Apple Picking Tips: Best Time for Apple Picking


By Jessica D Festa

The best time for apple picking has come again! And we’ve got great apple picking tips to help make your fall adventure as seamless (and delicious!) as possible. Autumn is already a beautiful season thanks to the changing foliage, and enjoying a day outdoors with the family is a fun way to make memories—not to mention stock up on some healthy ingredients. Just make sure to know:

What to Pick

Just as location dictates the best time for picking apples, it also plays a role in what’s available. However, there are a few common varieties in the US to keep your eye out for:

  • Red Delicious. Crisp, slightly sweet, and even a bit tart. If you don’t enjoy this variety from the supermarket, try it from the orchard. The ones you pick will pack more flavor!
  • McIntosh. These sweet apples have a soft mouthfeel and are best enjoyed raw (versus baked, as they fall apart).
  • Golden Delicious. Crisp, juicy, and mildly sweet, this yellow-hued apple goes great in apple pie, apple fritters, and apple sauce.
  • Honeycrisp. Tart with a touch of honey. They’re delicious in baked goods (like apple crisp!), potato-apple latkas, and if you’re feeling loose, sangria!

What to Bring

Typically, orchards are sited in stunning locations—made even prettier by the vibrant foliage. As you make memories with loved ones, you’ll want to capture it on film. Go retro with a Polaroid Snap Camera from Kohl’s, or use your smartphone and send the prints to Shutterfly to have a beautiful photo book crafted. It’s a great way to have the day live on.

You’ll definitely want to take a photo of people getting the apples—even if they’re not tall. That’s where a fruit picker from Walmart comes in handy. Being able to pick your fruit without climbing and shaking the trees is also better for the environment, as it leads to less waste through dropped apples.

Additionally, while most orchards supply bags, it’s smart to bring your own reusable one. Luckily, there are a ton of stylish options on the market, like these strawberry-accented totes from Newegg. The orchard will appreciate it, as will Mother Nature.

Apple Picking Tips

You can tell an apple is ripe when it’s easily plucked. If it holds on, choose another. It’s also wise to start at the ends of the branches, where apples tend to ripen quickest. Apples stop ripening once picked, so ensure the fruit is actually ready to be taken.

Speaking of taken, remember when picking to pull and twist gently. If you shake the tree, you may cause many apples to fall and, as mentioned above, become waste.

And those questionable bruised apples? Don’t add them to your bag! Not only are they not as tasty, but once they begin rotting, they’ll ruin the other apples around them.

Don’t Forget . . .

When it’s the best time for apple picking, there are other things to consider, too. For one, many pickers love taking daytrips with their pets. Research local orchards to find one that best suits what you want, both in terms of pet policies and other amenities. For example, many orchards offer other fruit-picking activities, hay rides, wine tastings, and petting zoos.

You might also consider making a weekend of it, since many orchards are in beautiful locations. Wyndham Hotels & Resorts offers spectacular deals across more than 8,000 welcoming properties worldwide.

Picnicking can be a fun way to refuel. Check if the orchard has picnic tables, and pair your fresh fruit with homemade delights packed in a Wayfair Picnic Backpack. While picnic baskets are cute, this stylish backpack is more practical, sitting comfortably on your back as you pluck juicy McIntosh and Gala from the trees. Bonus: When you’re done, you can use the backpack to buy artisanal goods from the farm shop.

With these apple picking tips, you’ll make the most of this fall favorite.

A Wayfair Picnic Backpack is the perfect addition to your apple picking experience!


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