Friday, November 13, 2009

An Apple a Day

I like apples.
I enjoy good juice from well developed apples that are firm, not mushy and tart.
I was just treated to an Apple that I have never had before. It was a HoneyCrisp.
Couple of acquaintances somehow were able to pass the gauntlet of checkpoint Charlies and treated me to this jewel of nature.
If you have never had one, try and find one.
The HoneyCrisp is a special new variety that is grown in Minnesota. You know Minnesota, you know? That's the land of 10000 lakes and 10000000000 mosquitoes.
Crappy winters, summers that last 2 weeks, but they grow a fantastic apple.

Now in my constant quest to capitalize on trying to make my land profitable, or at least somewhat self sustaining, I wonder if the high elevation of Michoacan will support Apple orchards.
I know thye grow peaches around the area, and acres of avocados just 2000 ft lower in the warmer areas.....
What about apples?
Or perhaps coffee trees........

12 comments:

Bob Mrotek said...

Tancho,

Mexico is a big apple producer but most of the apples go to make apple juice. They grow a lot of apples in the mountains above Saltillo, Coahuila. The altitude is about the same as Mexico City. The only problem is hail storms. For that reason they grow the apples under a 30% black nylon mesh tent that lets in the sun but keeps out the hail stones. You should take a ride to a place near Saltillo called "Los Lirios". It is really quite something to see. The word "Lirio" means the flower iris and is also used for "lilly" as in "Lilly of the Valley".

Tancho said...

I know all about hail, it killed half our manzana pepper crop this last year. I think I am going to do some more research on this, I knew that you would have some great info on this. Now I need to find a source for shadecloth......
And we shall plan a trip Los Lirios!
Thanks, as usual!
You are my Renaissance man.

Babs said...

They also grow apples on the way to Chihuahua, south of there along with walnuts and pecans. I'm not sure where I was (why does that NOT surprise me) but I was astonished at the number of orchards.......

Coffee trees are much more tropical. Think Sierra Gorda, Chiapas, Guatemala.........

Tancho said...

My problem is figuring out a way to use the land at least to cover some of the expenses. There is not a similar climate in the US with the elevation, so this is all a new learning experience. I hate to do a trial and error project, but there has to be something besides designer lettuce, which is not great for the Mexican market, since salads are not keen on their dinner list.A friend of mine use to grow Belgian endive, that grows inside a warehouse......
I will keep looking....

Felipe said...

My neighbor has an apple tree, and it has apples.

Tancho said...

Felipe, are the apples normal sized or puny little things?
I guess I can try a few varieties, so many things to do, so little time........

Calypso said...

All my coffee growing friends seem to feel it is an act of love (well like anyway) little reward beyond that. I would think you are a tad too high however for the red beans.

I have a neighbor that has some hobby plants where we are at a mile high - but it never freezes even there.

Don Cuevas said...

Our friends, Alfredo and Lupe, of the Hotel Mesón de San Antonio in Pátzcuaro have a few trees in the patio and the back garden.
They once gave us a bag of unusual (to us) elongated apples that were wondrously crisp, juicy and tasty. But some years the trees do not do well.

Saludos,
Don Cuevas

Felipe said...

The neighbors´ apples are kinda smallish.

Christine said...

Have you read "My Mexican Kitchen" today? Apparently black radishes fetch a fair price at your mercado and you wouldn't have to worry about hail!

norm said...

Something you might want to try are raspberries. They take three years to make a money crop. I grow a type called EVERMORE that puts out two crops a year, a short heavy crop in early summer and then a long heavy crop a month latter that runs three months heavy and two months that are hardly worth picking but tasty for home use. I grow grapes, apples, pears, they all have different growing styles. I have grown berries between grape rows to keep the weeds down, one pass down each side of the berries with the tiller, a little hand weeding and the plants are happy. Grapes take time to produce, about five years-ten and they are prime. Apples and pears take about ten years to put out a heavy crop. I would think that long term, grapes would be the best crop for where you live, they take a long time to produce but once they do produce, you get more every year. The raspberries would pay faster and provide a steady cash flow but the grapes will pay better in the long run, less work to pick and they give you more weight. Most fruit sells by weight.

Tancho said...

Thanks all for the advise, I don't think I have the staying power to try apples, so maybe it's raspberries. Only problem is I like them, so I would be digging in to the profits...not that there is anything wrong with that!