Contributors to the chapter: From the Orchard
Christmas Cove Farm
11573 Kilcherman Road, on Grand Traverse Bay
Started in the 1970s; John and Phyllis Kilcherman grow more than 240 varieties of heirloom apples; they also run a mail-order operation; open from mid-September until November.
Tree Mendus Fruit Farms
9351 E. Eureka Road, Eau Claire
More than 230 varieties of antique apples at this 450-acre working farm, preserved by curator Herb Teichman from a collection of old-time varieties, including Margil, Fallwater/Tulpenhocken, Holiday, and Golden Russet. Three types of cider made at Tree Mendus: cherry apple, dark apple, and heritage cider. Also RentATree opportunities (prices from $20 to $150, depending on size, variety). How it works: You pick a tree, the orchard staff performs all normal care, and in the fall, you come back to harvest your apples.
Eastman’s Antique Apples
1058 W. Midland-Gratiot County Line Road, Wheeler, MI 48662
(989) 842-5576 or (989) 854-6264
Cindy and Tom Ward own and operate her family’s antique apple orchard, with more than 4,000 trees and hundreds of varieties. Sons, Casey and Rafe, help sell Knobbed Russet, the ugliest apple in the world; Kandil Sinap, the Turkish apple shaped like a candle; Golden Nugget and King of the Pippin, for making great cider; and Flower of Kent, the apple that fell to the ground when Sir Issac Newton discovered gravity. Eastman’s apples are at the Midland farmers market on Wednesday and Saturday in season.
3441 Morton Road, Ludington, MI 49431
The small family-owned and operated orchard specializes in top-quality tree-ripened fruit, including peaches, plums, nectarines, apricots and apples, plus blackberries, grapes, and Christmas trees. Open 9 a.m.-5 p.m. July through September. Please call first.
Kismet Fruit Farm & Bakery
1776 68th Street, Fennville, MI, 49408
Mari and Chris Reijmerink farm 23 acres in Allegan County, raising organic fruit, select vegetables, and laying hens. The farm is certified organic. The Bakery (opening June 2012) produces pastry rich with their farm’s fruit and hearth baked, crusty loaves. Their offerings are available at the farm’s road stand, please check the web site for the 2012 opening date and seasonal hours.
McManus Southview Orchards
313 Garfield Road North, Traverse City, MI 49684
Open seven days a week, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Pick or purchase cherries from mid-July through early August. At the McManus marketplace, find a wide variety of seasonal, locally grown fruits and vegetables, including apples, cherries, sweet corn, onions, pumpkins, raspberries, tomatoes, winter squash.