Fall in Vermont means a lot of things to different people. Some think of the beautiful Vermont foliage in the mountains, while others think of the fast-approaching winter (and the ski season that comes with it). For many, fall is harvest time, and there's no better way to experience it than with flavorful heirloom apples.
For the uninitiated, an heirloom apple is a variety of apple that is less commonly grown and that has its roots in historic varieties that have been grown for more than 75 years. In fact, many varieties have existed for centuries. Heirloom apples may look different from the Red Delicious and Gala apples we know and love - they may have spots or striped colors, odd shapes, and be exceptionally large or small. But nearly all of them are worth trying, especially if you've only ever had apples from the supermarket.
If you're interested in trying some heirloom apples while enjoying the fall in Vermont, you're in luck. Some of the nation's best heirloom apple orchards are in Vermont and New Hampshire, and they're keeping different varieties of apples alive that have been enjoyed for hundreds of years. These apples are quite literally right out of the pages of history, and are taken from trees all over the world.
For instance, take a look at the different varieties grown at Scott Farm Orchard, a historic apple orchard that has been growing fruit since 1791. The orchard currently grows more than 90 varieties of heirloom apple on its 571 acres, including such rare and unusual varieties as the Black Oxford, the Roxbury Russet, and the Yellow Transparent.
Once you've sampled the heirloom varieties, you can also pick your own apples at Scott Farm on their Pick Your Own orchard. You can even Pick for Your Neighbor, where the apples you pick will be set aside for use by the local food bank.
Another great local heirloom apple orchard is Alyson's Orchard, a 450-acre orchard that grows apples, peaches, plums, nectarines, berries, and more. You can pick your own heirloom apples here, and also visit their fantastic Farm Stand, where they sell locally-produced products such as jam, maple syrup, and wines grown from local vineyards.
There are lots of other places to go apple-picking in southern Vermont, too. If you want to know where you can pick regular varieties of apples like McIntosh and Paula Reds, take a look at this blog post we put together on apple picking.
And of course, after a full day of picking and carrying apples, you'll probably be in for some much-needed rest. Why not take it at one of our unforgettable southern Vermont rental properties? You're sure to enjoy the extra amenities and all the space - perfect for holding bushels of fruit or baking up a fresh apple pie. We know you'll find one you'll love.