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Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

Weekend Getaway: Apple Land

Posted September 29, 2006

Are you ready for Apple Betty? I am. Our Tar Heel Traveler Weekend Getaway is Henderson County where you'll find the greatest concentration of apple orchards in the state. Yes, it's apple picking time in the mountains. Melissa Buscher is taking her entire family to the Hendersonville area this fall to pluck those ovals packed with pectin power. The peak harvest in North Carolina is from mid August through October. There are five main orchard areas: Haywood County area, Henderson County, Mt. Mitchell area, Northwest area including Ashe and Alleghany counties and the South Mountain area which includes my old stomping grounds near Morganton. Of course, you don't have to go to the mountains to enjoy some great apples. Millstone Creek Orchards near Ramseur is also a great destination for apple lovers. What are the top apple varieties in North Carolina? Red Delicious. Golden Delicious. Rome Beauty. Stayman. Granny Smith. North Carolina ranks 7th in apple production nationwide with roughly 300 commercial orchards.

All right. What are your favorite apple recipes? Please share. My all-time favorite is the easy but delicious Apple Betty: Here is a link to an outstanding recipe:

http://pie.allrecipes.com/az/AppleBetty.asp

If you want to learn more about North Carolina apples and orchards check out these websites:

http://www.applejournal.com/nc02.htm

http://www.agr.state.nc.us/markets/commodit/horticul/apples/

Be careful. Don't fall off the ladder!
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