Thursday, July 15, 2010

Apple Picking in Canada

Written by Choleena DiTullio of Demand Studios for publication on The published article at

Canada is “ripe” with apple-picking opportunities! Depending on the variety of apple, weather and location, apples are ready between August and October. U-pick or Pick-Your-Own (PYO) apple orchards can be found in the provinces of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

Picking Tips
The color of the ripe fruit depends on the variety, so ask staff for picking tips on the varieties that they grow. It’s usually best to pick apples that are firm and free of bruising. If it's early in the season, pick from the outlying branches, since they ripen first. As the season progresses, pick from inner branches. Try not to sharply pull the apples from the tree, because this could cause other apples on the same branch to fall. Instead, lift the apple upward and give a sharp twist. Place them gently in your basket so that they don’t bruise. Although many U-picks supply ladders in the orchard, if you're taking children on your outing, consider selecting a U-pick that has dwarf trees with easily-reached branches. Bring sunscreen and hats if it’s sunny.

Storage Tips
These tips will help the apples keep fresh longer. Don’t wash the apples until you’re ready to use them. Keep them in a cool but not freezing location such as your basement or cellar. A slightly humid atmosphere will help keep them from shriveling or drying out. According to and, apples should not be stored directly beside potatoes. Potatoes release a gas that speeds up apple spoilage.

Apple Dishes
Apples are versatile in cooking. They are a main ingredient in many types of food across many cultures. Common apple foods and beverages: cider; juice; fritters; cake; vinegar; candied; dried; wine; schnapps; butter; pie; flan; jelly; sauce; cheesecake, crisp; strudel; dumpling; and crumble. Apple is a minor ingredient in many dishes such as creamy coleslaw, pancakes, muffins and stuffing. According to Scientific American, apples quickly oxidize (react to oxygen in the air) and turn brown when bruised or cut. Prepare apples last or toss them with a small amount of lemon or pineapple juice to counteract the oxidation process.

U-pick Farms
U-picks are not restricted to apples. Many farms have opened their fields to the public so that customers have access to many kinds of fruit and vegetables. If you’re specifically looking for apples, make sure that’s what the U-pick is offering. is run by a U-pick lover who has put together a fairly extensive listing of U-picks in Canada.

Other Activities at U-Picks
U-pick farms and orchards often offer related foods, services and activities to provide a complete package or day adventure to locals and tourists. Some features might be horse and wagon rides, mazes and themed meals. Pre-picked fruit and vegetables are often available, and a retail shop may offer foods made with produce from the farm. Some farms even maintain a winery and offer liquor sales and tastings. An example of an orchard that offers extensive products and experiences is Belliveau Orchard in Memramcook, New Brunswick, Canada.

References Apple Picking Tips Apple Picking in Canada Why do apple slices turn brown after being cut? U-pick farms in Canada Orchard Listing

Resources Apple Recipes
Belliveau Orchard: Welcome

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