The Apple Tree is a deciduous tree in the rose family best known for its sweet, pomaceous fruit. It is cultivated worldwide as a fruit tree. In the wild, Apples grow readily from seeds. However, like most perennial fruits, Apples are ordinarily propagated asexually by grafting.
Apple Blossom is produced in spring simultaneously with the budding of the leaves and are produced on spurs and some long shoots. The fruit matures in late summer or autumn and varieties exist with a wide range of sizes.
Apple Trees and fruit are prone to a number of fungal, bacterial and pest problems, which can be controlled by a number of organic and non-organic means. About 80 million tons of Apples were grown worldwide in 2013 and China produced almost half of this total. There are more than 7,500 known cultivars of Apples, resulting in a range of desired characteristics for various tastes and uses, including cooking, eating and cider production.
Apples have been grown for thousands of years in Asia and Europe, and have religious and mythological significance in many cultures, including Norse, Greek and European Christian traditions.
Apples are often eaten raw, but can also be found in many prepared foods (especially desserts) and drinks. Modern Apples are generally sweeter than older cultivars, as popular tastes have varied over time. Many beneficial health effects are thought to result from eating Apples; however, two types of allergies are attributed to various proteins found in Apples.
Winter Apples, picked in late autumn and stored just above freezing, have been an important food in Asia and Europe. Until the 20th century, farmers stored Apples in frost-proof cellars during the winter for their own use or for sale. Improved transportation of fresh Apples by train and road replaced the necessity for storage, but in the 21st century, long-term storage again came into popularity, as “controlled atmosphere” facilities were used to keep apples fresh year-round using high humidity, low oxygen and controlled carbon dioxide levels to maintain fruit freshness.
The skin of the Apple is unusually rich in nutrients and even if the recipe you’ve chosen requires peeled Apples, consider leaving the skins on to receive the unique benefits found in the skins. To prevent browning when slicing Apples, simply put the slices in a bowl of cold water with a spoonful of lemon juice. For use in future recipes, sliced Apples freeze well in plastic bags or containers.
There’s an important loss of nutrients when Apples are processed into Apple Sauce and an even greater loss when they are processed into juice. It is possible to put whole Apples into a powerful blender for juice when very little if any of the nutrients are lost. Researchers have compared intake of whole Apples to intake of Apple Sauce and Apple Juice, to discover that people report less hunger after eating whole Apples rather than eating Apple Sauce or drinking Apple Juice. The polyphenols in Apples are clearly capable of influencing our digestion and absorption of carbohydrates and the overall impact of these changes is to improve regulation of our blood sugar.
The Apple was considered, in ancient Greece, to be sacred to Aphrodite and to catch a thrown Apple was to symbolically show one’s acceptance of love. Though the ‘forbidden fruit’ of Eden in the Book of Genesis is not identified, popular Christian tradition has held that it was an Apple that Eve coaxed Adam to share with her and the apple became a symbol for knowledge, immortality, temptation and the fall of man into sin and sin itself. The larynx has been called Adam’s Apple because of a notion that it was caused by the forbidden fruit remaining in the throat of Adam.