‘Ghost apples’ appear at Michigan orchard following icy weather

Freezing rain this week caused an icy spectacle to form at an orchid near Sparta, Michigan: so-called “ghost apples.”

Local resident Andrew Sietsema first spotted the odd phenomenon while pruning apple trees in the Fruit Ridge area of Kent County. He later took to Facebook with photos of the glass-looking orbs, dubbing the icy creation “ghost apples.”

Freezing rain coated the rotting apples, which were a variety known as Jonagold. Later, when Sietsema began to prune the trees, “mush” fell out the bottom of the icy shells, leaving only the encasements behind, he told Fox News on Friday.

“Jonagolds are one of my favorite apple varieties, but we’ll call these ‘Jonaghosts,'” he joked. (Andrew Sietsema)

“I guess it was just cold enough that the ice covering the apple hadn’t melted yet, but it was warm enough that the apple inside turned to complete mush (apples have a lower freezing point than water),” he said. “And when I pruned a tree it would be shaken in the process, and the mush would slip out of the bottom of the ‘ghost apple.'”

While most of the apples fell off of the trees — ice and all — “quite a few would leave a cool ‘ghost apple’ behind,” he continued, joking the creations could also be called “Jona-ghosts.”

As of Friday afternoon, Sietsema’s photos of the ghost apples had been shared roughly 10,000 times.


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