Wednesday, September 03, 2014

apples planted by George

I grew up in a pretty small town in a pretty remote part of Utah. When my great grandpa George Alvin Chappell lived there at the turn of the century, it was even more remote.  The largest town is 60 miles away to the west.  There isn't much to the north, south, or east for about 100 miles.
One day, a loooooooong time ago, a fellow came to town peddling apple tree seedlings.  Two families bought them in town.  The George Alvin Chappell family and the Eric Torgerson family.
George planted them in a pasture close to where the irrigation ditch cut through the pasture.
His son Glen eventually purchased that pasture, and then his son Marion eventually bought that pasture.
Marion remembers sitting in those apples trees with a salt shaker enjoying those apples.  So does his daughter, Rachel. ME.  But I vividly remember hearing the one and only Johnny Appleseed was the one that came peddling apple tree seedlings!
My dad is always full of stories!

On Labor Day, my sweet kids, my dad, and I picked a few buckets of those apples planted by George Alvin Chappell more than a hundred years ago.
Today, Emmitt and I made applesauce with those apples.

It was a great morning together with my boy.
It was fun for him to see the process of how applesauce is made. 
It was fun to have his help.  He loved peeling the apples and he loved mooshing the apples through the old fashioned food processor.  But most of all, he loved eating the warm, delicious applesauce.
He kept telling me to add more sugar and cinnamon, silly boy.


It was a good day. A busy day.
I also got a good hold of this monstrosity of a shrub and took some pruners to it.
Vanhoutte Spirea is also called BRIDALWREATH because when it flowers, the white flowers flow downwards like a waterfall and I guess that looks like a bridal wreath. 
It is an old variety of shrub.  It was popular in the Midwest. 
I can just imagine a Nebraska farmhouse a hundred years ago with this shrub in the yard.
Native Americans used it to treat venereal diseases and a tea of spirea helped with abdominal pain.  I would imagine some young brides had a handful of it for their mid-summer weddings as well.

I guess I've had a bit of a nostalgic day.
I think I better go sew for a bit this evening and enjoy my nostalgia.
Anyway, my shrub looks much better than this now, and I found the long lost strawberry patch under all those branches I trimmed away.


Kerin said...

Love this post!!
Gathering old apples reminds me of going to Capitol Reef, and gathering fruit inside old Fruita.
Those old apple varieties are so flavorful!!!

Oh, I love bridal wreath spirea!!
You taught me things about the plant that I didn't know, however.
Very interesting stuff.

Have a great day!!


Rachel said...

You know I love Capitol Reef right? My other set of grandparents live down there. My great grandpa helped plant many of the orchards in Fruita.
I think we are connected! lol


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