"One hears a lot about the rules of good husbandry; there is only one — leave the land far better than you found it."
- George Henderson, The Farming Ladder
 Wanted - Alive!

All around Maine, ancient apple trees are showing their colors. Somewhere out there, some trees have produced a few rare heirloom apple varieties that MOFGA would like to know about. You may have unknowingly seen them in your travels, perhaps not giving them much thought. But, you should. They are some of many rare local varieties that played a key role in Maine’s small scale diversified agriculture for nearly three hundred years. Listed below are some varieties and their likely general locations. We think we may have located three of them, and we are working with folks in different regions of the state to verify the discoveries. If you think you know the location of one of these ancient trees, please call MOFGA Board member, John Bunker at 207-993-2837. Thanks!

Variety: Briggs Auburn
Details and likely location: Briggs Auburn (also called "Briggs") is a classic old apple that originated in Minot. Briggs Auburn originated before on the farm of Thomas Record of the town of Minot, then part of Auburn. It was later popularized by John C. Briggs. The fruit is large, oblate (slightly flattened), mostly yellow and blushed with red. It’s ripe now and will keep into the winter. It was popular in the area and old trees should still exist. We have located one in Waldo County, but never one near Auburn.

Variety: Carll Apple
Details and likely location: The Carll apple is a classic old variety that originated in Saco. Carll originated about two hundred years ago on the farm of Elias Carll (b. 1787) near the location of the old "Heath Meeting House" in North Saco up Route 112 towards Dayton, perhaps on the Heath Road. All we know is that the Carll Apple was "a superior fruit, highly prized, and sought after for years." There is a small church where the Meeting House might have been. Look for a really ancient tree and you may have found it. Download "Wanted - Alive" poster of Carll Apple.

Variety: Cherry Pippin and Major Small
Details and likely location: These two varieties are classic old apples that originated in Carmel. The two apples originated in the Damascus area of Carmel about 130 years ago. Cherry Pippin is roundish in shape, yellow, striped with red spots and dotted with tiny pin points of dark green. Major Small is medium in size and flattish in shape. The coloring is dull green with large green spots and a dull rosy blush.

Variety: Collins Apple
Details and likely location: Collins (also called "Cherryfield") is a classic old apple that originated in Cherryfield. Collins originated in 1850 on the farm of Wyman B. Collins and was largely popularized by David W. Campbell. The original tree was still standing in 1907. It was extensively grafted trees in the vicinity of Cherryfield so trees should still be standing in the area. The fruit is large, roundish-conic, yellowish green and washed and splashed on the sunny side with crimson. The flesh is greenish-white, crisp, tender, fine grained, mild and tart. It ripens late, its season being from November to February or perhaps later. Download "Wanted - Alive" poster of Collins (Cherryfield) Apple.

Variety: Franklin Sweet Apple
Details and likely location:
Franklin Sweet is believed to have orginated in Franklin County. The tree is vigorous and its spreading is productive. The fruit is large, roundish and conical, whitish yellow overlaid with crimson with stripes and spalshes of deeper crimson. This variety was a favorite with many for baking and dessert. Download "Wanted - Alive" poster of Franklin Sweet Apple.

Variety: Given’s Apple
Details and likely location: Givens is a classic old apple that originated in Topsham. Givens originated in 1850 on the farm of a Samuel Givens who lived in Topsham. The fruit should be easy to spot. It’s mostly red and conic. It would something like a Red Delicious only without the points around the blossom end. It would also be found only on a really old tree. The flesh is white, juicy and tart. It would be ripe right now.

Variety: Haynes’ Sweet
Details and likely location: Haynes’ Sweet (also called "Haynes") is a classic old apple that originated in Swanville. Haynes’ Sweet originated in 1835 on the farm of a Mr. Haynes of Swanville who lived near the Searsport line. The large fruit, is oblong, yellow, washed and splashed with scarlet. The stem is short and stout inserted into a broad, shallow, slightly russeted (brown) cavity. The basin (blossom end) is shallow, and slightly irregular. The flesh is yellowish, coarse grained and sweet. It was last seen in Swanville many years ago. It might also be somewhere in Searsport, near the farm formerly owned by John Nickels. Download "Wanted - Alive" poster of Haynes' Sweet Apple.

Variety: Hoyt Sweet Apple
Details and likely location: Hoyt Sweet (also called "Hoyt Sweeting") is a classic old apple that originated in Franklin County. Hoyt Sweet originated about 1830 on the farm of a Mr. Hoyt in Franklin County. It was best known around Hallowell and Manchester, growing especially well on the east side of Cobbossee Lake. The medium size fruit is conical, with unusual coloring. It’s greenish brown, or one side greenish, the other russety brown with numerous small black and red dots. This was a late fall dessert apple that stored into May, with flesh greenish yellow, moderately firm, juicy and rich in flavor.

Variety: Narragansett Apple
Details and likely location:
The Narragansett Apple originated on the farm of Jacob H Harmon, in Buxton, ME in 1873. The tree was reported as a free grower and very hardy but a rather shy bearer. The fruit is medium to conical, pale yellow, washed and spalshed with crimson and heavily overlaid with a deeper shade of crimson on the sunny side with numerous small white dots. Download "Wanted - Alive" poster of Narragansett Apple.


  You are here:  EventsGreat Maine Apple Day   
Great Maine Apple Day


Sponsored by MOFGA, Fedco, and the University of Maine Cooperative Extension


Sunday, October 18, 2015
12 noon to 4:00 p.m. Rain or Shine

Doors open at 11:30 a.m.

held at the
Common Ground Education Center
294 Crosby Brook Rd, Unity Maine

$4 for non-members, $2 for members
Kids get in free!

Celebrate the history, flavor and tradition of Maine apples, while honoring the importance of a diversified, perennial agriculture.

WORKSHOPS: Featured Apple Day events will include a hands-on kitchen workshop with chef Frank Giglio of Three Lily Farm on making hard apple "cyser," a type of mead. David Smith of Sparky's Apiaries will speak on Beginning Beekeeping. Several other workshops are planned as well.

DELICIOUS TREATS: Apple cheddar pizza, apple hand pies, soups, cornbread, scones, ice cream, honey, homemade chocolate, maple syrup
and chaga tea. We will even have gluten-free apple cake!

GOODS TO BUY: Maine-made wooden cheeseboards, beeswax candles, cookbooks, books for children and gardening books, pie contest and much more!


2015 Schedule
Time Library (Upstairs) Downstairs Office
Common Kitchen On the Grounds Exhibition Hall – All Day
12:00 noon
      12:30  Maine Heritage Orchard Tour
(Meet at the front of education center)

Apple Identification

Apple Tastings

Cider Making


Apple and Cider Sales

2:00 Apple Pie Contest

1:00 p.m.
Spraying the Home Orchard for Beginners with John Paul Rietz, Out On A Limb   Cooking and Fermenting with Apples with Frank Giglio, Three Lily Farm
2:00 p.m. Craft Cider Making in Maine
with Angus Deighan
3:00 p.m. Beginning Beekeeping with David Smith, Sparky's Apiaries      

Spraying the Home Orchard with John Paul Rietz
Keep your crop safe by learning how to properly spray using organic methods. Learn when to spray and what to spray to keep off predators and protect your orchard.

Cooking and Fermenting with Apples with Frank Giglio
Learn the basics of making use of this fall’s harvest. Learn to cook multiple dishes and ferment beverages with your apple crop.

Apple Pie Contest

Guidelines: Made from local apples; provide a list of ingredients and a short description of the pie or recipe (if applicable). Our judges are a round-about group of people who love eating pie (not pie connoisseurs)!

Craft Cider Making in Maine with Angus Deighan

Cider is up and coming! Come and learn how to make your own craft cider. Angus will cover what you need to have and what you need to know to get started.

Beginning Beekeeping with David Smith

How to get started with bees. The basics on what you need to know to have your own apiary.

Educational Workshops & Talks
• Apple art
• Cooking with apples
• Maine's rich apple history
• Cider making
• Organic tree care

See & Taste Rare & Heirloom Apples
Bring your own varieties to show and taste

• Cider pressing
• Apple pie contest

Identifying your Mystery Variety
Our dream team of Maine apple identifiers will help you identify your apples

Tour the new Maine Heritage Orchard with Todd Little-Siebold at 12:30 pm

Fun things to eat and buy from ...

Balfour Farm

Fedco Seeds

Island Farm Kitchen

Müller's Fruit Farm

Out On A Limb

Sparky's Apiaries

Stone Fox Farm Creamery

The Sugar Tree

Three Lily Foods LLC



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