Apple Production in Texas
A lot of people know that they can grow fruits like peaches and things like that, but a lot of us overlook the fact that you can grow pretty good apples in this area. This is one called Anna. There are a couple others called Dorsett Golden and Ein Scheimer that do extremely well here.
Now they may not be as pretty, but they sure taste good. One thing I want you to realize is that you are not going to grow them as easy as they are in other places in the world and in this country because we have fungus diseases such as this, called bitter rot, that shows up in bad years. We have dying back, which we experience on pears up there, that limbs actually die back, and that's called fireblight. It needs to be controlled in the early spring.
And one other thing we have is that these apples are so good we have a lot of predators that come around, or varmints, and they love to eat them just as good as you do and maybe eat them better than you do. Raccoons, such as you see here, can really devastate a crop and will eat them even green before you can get them ripe. They are cute little things, but they can get them. Squirrels also eat their fair share of these little delicious fruits that they've never seen in Texas.
Now, of course, there are several ways to do it. You could put a netting around them or you can just work out other ways of trying to get these pests under control; trap them and take them and release them into the wild. But don't overlook apples. It is a good fruit for this area if you choose the right variety.
This has been Jerry Parsons, Vegetable Specialist for the Texas Agricultural Extension Service.
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