Archive for September, 2012

Homemade Apple Juice

What to do with all those apples from your backyard trees? Last month, my mom and I picked hundreds of apples from two 35 year old apple trees in my parents’ backyard. After making a few apple pies, I still had dozens of apples sitting in our refrigerator. Many of them were getting soft and had brown spots on them.

Today, I decided to juice the remaining apples (about 60 of them). We have a juicer device that we rarely use. I cored and sliced the apples, cutting out the brown spots, but not removing the skin. Then, I fed the apple slices through the juicer. Juice comes out one side and the skins come out the other. I made over a gallon of juice. I then heated the apple juice in a pot, and added some sugar and cinnamon, although the juice tasted very good by itself. It turned out very pulpy, which I don’t mind. Homemade juice can be diluted with water and/or strained through a sieve to make it more liquidy.

Below is a picture of the 5-year old Fuji apple tree in our backyard. It has about 100 apples this year, although they’re small. I’ve only picked a few of them so far. Last year, it had less apples (about 30), but they were larger. I’ve managed to keep the tree itself very small through pruning and not watering it too much to limit its growth. It’s a semi-dwarf tree that has the potential to grow over 20 feet tall. It’s currently only about 6′ tall x 6′ wide, so it’s still very easy to net and harvest the fruit. Apples of course are well known for growing into very large trees. However, so far I’ve found that at least some varieties of apples are easy to keep small. They still produce a significant amount of fruit despite their small size.

We also have a very small Granny Smith apple tree, which was full of apples a month ago. But I ended up pulling off about 70% of the apples because the branches were sagging to near breakage under the weight of the fruit.

September 15 2012 | Apples | 3 Comments »