Apples have long been the subject of stories, myths, and legends and symbolize wisdom, fertility, knowledge, and sensuality. In Greek mythology, Gaia gave Zeus and Hera apples as a wedding gift; one of Heracles twelve labors involved an apple (he was required to travel to the Garden of the Hesperides and pick the golden apples off the Tree of Life); apples are considered to be the forbidden fruit that led to the “fall of man” in the Garden of Eden; when Paris of Troy awarded the prize apple to Aphrodite, it incited the Trojan War; and many more.
Did you know . . .
- that there are more than 2,500 varieties of apples grown in the United States, but only the crabapple is native to North America?
- that apples contain no fat, sodium or cholesterol and are a good source of fiber?
- that it takes apple trees four to five years to produce their first fruit?
- that apples ripen six to 10 times faster at room temperature than if they are refrigerated?
- that apple varieties range in size from a little larger than a cherry to as large as a grapefruit?
- that the largest apple ever picked weighed 3 pounds?
- that apples harvested from an average tree can fill 20 boxes that weigh 42 pounds each?
- that apples are a member of the rose family?
- that the top apple producers around the world are China, United States, Turkey, Poland and Italy?
- that apples account for 50 percent of international deciduous fruit tree production?
- that a peck of apples weighs 10.5 pounds?
- that it takes about 36 apples to create one gallon of apple cider?
Source of facts: United States Apple Association