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Q: do apples with worms ripen earlier? Answered

hi, maybe i am just hallucinating, or its age, or its the heat, etc... but it seems every years when its about time for the heavens to gift us apples, and me checking the trees, the very first ´ripe´ apples are the one that got worms, or other form of ´damage´. ... is it just me?.... and if not, whats the chemical process behind that. gracias & greetings de los picos de europa

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Jack A Lopez

8 weeks ago

I have anecdotal evidence this is true.

By that I mean I have a neighbor with a bunch of fruit trees, and he tells me this is the case: fruit damaged by worm, insect, bird, etc, tends to ripen faster. Moreover the trend applies to fruits beside just apples, e.g. peaches, apricots, pears, and maybe other fruits.

I have no idea what the mechanism is.

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la xerraJack A Lopez

Reply 8 weeks ago

thanks mr rabbit

ps, plant you ´own´ * fruit-trees... until you run out of seeds.
pps, *, how utterly bizarre that one can o w n a tree....

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Downunder35m

8 weeks ago

Oxidisation...
Once damaged this causes the fuit to "ripen" quicker.
But this is onle the looks, vital things like taste, vitamins and such suffer from this.
The first to ripen are also the first to be targeted by insects and birds.
So you get a double hit so to say.

Take a fresh apple and cut it half.
Eat one half right away.
Cut a slice off the other hhalf once it turns slightly brown and taste this slice - it will be sweeter in taste.
You can also make a "packaging" test:
Take two fresh apples and clean one with warm water and some cloth or paper.
Don't just give it a quick shine, clean it so the protective wax coating on the skin if off.
Leave this apple out with an uncleaned on and check how differently they continue to age or ripen ;)
Part of this process releases acetylen gas, which is the reason why for examples green banas ripen very quickly if placed in a bag with some fresh apples ;)

Last but not least enzymes play role.
For a dmaged fruit or one attacked by your worm these enzymes will change the fruit and how it further ripens.
You might have noticed that a small damage early on the tree usually heals fine and just gives you a slightly deformed apple.
Happened later when the fruit is already properly developed and it usually goes bad on the tree.
Any insect eating into it also releases enzymes when digesting and as part of their eating process.
Some of these enzymes are aimed to "protect" the apple.
Means the damaged areas won't rot for example so that the poor thing does not have to seek out a new apple.
They signal the tree that the apple is fine but also that it is ripe enough.
In return the tree sends a different nutrient mix to the fruit.
And well, those signal the fruit it is time to be done with the ripening....

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la xerraDownunder35m

Reply 8 weeks ago

Oxiwhatthehell?.... ok, will read up on *oxidisation*, (does one have to learn in this damn life always somethinkg new?), cheers.

btw, you guys (guys?) here kinda scare me - you seem to know it about all. you should be outlawed. you are dangerous, haha.