Apples grow throughout Italy all year long. In some cases, the quality is the same from September, when they are picked, until the following August when the previous years harvest is depleted. The secret? Storing the harvest in a nitrogen environment which slows down the ripening process.
A trip in springtime on the old narrow gauge, the Vaca Nonesa, through the ideal environment of the Val di Non, a long wide valley just north of Trento, transports you into a wave of white apple blossoms which rolls up the valley as the daily temperatures increase. Throughout the summer a wave of ripening Golden Delicious follows in the footprints of the blossoms. Fewer and fewer apple trees here though… the apples nowadays are mostly grown on vines!
Migrant apple pickers follow the harvest all autumn long, which culminates with the Pomaria. My wife and I have had the distinct pleasure of spending a day coir pomi (dialect for picking apples). And, like the migrant workers, we received safety instructions for working in the old trees… and a nice day’s wage as well!
— Kindly contributed by Michael Yaccino, ItalianNotebook.com reader. Thank you!!