French Jesuit missionaries planted apple seeds in the Michigan wilderness more than a century before the travels of Johnny Appleseed. Seedlings grew into giant fruit-bearing trees that provided tangy apples to pioneers who followed. As the Detroit settlement grew, grafted apple trees were planted. By the late 1700s, orchards that bloomed with Fameuse, Calville Blanc d'Hiver, Pomme Gris and Detroit Red rivaled those of New England, and even President Thomas Jefferson received scions of Detroit trees to plant at his Monticello estate. Today, 850 farms boast over nine million apple trees. Sample the seasons of Michigan's apple history with author Sharon Kegerreis, from early settlements to today's vibrant industry.
About the Author
Sharon Kegerreis is co-author of two previous books on Michigan wine, one of which was a 2008 Michigan Notable Book. She is passionate for Michigan and enjoys outdoor and travel adventures and gardening. Sharon grew up in Charlevoix with a big apple tree in the backyard. For more than a decade, she has lived in Chelsea with her family, where she has been working hard to grow apple trees on her unruly five acres.
Sharon Steffens has been actively involved in the apple industry since the 1960s. She picketed apple juice processors in the 1970s and became involved in state and national women agricultural organizations. The Steffens family settled in west Michigan in the 1800s.
Table of Contents
Foreword Sharon Steffens 9
1 Veritable Paradise of Fruits 15
2 Markets Bloom 37
3 Apples to Apples 55
4 Four Seasons 63
5 Into the Orchards 77
6 Tastes of History 89
7 The Hunt for Sweet October 101
8 The Intoxicating Apple 113
Epilogue: Plant It Forward 127
Appendix: Glossary and Resources 133
Works Cited 137
About the Author 157