One of the highlights of your visit should be the Apple Orchard. The orchard began as a passion of Thomas and Edna Carpenter in the early 40’s and continues today! The mission of our modern day orchard is to grow high quality produce in an ecological and sustainable manner.
If you haven’t tried Carpenter Nature Center’s apples, you are missing out on some of the tastiest and healthiest apples in Minnesota!
Besides apples, the Apple Shack has lots other goods for sale. The fall bearing raspberries ripen and are ready to be picked from late August until a hard freeze (usually October); pumpkins, gourds, squash, honey, and decorative corn will be available later in September. We also offer a large selection of jams, jellies, syrups, salad dressings, and delicious apple salsa. Our wildflower honey is extracted from the bee hives in early September and is available while supplies last.
Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
Our apples are pro udly grown with integrated pest management techniques. If we don’t have to spray with chemicals, we won’t! Wherever possible , alternative methods are used. The result? Safer, healthier apples for you and your family!
IPM employs biological and cultural practices to keep pest populations below damaging levels.
This includes scouting for pests, using insect pheromones to either trap insects directly or disrupt their mating cycle, and sanitation of the orchard through removal of all windfall apples and any dead or diseased wood.
If chemicals are needed, CNC selects an effective product that requires the least number of applications and also has the least impact on the environment.
This picture shows two methods of biological controls: apple maggot trap with attractant scent, and (partially visible as an orange twist-tie) coddling moth mating disruption pheromone.
Varieties of Apples We Grow
|Zestar!||late August||sweet & spicy, very flavorful, juicy|
|Sweet Tango||late August||sweet with a hint of tart, juicy, crisp|
|Chestnut Crab||early September||large crabapple, crisp, juicy, spicy flavor|
|Sweet 16||mid September||sweet, firm, med-acid|
|McIntosh||mid September||tart, firm, soft when cooked|
|Haralson||mid-late September||tart, crisp|
|Honeycrisp||mid-late September||explosively crisp, juicy, sweet/slightly tart|
|Cortland||late September||tart, firm, good in salad, aromatic|
|Honey Gold||September/October||sweet, crisp, juicy|
|Fireside and Connell Red||September/October||sweet, firm|
|Regent||September/October||crisp, juicy, tart|
|Keepsake||October||hard, sweet, aromatic, long storage capability|
For questions or further information on our orchard, please contact our Horticulturist.