Family Apple Picking

Don’t be a Bad Apple! The Art of Apple Picking

Fall is a beautiful time of year, and what could be better than taking in the crisp weather and picking even crisper, fresh apples? That’s right, the height of apple season is here, and there is no shortage of apples to pick in YDH. Apple picking is a fun fall activity that makes for a great family outing. Bring a sweater and wear some comfortable boots that you don’t mind getting a little dirty. There will be an abundance of scenic photo opportunities, so don’t forget your camera!

Get lost in a corn maze (hopefully not!) and explore our beautiful region with a warm cup of fresh apple cider in hand. You won’t regret it!

Father with Son On Shoulders in Corn Maze

Apples are the nutritious go-to snack, whether for lunches or when you’re on-the-go….but let’s be honest, apples taste even better when turned into a warm homemade apple pie, apple crisp, or apple cider – yum!

Pro tip: Granny Smith is one of the most popular baking apples. It’s a tart and tangy apple with a firm flesh. If you like a splash of sweetness, pair it with some slices of Honeycrisp in your recipe.

Baking Pie
Apples in Basket
Kids Apple Picking

York Durham Headwaters, with its lush apple orchards, offers a delightful experience for apple enthusiasts and nature lovers alike. The act of picking apples from these bountiful trees can be both fun and rewarding. However, there is an art to apple picking, and it’s important to do it the right way to ensure you enjoy the best of what these orchards have to offer while also preserving the health of the trees.

Let’s explore these easy tips for picking the perfect apple in the perfect way..

  1. Inspect the Apple: Before you even reach for an apple, take a moment to inspect it visually. Look for apples that are vibrant in color, free of blemishes or bruises, and feel firm to the touch. Remember by using your keen sense of sight to identify the best apples for picking, it will ensure you select the ripest and sweetest fruit.
  2. Position Your Hand: Gently cup the apple in your hand, with your fingers and thumb positioned near the stem.
  3. Twist and Lift: To remove the apple from the tree, twist it upwards and away from the branch. Apply a gentle, twisting motion while simultaneously lifting the apple. This technique allows the apple to detach from the stem naturally without causing damage to the tree or the fruit.
  4. Avoid Yanking: It’s important not to yank or pull the apple forcefully, as this can harm the tree and lead to the premature harvesting of unripe fruit.
  5. Maintain Tree Health: Apple trees require care and attention to continue producing healthy fruit. While picking apples, be mindful of the tree’s branches and limbs. Avoid bending or breaking them by not putting too much weight or pressure on them. Treat the orchard with respect to ensure that it remains a bountiful source of apples for years to come.
  6. No Biting, No Wasting: One common mistake some people make is taking a bite out of an apple and then discarding it on the ground. Not only is this wasteful, but it can also attract pests to the orchard.
  7. Stay on the Ground: No Tree Climbing: Resist the urge to climb the apple trees. Climbing not only risks your safety but can also harm the tree and disrupt its branches. Most orchards provide ladders or picking poles designed for safe and efficient apple picking. Use these tools to reach the higher branches, and always follow the rules and guidelines set by the orchard staff.

Picking apples in an orchard is a delightful experience that allows you to connect with nature and enjoy the fruits of the season. By following these tips above you can make the most of your apple-picking adventure while ensuring the orchard’s health and productivity for generations to come. So, next time you visit an Ontario orchard, remember these tips and savour the joy of harvesting apples the right way.

Apple Picking

More Farm Etiquette Tips

YDH Apple Picking Farms




Download our map to find an apple orchard near you!

Apple and Pumpkin Map

Learn more about the apple varieties grown in our region:

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