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Let’s eat! It’s apple season at the Azilda Greenhouses

Royal Gala, McIntosh, Cortlands, Fujis, Empire and Honey Crisp — oh my!

Besides the vibrantly changing beautiful leaves of the trees, apples have become a familiar sign of fall at the Azilda Greenhouse, along Municipal Road 35.

A wide variety of apples are available for sale in bushels, baskets and boxes at the storefront.  

Marian Damm, one of the operators of the greenhouse helps truck the apples in from the Niagara region.  

This is the first year she and some partners have taken over the ownership of the greenhouse.  

Damm said the previous owners also brought in apple varieties from down south and it's something the customers have grown to love and appreciate. 

“People in the south have the luxury of going to the orchard this time of year. Sudburians don't get to do that, so we bring the orchard to them,” she said. 

This year’s variety of fresh apples come from Devries Fruit Farm, which happens to be right around the corner from Damm’s greenhouse properties in the Niagara region.  

“They are picked fresh every Friday and Saturday and then brought up north the following week,” she said.

Located in the storefront are batches of Royal Gala, McIntosh, Cortlands, Fujis, Empire and Honey Crisp.

Two weeks ago, two new varieties were added to the mix.  

The Northern Spy is great for desserts and pies whereas the Mutzu, originally from Japan is sweet, acidic, green and quite large.  

There are also apples for those preparing for the fall deer hunt. Juicing apples are available in another greenhouse on site and sold as hunting bait.

Damm said her favourite apples are the Royal Gala, with its sweet yellow flesh and orange striping, and the Northern Spy, for its old-fashioned taste perfect for making applesauce.  

This year, the operators also trucked in some pear varieties. Bosc pears are cinnamon brown in colour with hints of fall spice, while the Flemish pears are a sweet green and red combination.  

The fall fruit season won’t last too much longer. All the varieties are now in stock at the greenhouse and no more shipments will arrive as the greenhouse prepares for closure until spring.

Fresh apples offer customers opportunities to make applesauce, apple pies, apple crisps and apple strudels.  

But the benefits of eating apples far outweigh the risks. The Canadian Heart and Stroke Foundation website indicates that eating an apple offers your body 10 times more fibre than a cup of apple juice.

Devries Fruit Farm apples can be bought by the bushel or the bag at Azilda Greenhouses.  Prices vary by variety and weight.

The Azilda Greenhouses is located at 300 Carriere Street in Azilda, off Regional Road 35.  

It can be found on Facebook and at its website at AzildaGreenhouses.ca.

The hours of operation are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Saturday.

Anastasia Rioux is a writer in Greater Sudbury. Let’s Eat! is made possible by our Community Leaders Program.