If the apples haven't already been baked in this freakishly tropical October heatwave Chicago's presently wilting under, we're hoping to round up a few of the 20 different varieties of apples Kuipers Family Farm's grows tomorrow morning. But reading Michael Pollan's The Botany of Desire has me aspiring to one day make it over to Geneva, New York. It's here, as Pollan writes,
...on the banks of Seneca Lake, in excellent apple-growing country, a government outfit called the Plant Genetic Resource Unit maintains the world's largest collection of apple trees. Some 2,500 different varieties have been gathered from all over the world and set out here in pairs, as if on an a beached botanical ark. The card catalog of this fifty-acre tree archive runs the pomological gamut from Adam's Pearmain, an antique English apple, to the German Zucalmagio. In between a browser will find almost every variety discovered in America since Roxbury Russet distinguished itself in a cider orchard outside Boston in 1645.
A museum of apples. Imagine the apple pies you could make! The apple fritters!