Looking For Apples. Finding Pumpkins.

I wanted some local apples.  Considering that this is the part of the country where Johnny Appleseed did his thing you’d think that finding some local apples would be EZPZ.  But you’d be wrong.

There really aren’t very many local orchards any more, so it takes some driving way out into the countryside to find one.  Which is exactly what we did on Sunday.

However, once we got to the apple orchard we discovered that pumpkins were the raison d’être for this orchard’s existence.

It was the pumpkins’ orange-y cuteness that drew the customers into the barn market & adjoining fields.

First, a first sign told us what to do.

Nearby piles of [pre-picked] pumpkins showed us what we could expect to find if we chose to pick pumpkins.

Then, a second sign, explained to us what not to do.  I’m sure that Ralph Waldo Emerson upon seeing such a sign would scoff.  As you may remember, Mr. Emerson said: “I would rather sit on a pumpkin, and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion.”  But apparently the management at this particular apple orchard had other ideas.  [Please note: no velvet cushions were provided in lieu of pumpkins.]

Entertaining as it might have been, we decided not to pick pumpkins.  Instead, we went into the barn market and bought a bag of apples, a jar of zucchini relish & a jar of quince jelly.  Then we returned home to enjoy our local apples purchased from one of the last apple orchards in the area.  Yum.

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Ally Bean

Observant wordsmith. Humorous. Fond of foibles. Curious. Delighted by design. Adaptable. Midwestern by chance.

18 thoughts on “Looking For Apples. Finding Pumpkins.”

  1. Yum! I love quince jam but can’t find it around here. Courgette relish sounds like something I’d enjoy, too. Like the quote about sitting on the pumpkins, I’d not come across that before.

    1. Polly, anything quince is rare around here, too. That’s why I grabbed the jar off the shelf without a second thought. The quote is one that I was encouraged [forced?] to learn when I was in school. It has stuck with me.

      1. I can see how that would stick with you! The one that sticks with me is from Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night and it was a competition to memorise it before anyone else. It helped that I fancied the teacher! (I was about 14, you know how it is).

  2. My favorite was the car dodging to fetch said apples, and then return safely to our vehicle. Traffic was a tad slower (and less frequent) when they built the barn, I reckon. Your pictures captured all the pumpkin glory, Madame Bean. Well done.

    1. Zen-Den, parking in the field was fun, but you’re right that it was a challenge to get to the actual farm market– over yonder across the road.

  3. We love picking apples, but we have to drive 3 hours to the NC mountains. We always make a day of it and bring home lots of apples to share. We traveled to Flat Rock, NC 3 weeks ago for Johnagolds and Galas. They were already out of Honey Crisp, my favorite. We also bought cider donuts and caramel apples-Yum!!

    1. Beth, your adventure to NC sounds productive + yummy. I love Honey Crisps, too. These Melrose are more tart, but oh so fresh… which I like a lot.

  4. I love anything harvested in the fall. The fall produce seems to defy the season by saying. “We will be fruitful when other, lesser produce have given up the ghost!”

  5. Missouri Jonathons used to be my favorite apple – but it’s been years since we’ve found local orchards stocked full of huge, juicy jonathons. Still, your post brings back good memories! Like the quince bush that grew on the side of the house when I was growing up. It was a favorite pastime of mine to con my little friends into taking a bite.

  6. Good time of year for farmer’s markets…pumpkins didn’t do well here – the farms are trucking them in for kids to “pick” in the fields
    (Oh, never seen apples on trees…curious do apple orchards have that great apple smell? sorry if this seems silly….)

    1. philosophermouse, not a silly question. Yes, orchards smell like apples. Although if the apples aren’t picked on a timely basis the orchards tend to smell more like hard cider– which can be intense & less pleasant.

    1. Margaret, we don’t have Pink Ladies around here. [You may take that comment any way that you’d like.] We’re mostly about Melrose & Jonathans & Honey Crisps. But even those are getting more difficult to find any more.

  7. I haven’t been to an apple orchard in years. I should go one of these days, but sounds like I’ll have to wait until next fall…

    1. Melisa, it was fun to go there, but all the pumpkins were a surprise to us. Maybe that’s how apple orchards now make their money in October? I dunno. All I know is that the apples we bought were tasty… even if they seemed to be playing second fiddle to pumpkins.

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