Tag Archives: apple picking

So Many Apples!!!

While hiding out from Irma, Andy and I had the opportunity to get a jump on fall activities and go apple picking with my mom. While there are literally dozens of orchards within a hour’s drive of her house, we ended up at Mercier Orchard, a wonderful place that we have been visiting for years now. Usually, we are just there for lunch and to load up on baked goods since we’ve never been in town during apple picking season.

Now there wasn’t hay involved, but we did load into a wagon pulled by a tractor to get out into the permium apple picking are of the orchard. The guide hanging onto the back of the wagon told us that they grow 53 different varieties of apples on the property, along with other fruits throughout the year.

I have a sneaking suspicion that our trip was as much for my mom as it was for us. I’d jokingly mentioned apple picking in passing and she latched on to the idea and made. it. happen.

We picked either 6 or 8 of the varieties currently available, and I wish I could tell you their names, but they all sort of looked the same in the bag. The only ones I remember for sure are Red Delicious, Candy Crisp & Macintosh. Andy heard the name Candy Crisp, and he was back and forth checking every single row until he tracked those babies down.

I was also surprised how athletically my mom hiked around. Not that she doesn’t walk every morning, but damn, you should have seen that woman practically sprinting when she spotted some especially vibrant purple-y red apples.

We ended up with almost an entire bushel of apples. I thought my mom/extended family would want some, but they decided we should take them all back to Florida. It filled the entire bottom drawer of the fridge.

I’ve managed to use about a 1/4, but I am thinking I am going to have to up my baking game to get through everything while it’s still at peak freshness. Andy has valiantly offered to eat as many cinnamon apples as I care to make. He’s a giver like that.


Apple Picking

While we were in Georgia, I used my wifely persuasion powers(and my super pathetic pout) and convinced Andy to take me apple picking. I’ve lived in Florida my entire life so apple picking hasn’t ever been something I’d have easy access to, but I was bound and determined to make it happen this year.

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After a little research online, Andy and I decided on BJ Reece Orchards since they opened early and were only an hour away from where we were staying.

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We got a little turned around trying to figure out where we needed to go since the orchard is actually on both sides of the road plus they have a store where they sell all of their beautiful produce. The good news was the entrance to the orchard was right near the petting zoo; the bad news was we couldn’t go in because it wasn’t a Saturday or Sunday. I still said good morning to all of the animals and told them how very adorable they were.

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You might not know this, but going apple picking after it’s rained for four days straight isn’t the best idea. Being from Florida, and a little naïve, I only had two types of shoes with me on this trip. Flip flops and heels, neither are good for stomping around in the mud. I stuck with the flip flops, but Andy had to catch me at least half a dozen times before we made it far enough into the orchard for the grass to be thick enough to counter act the slippery mud. It’s pretty funny now, but at the time I was seriously reconsidering the outing.

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Once I got my feet firmly planted, I got down to serious apple picking business. The weather was great, we were the only people in the orchard, and once we found the area we wanted (Granny Smith, please!), we quickly filled our bags.

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I even got to save Andy from falling. I was really paying attention to where I was walking after the slippery mud, but my sneaker clad husband wasn’t nearly as cautious and he slid on a rotten apple. Clearly, we are meant to be together.

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Before getting back on the road, we took a quick look around the orchard’s store. We bought some apple butter and some pastries for the road. They had the best apple hand pies that I’ve ever had. Seriously amazing.
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And of course, I had to take pictures of the farm cats. Poor little ones were a dirty from playing in the mud, but they were having a blast rolling around in it.