Fruit trees and waste this summer

  carver 11:38 28 Oct 2018

This year has been really funny as far as the weather goes but as far as the fruit trees I have it's been the best for years. I have had more fruit and bigger fruit both on the apple trees and the pear trees that at any time I can remember, had so much fruit been trying to give it away. One thing I have noticed is fruit in supermarkets is still at a high price and one reason for this is some farmers are just ploughing the fruit back into the ground to keep prices high, what a waste.

  oresome 14:19 28 Oct 2018

I have purchased 5 or 6 large Gala apples at the supermarket for less than a pound several times in the last few weeks. (Sainsburys, Tesco and Lidl)

  Forum Editor 14:57 28 Oct 2018

"I have noticed is fruit in supermarkets is still at a high price and one reason for this is some farmers are just ploughing the fruit back into the ground to keep prices high, what a waste."

Can you link to evidence of this?

Growers have certainly been asking the supermarkets to change their apple specifications so they will accept smaller fruit this year. The long hot spell in Summer was good for apple taste, but not for size - most commercially grown apples are smaller this season.

Taking one variety at random (Gala), the current wholesale price is around 72P per kilo, and for the same week in the 2016/2017 season it was 73p.

The apple market is a global one, with the biggest producer on the planet (by far) being China. America comes next, with the EU third. The largest producer in the EU is Poland. Broadly speaking, the market prices throughout Europe tend to level out during the summer, but the supermarket prices for locally grown apples in each country can fluctuate with demand.

I haven't heard any reports of growers ploughing apples into the ground to keep prices high, but perhaps I've missed them.

  Aitchbee 15:33 28 Oct 2018

off subject slightly, but I had a satisfactory harvest of fruits from two [out of 3] of my little apple trees on my verandah ... most of the apples got blown off with the strong winds about a month ago. The tree which bore no fruit was sheltered from the rain so I will have to move that big pot into the open just like the other two next spring when they all start to bud & flower again, hopefully.

  Quickbeam 16:48 28 Oct 2018

I have a small apple tree that's about 5 years old and usually gives me about two dozen sweet but slightly sharp average sized apples.

With this years drought it dumped half it's fruits bu July despite me pouring a bucket of water on the roots 2 or 3 times a week. The apples that ripened were 50% bigger than the usual size, but very bland in flavour without the slight sharpness that I like.

  Belatucadrus 17:44 28 Oct 2018

We have quite a few apple trees in the garden and this year we'll be hard pressed to get half a dozen apples from the whole lot of them.

  Aitchbee 21:44 28 Oct 2018

btw, I still can't adam'n'eve how a tiny seed can grow into a beautiful tree with hundreds of apples on it, year in year out, it's mindblowing, and long may it continue :o)

  Quickbeam 05:29 29 Oct 2018

Apparently a tree grown from a pip will become a slight variation of the parent variety. To maintain the pedigree of the original variety, they are grown from cuttings.

Is there any truth in this?

  Quickbeam 05:49 29 Oct 2018

So there is... click here.

The pip grown tree will be nothing like the hybrid parent as it appears that the prominent genes can comes from any part of the pip trees history.

That'll explain why so many layby apple trees grown from a discarded apple core during a '50s roadside picnic are inedible!

  BT 09:08 29 Oct 2018

Despite what most on here are saying my apple tree has been the best its been since I moved here 13 years ago. I've done absolutely nothing to facilitate this. I picked 2 carrier bags full of good apples all of a good size and good flavour. There was probably another bagfull on the ground which I leave for the wildlife - hedgehogs, birds and foxes mainly. Gave some away, ate some and made the rest into chutney. Even caught my gardening bloke sneaking one.

  Forum Editor 11:30 29 Oct 2018


Lots of people have had similar experiences with this year's crop, but UK commercial growers have generally reported that apples are smaller, due to the long hot spell in the summer. Flavour is better, because the hot weather helped to produce higher levels of sugar in the fruits.

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