Apples are a source of vitamins and minerals useful for the body. Proper collection and storage will allow you to have fragrant fruits on the table throughout the winter.
In order not to lose the harvest, it is necessary to know all the features of organizing the process of preserving fruits, including the choice of location, container, and preparatory measures.
Read about how to keep apples at home for the winter correctly, what you can and cannot do, how to protect the crop from mice and other rodents, read the article.
- Conditions for storage at home in winter
- Where is better?
- Methods and technologies for protection from mice and other rodents
- How to store apple juice?
- How to store dried fruit properly?
- We save the seedlings
- Problems and ways to solve them
- What can and can not be together with?
- Secrets of experienced gardeners
Conditions for storage at home in winter
For long-term storage of apples, only suitable conditions are needed. Temperature is especially important. It should be in the range from 0 ° C to + 4 ° C. For autumn varieties - about 0 ° C. Such conditions are present in cellars and basements.
A similar temperature regime can also be obtained:
- on the balcony;
- in fridge;
- in a basement or cellar;
- in a trench dug in the ground.
Violation of the temperature minimum and maximum will lead to a reduction in shelf life:
- At a lower temperature, the fruits will begin to freeze and rot.
- At temperatures above + 5 ° C, apples will begin to dry out and wither.
In addition to temperature, additional conditions must be met for successful winter storage:
- protection from sunlight;
- humidity - 80% and higher;
- protection against flooding by groundwater;
- frost protection.
Those that do not have a whole stalk are not suitable for storage during the winter, as they become open to fungal diseases.
During storage do not frequently change the location of the fruit... This is due to the fact that conditions of detention will change, albeit slightly. As a result, the number of spoiled fruits will increase.
At what temperature should apples be stored at home in winter, read here.
In order for the crop to be well stored all winter and even spring, you should:
- Harvest correctly.
- Sort it.
- Choose a storage location.
Before sending apples for storage, they should be sorted out, sorting according to the following criteria:
- damaged and intact;
- mature and immature;
- big and small.
The duration of harvest storage directly depends on the apple variety. Early and autumn fruits are not suitable for winter storage. Only winter varieties need to be harvested.
Popular winter varietiesthat have a long shelf life include:
- Golden and others.
Winter varieties should only be harvested when they are fully ripe. Harvesting too late or too early affects not only the appearance of the fruit, but also its taste.
In the middle lane, the first apple harvest is harvested in mid-August. But early varieties do not have a good shelf life.
Autumn varieties begin to be harvested at the border of August-September, they lie longer, but not throughout the winter. They gradually acquire softness and lose their taste. Winter varieties are intended for long-term storage, it is desirable to collect them from the end of September to mid-October.
You should not stand the fruit on the tree until the very frost, since frozen apples will not be stored all winter.
He will tell you when to remove apples for storage this article.
Harvested apples should not be rubbed, so as not to remove the natural bloom on the fruit. If it is violated, the shelf life may be reduced.
Carry out additional processing:
- a weak solution of potassium permanganate,
- in other ways.
How to process apples before storing them, you can find out here.
Choice of containers
Most often, wooden boxes or cardboard boxes are selected for storing apples. These methods are convenient, allowing you to compactly place the crop in the storage area. You should try to avoid touching the fruit with each other.
For these purposes, one of the techniques is used:
- Wrapping each apple separately in paper.
- Sprinkling with additional materials (shavings, sawdust, peat or sand).
- Gap unfolding.
Cardboard boxes, if they are chosen as containers, should be pre-glued at the joints with tape or reinforced in another way so that they do not break through under the weight of apples.
Where is better?
The use of boxes and boxes for storage is not always possible. In some cases, another organization is required.
A cool basement or cellar is the best storage space... But their absence does not exclude the possibility of preserving the harvest, since it is possible to organize it even in a city apartment.
In the refrigerator, you can store not only winter, but also early apple varieties with a short shelf life.
For better preservation, all fruits should be placed in cellophane bags (no more than 2 kg each). Each of these bags should be provided with several small holes for ventilation.
He will tell you about whether and how to store apples in the refrigerator this article.
In the cellar
In cellars and cellars, which have a suitable humidity and temperature for keeping fruit, boxes with fruit are installed only after the rooms have been disinfected.
To prevent the contents of the container from being crushed, the boxes should not be filled to the very top., and even more so "with a slide." It is convenient to install them on top of each other.
Designed for many months of storage, fruits should be compactly stacked in boxes. Drawers can be installed not only on top of each other, but also on existing shelves. Details of storing apples in the cellar - here.
In the ground
Storing fruit crops directly in the ground is an option for those who do not have a cellar and basement on the site... In the allotted area, a trench is dug about 0.5 m deep.
The inner part can be lined with boards or lined with branches. Apples are placed on top of them in plastic tied bags of 5 kg each.
The distance between two adjacent packages laid for long-term storage should be at least 0.2 m. Above is an earthen trench:
- is laid by branches;
- covered with soil;
- covered with fallen leaves and branches.
Organized racks make it possible to conveniently and freely arrange apples in one row without touching each other.
This method provides:
- Easy access.
- Convenience of inspection.
- Control over the quality of fruit during storage.
Additional convenience is provided by racks with drawers.
On the balcony
For a city dweller who does not have a cellar or basement at his disposal, a free space on the balcony can be suitable for several boxes of apples. For these purposes, not every balcony is suitable, but only a glazed one that does not have a heating system.
If the conditions on the balcony allow, even a separate thermobox can be organized. Due to the peculiarities of the organization, such a system will maintain a constant temperature and humidity, regardless of external conditions.
Read more about how to store apple harvest on the balcony. here.
The vacuum packaging also allows the apples to be preserved. Such packages:
- keep useful substances in the product;
- prevent the formation of moisture;
- prevent the accumulation of gases that give off fruits.
Methods and technologies for protection from mice and other rodents
To preserve the harvest, it is necessary not only to create suitable conditions, but also to prevent damage to the harvested apples by rodents.
There are several ways to deal with the problem:
- Using poisoned baits. The disadvantage of this method is that dead rodents can become a source of infections.
In addition, with this scenario, domestic cats can seriously suffer, up to death.
- Unfolding near containers with elderberry twigs.
- Use of scarers.
The storage time of the harvested crop depends on a number of factors, including:
- fruit grade:
- quality of apples;
- room temperature, etc.
|Variety||Maximum storage time, months|
|Summer||½ — 1|
|Autumn||Up to 2|
|Winter||4 — 7|
In addition to the factors listed above, the keeping quality of fruits in winter is also affected by fertilizers applied during the season.... An overabundance, as well as a lack of feeding, can significantly reduce the shelf life, affect the appearance of the fruits and their taste.
It should also be borne in mind that apples harvested from old trees are stored longer than from young ones. And from the outside of the crown, and not from the inside, where the fruits receive much less light.
Read about the shelf life of apples of different varieties here.
How to store apple juice?
Natural apple juice, obtained by pressing fresh fruits and not processed, is not stored for a long time. Drink it within an hour of preparation..
Before use, it should be in a glass container under a lid, and in a cool place.
If the juice is prepared for future use, after being squeezed and filtered, it is heated without boiling, and poured into cans, which are sealed. Store the product after cooling in a dark and cool place.
You can learn how to store apple juice, including for the winter. here.
How to store dried fruit properly?
Drying apples allows you to save part of the harvest in the form of dried fruits. The convenience of this method is the ability to use absolutely all varieties of apples and not throw away spoiled ones, since it is enough to simply cut off areas that are not edible.
After drying in any of the ways (from drying naturally in the open air, to processing in special dryers and oven), dried fruits are packed with one of the following options:
- They are placed in glass jars.
- They are packed in bags of thick paper.
After that, the dried fruits are placed in a dry place for storage. Read about the rules for storing dried apples here.
We save the seedlings
Depending on how long the seedling should be stored, the approach to solving the issue is also different.
In cases where the seedling needs to be stored for a long time, a more serious approach is required, including several stages:
- Unpacking and inspection of the roots.
- Root pruning.
- Soil is poured into the container, and the roots are buried.
- The earth is moistened.
- A seedling with a container is removed in a dark, cool place until the time of planting in open ground.
How to save an apple tree seedling before planting in spring, he will tell this article.
Natural marshmallow is one of the ways to harvest apples. This dessert is well kept. You can choose any of the methods:
- in glass jars;
- in linen bags;
- in parchment and containers.
The product is stored under the following conditions:
- temperature is about + 14 ° С;
- air humidity - up to 60%.
Before being sent for storage, the pastille must be very thoroughly dried. Read about how to store apple marshmallow here.
Problems and ways to solve them
In the process of harvesting apples for long-term storage, various difficulties may arise, many of which are quite solvable. Gardeners may face such problems:
|Harvested apples have tails that are too long, which can damage nearby fruits||They can be shortened slightly, but should not be removed entirely.|
|Storage room too dry||A jar of water should be placed next to the apples.|
|Some apples in storage have started to spoil||Go through the entire crop and remove the spoiled fruits|
|Apples placed in a plastic bag in the refrigerator become wet||Dry the fruit and transfer to a new bag in which to make holes for ventilation|
|Lack of sawdust and shavings for pouring layers of apples||Sawdust can be replaced with buckwheat husks, onions, husks||There is a large harvest of summer and autumn apples, which are not kept fresh||Process fruits (make dried fruits, marshmallows, boil compotes, etc.)|
|The natural wax coating from some of the fruits has been erased||Carry out additional processing in one of the ways, for example, with glycerin. Or send the fruit for processing|
|All apples are different - by variety, size||Sort by sort, and among fruits of the same sort - by size|
|Damage to fruits by diseases of fruit rot, scab and others on the tree||They should not be used for long-term storage. If there are spots and deformed areas, the fruit should be discarded||Damage to mold (gray, pink) and other diseases during storage||Affected fruits should be removed from storage||Black or brown spots that grow in size||Why do apples turn black? If the fruits are not too large and collected in time, then the cause of the defect is the high temperature in the vegetable store||Vitreous||High humidity during ripening, as well as storage errors (temperature violations and poor ventilation) can lead to a violation of the formation of the fetus|
A number of problems can be avoided if the apples are sent first to a half-month "quarantine", and after the end of two weeks they are sorted out again, rejecting those that have damage.
What can and can not be together with?
When planning to leave apples for the winter, it must be borne in mind that they are kept separate from other vegetables and fruits... This limitation is due to the fact that the stored apples release ethylene. This chemical stimulates the ripening of nearby fruits.
Is it possible to store apples in the cellar along with potatoes, you can find out here.
Secrets of experienced gardeners
Tips from experienced gardeners will help you better preserve the harvested apple harvest. The main recommendations include the following:
- Gather apples as carefully as possible. They cannot be wiped, poured from container into container, and even less washed, since such actions can damage the natural wax coating on fruits.
- Sorting must be carried out before storage.
- The paper used for wrapping apples before storage must be designed specifically for contact with food and not have a specific odor that can be transmitted to the fruit.
- If during storage the fruits are sprinkled with additional materials, it is necessary to check that they are always dry and cover the apples completely.
- Each unit of container for storage (box, plastic bag, etc.) must contain fruits of the same type.
- Wormy fruits are not suitable for winter storage.
- Picking apples is recommended in good dry weather.
- It is recommended to harvest from the lower branches, gradually moving to the upper ones.
- Apples should be laid with their tails up.
- Bulk storage saves space, but often results in significant crop loss. This is due to the proximity of the fruits, and their contact. Moreover, if one apple deteriorates, the neighboring ones also begin to rot.
- Improper feeding, untimely spraying, too late harvesting and other gardener mistakes can lead to damage to the fruit. Such fruits should not go into storage.
Despite all the efforts, creating ideal conditions for storing fruit in a private house or city apartment can be difficult.
Following the time-tested recommendations, and carefully monitoring the crop left for storage, it is quite possible to save it. At the same time, if everything is done correctly, apples will retain their aroma, appearance and taste.