Silva’s Apple Orchards
Eugene (Gene) Silva
2642 Freedom Boulevard
Watsonville, CA 95076
Markets: Aptos, Monterey, Del Monte
Products: CCOF certified organic apples, peaches, persimmons, pears, lemons and seasonal fresh pressed apple cider.
History/Philosophy: Silva’s Apple Orchards, a small family run farm in Watsonville, has been growing organic and non-organic tree-ripened apples on 80 acres since 1954. Gene Silva, a second-generation grower, started helping his parents with the business in the early 1960s. The apple varieties grown include Red Delicious, Mutsu, Fuji, Jonagold, Gravenstein, Bell Flower, Jonathan, Pearman, Winesap, Red Summerfelt, and Black Twig. In 2004, peach trees were planted on five acres. The peaches, which ripen late spring and early summer, include Early Redhaven, Redhaven, Artic Gem, Rio Oso Gem, and Loring.
Patty Silva, our friendly “apple lady” oversees their busy booth at three of our farmers markets, including the Aptos Farmers Market, Monterey Farmers Market, and Del Monte Farmers Market. On the days she isn’t at the farmers markets, she runs the family fruit stand on Freedom Boulevard. In addition, apples are available wholesale and retail from their packing facility and they offer Christmas gift boxes of apples for shipping during the holidays.
And, yes, Patty has made her share of apple pies! When asked about her favorite ways to prepare apples, she didn’t hesitate a second. “My favorite apple pie is made with half Mutsu and half Jonagold apples. I love to bake apple crisp, too. I add apples to pork chops and roasts. I even barbeque apples! But, now that the kids are grown, I don’t bake as much. Now, I simply sauté apple slices in a little butter, sugar and cinnamon until they’re soft and pour it over ice cream.”
Patty also clarified what the difference is between apple cider and apple juice. “Apple cider is the unprocessed, freshly pressed juice from apples, contains pulp sediment and is cloudy. Apple juice is filtered and is clear”
If you’re out and about on a weekend drive through the farm country in Watsonville, be sure to stop by Silva’s Apple Orchards fruit stand and say hello—you’ll receive a warm welcome and go home with a bag of the sweetest, juiciest apples you’ve ever tasted!