Taste pears & 100 different apples this weekend- Chicago area

This weekend let MidFEx (Midwest Fruit Explorers - www.midfex.org) help you decide which of the many varieties of apples and fruiting plants to grow. At our Fall Harvest Festival we will have on display over 100 different varieties of apples, many antique or heritage varieties, some of them going back to colonial and even Roman times, and also the best of the new. You will find sweet, tart, dessert, and russet apples that were bred for taste, not for long shelf life and appearance like supermarket apples.
MidFEx is a non-profit backyard fruit-growing club for the Midwest. Our Fall Harvest Festival is held at the Chicago Botanic Gardens on Saturday October 18 and Sunday October 29, between 10 AM and 4:00 PM. MidFEx members will be on hand to display fruit grown in their yards, and give you advice on how to chose, purchase, plant, and take care of fruit trees. Starting at 1:00 PM on Sunday, the second day of the show, all the fruit on display will be cut up so you can sample its taste. This includes all the apples, pears, and other interesting and unusual fruit including Asian pears and paw-paw. You can decide which variety to plant, picking out the flavor and texture that pleases you the most.
Do you want to buy some of these apples to take home? Selected varieties will be offered for sale. Also, apple and peach butters, taffy apples, and apple cider will be for sale. We will offer demonstrations at various times daily on making apple cider using our club's cider press.
You can also enjoy the many permanent garden exhibits at the Chicago Botanic Gardens such as the Japanese Garden, the English Walled Garden, and the Fruit and Vegetable Garden which is on its own 4 acre island. Visit this island and see many uncommon fruiting plants like kiwi, paw paw, elderberry, juneberry, examples of espalier fruit growing; and a series of identical apple trees growing on different dwarfing rootstock.
The Chicago Botanic Garden is located about 15 miles north of Chicago. Parking for non-members of the Chicago Botanic Gardens is $8.75, but all the exhibits are free. For detailed directions to the Botanic Garden and a complete description of our festival check out the MidFEx web site at www.midfex.org. Our web site is chock full of info for the backyard fruit grower, including recommended varieties of fruits and nuts and a virtual tour of a 50 by 50 foot backyard with 97 mini-dwarf apple trees (94 different varieties!).

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