to believe Michigan is consistently the state with the second or third largest crop of apples each year. The crop is coming soon. I like apples but even more than apples I like what apples portend: cooler weather, women in sweaters, football and fall. Those all kind of go together in my head. Apples also mean that there will be lots of apple pies, apple fritters, apple sauces and all sorts of other treats derived from that fruit. There are thousands of different kinds of apples. They don't all exist in Michigan but there are enough different Michigan varieties to keep a fan of this fruit well satisfied for the next three months as fall arrives, with its lower temperatures and overcast skies. Apple lovers won't have to wait much longer to sink their teeth into their favorite fruit: This year's Michigan apple harvest is ahead of schedule, with certain varieties' predicted peak harvest dates falling anywhere from a few days to an entire week ahead of normal. 

According to Michigan State University Extension, data collected from around the state suggests the apple harvest will be significantly early for certain varieties in some parts of Michigan, but that the cropload will be 65 percent of normal due to frost damage earlier in the year.  "As always, the weather seems to be unusual each year and 2017 was no different," MSU Extension posted in an article predicting apple harvest dates late last month. 

MacIntosh apples, for example, are 10 to 11 days ahead of normal in some parts of the state, and, in general, a few days ahead of the 2016 harvest. Meanwhile, peak harvest for Red Delicious apples is predicted to range from one to eight days ahead of normal, depending on what region they are in.

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