Jeff and Susan Figley purchased the farm in 1983 and chose the name King Blossom because every fruiting spur on an apple tree produces a cluster of six buds—five centered around the largest and first to bloom and called the king blossom. The orchard hadn’t been worked in years so they were given expert advice from the UNH Extension Agency and Cornell. There’s a great video on their website of Bill Lord of UNH Extension Agency showing them how to graft apple trees. Did you know that an apple tree grown from a seed won’t produce apples like the tree it came from? Grafting is the only way to insure getting the same type of fruit.
After the tree closest to his driveway was hit by truck, Jeff decided to use that tree for an experiment to graft a number of different kinds of apple scions to grow different apples on the same tree. As I walked around the tree, I saw Red Delicious, Hudson, and Black Oxford on different branches of the same tree!
Jeff told me that back in the days of the small farms, farmers would grow about six to eight apples trees of different varieties to ripen at different times. A lot of the farms have been abandoned, especially after the devastating 1938 hurricane. Jeff was able to get a nursery tree of the Scott apple cultivar from Bluffside Farm in Newport, Vermont, near where Susan grew up. Now Scott apples are flourishing in their orchard—a living memory of the past.
The lucky orchard has the benefit of their very own bees that Susan and Greg Mourneau of Grantham’s Daisy Hill Farm started keeping ten years ago. Susan loves springtime when she can see the orchard come alive with thousands of pollinating bees, hear their buzzing, and enjoy the heavenly aroma of the blossoms. But don’t wait until spring to visit King Blossom Farm. Take advantage now of the short picking season and head out to the farm and meet Jeff and Susan. They love to share their knowledge and passion for growing apples and fresh vegetables and creating other delights.
Here are links their website and more below: kingblossomfarm.com/