There are a few ways I know fall has arrived. The hostas in the perennial beds are turning yellow. The nights are cool enough that with our windows open, a fluffy warm duvet makes the bed feel like heaven. My little tutoring business has started up again. And the apple harvest has begun in earnest.
Last year, with very different weather, the Pink Ladies were ready in mid-August, giving us time to pick bushels and bushels for drying and applesauce making, before the Cox Orange Pippins ripened in late September. This year, probably because of the crappy summer and the early autumn, it's all happening at once. It's probably fortunate for us that the trees are not as loaded with apples as they were last year, but we're still having trouble keeping up. The dehydrator is being kept busy, and since there's no room in the freezer for apple pies and crumbles (what with all those chicken breasts...) we'll have to get cracking on the applesauce and apple butter.
But before they all get peeled and sliced and cooked and processed, just look at that gorgeous Pink Lady atop a pile of Cox Orange Pippins. What with bugs and scabs and all the other things that mark up the fruit, most of our apples are a bit homely looking. But that Pink Lady - that's one perfect apple.