Oct. 3 Evening Meeting — Apples in New Hampshire: Utility, Beauty, and History

Presented by Justin Kane

Justin Kane

Though the New Hampshire state fruit is a pumpkin, apples may have a stronger claim. Most settled places in Amherst and throughout NH are within sight of at least one apple tree, wild or domestic. Apples have been a part of New England history since the early 1600s, and yet hundreds of varieties that were once common have disappeared as regional economies and markets have shifted.

Even today, though, few towns are without a commercial orchard or two, and the old (sometimes very old!) varieties live on in backyards, back fields, and even at the back of what are now parking lots. Both old and new varieties of apple are reproduced by grafting, an easy-to-learn technique. Apple enthusiast Justin Kane will talk about setting up to graft your own apples, apple history and backyard cultivation, and New Hampshire’s own interesting varieties like Granite Beauty, Nodhead, and the still-missing Calef Sweet, in this 45-minute presentation.

Justin will have a couple of grafted apples as door prizes for those who are interested.

About Justin

Justin Kane trained as a horticulturist under John Forti at Strawbery Banke Museum. He has been fascinated and intrigued by plants most of his life, both for the part they play in human culture and for their edible and medicinal properties. He teaches Comprehensive Technology Education (Shop) at Wilton-Lyndeborough High School, where his students learn to graft apple trees and manage a willow coppice, among other skills. He lives in Brentwood, NH, where he and his family keep bees, propagate heirloom apple trees, and grow a variety of other edible fruits, berries, leaves, fungi, and tubers.

Evening meetings are held at Parkhurst Place, 11 Veterans Road, Amherst, NH.

Evening meetings begin at 7:00 p.m. with a short business meeting followed by an informative program/speaker, ending at 8:30 pm.

Guests are welcome to attend the business meeting as well as the program at no charge. Light refreshments are served following the speaker.