I’ve been driving south on Watson Road towards Puslinch at least once per week. It’s a ride that leads me rolling through drumlins and acres of farmland until I reach my destination, Drumlin Farm. I’m so inspired by the natural beauty that surrounds me – the colours, the light, and on this early October morning, the light foggy mist in the air. It’s hard to resist pulling over and snapping some shots of the tress and their leaves as they start a magical transformation through hues of yellow orange and firey red. One of my favourite tree at this time of year is the sumac. Driving down the dirt road to Drumlin Farm, I’m greeted by the farm hens who have their own special place under the sumac trees.
Today I'm helping Gerry and his staff forage wild apples growing in the back of his property. We packed our bushel baskets in the wagon and took a ride over the drumlins to arrive at our apple tree.
Unfortunately, I cannot confirm the exact variety of apple we harvested. Gerry tells me the apple tree was most likely planted many years ago and due to years of wild growth and lack of harvesting, the tree is now a part of the natural landscape.
Interestingly, quite a few branches on the tree were heavy with green skinned apples and do we think the tree may have been grafted rather than grown from seed. Also to our surprise, an old grape vine was intertwined with the long branches of the apple tree. The flesh of the grapes were quite tart and the skins were pleasantly sweet. We harvested some of the grape vine for wreath making workshops that are held at the farm.
By lunch we finished with 6 ½ bushels of apples and quite a few left on the tree to harvest at a later date. When the farm harvests a total of 20 bushels, the apples are brought to Filsinger's to be pressed into cider. I have my own idea of how to use our harvest….an apple chutney to pair with Berkshire BBQ pork and grilled cheese sandwich. Stay tuned!