WARWICK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — It’s apple picking season in the tri-state area, and a number of orchards are boasting tasty crops this year thanks to lots of sunshine.
CBS2’s Elise Finch was in Orange County on Wednesday, finding out which apples taste best right now, and which ones should be picked later in the season.
It’s been a good year so far at Masker Orchards in Warwick, and visitors have been picking out their favorites.
“Cortland and Granny Smith apples which they have a lot of here,” Carolina Lui said.
There are 14 major apple varieties grown on the 280 acre property, where customers drive themselves around and pick as many apples as they want.
George Vurno — the partner in charge of operations — said in spite of a challenging growing season, most of his apples grew nicely, thanks in large part to tons of sunshine.
“What the sunshine does is turn the starch into sugar. The dryness hurt us a little bit. The crop is a little bit behind, but it’s still coming along,” Vurno said.
There are some early season standouts.
“Right now the Cortlands, the Jonagolds, the Macintosh, and the Granny Smith type greens,” he said.
Other varieties have also been growing well, but not all apples ripen at the same time.
While people should always pick apples that look good to them, there are a few types you might want to leave out of your bag until later in the season.
“The red delicious come in, the Ida Reds you’ll see the Romes and the Sparta Macs,” Vurno said.
Vurno said the only way you’ll know you’re picking apples you’re really going to love is to taste them first.
“We brought our little knife with us so we could cut into slices and try the apple. And taste is definitely the way to do it,” Lui said.
Even an apple that isn’t ripe may taste great to you, which is why Vurno encourages his customers to taste everything as long as they aren’t wasteful.
Apple picking season started on Labor Day Weekend, and continues until all of the apples are gone which is usually in late October or early November.