∗ Only sour crab apple trees were native to America, until European settlers arrived and brought with them their English customs and favorite fruits. Native Americans appropriated what they liked, cultivating apples extensively.
∗ Americans´ fondness for seedling orchards − that is, orchards grown from seeds rather than propagation by grafting − resulted in many hundreds of new varieties more suited to the native environment. By the turn of the nineteenth century, most varieties offered by professional nurseries were native to America. Professional nurseryman Andrew Jackson Downing recorded 600 varieties in his tome published in 1859.
∗ The first American orchard was planted around 1625 by William Blackstone on Boston´s Beacon Hill. The first governor of Massachusetts Bay Colony, William Endicott, was a distinguished orchardist. Endicott´s account book noted his children had set fire to part of his operation, destroying 500 trees, a very considerable operation at that time in history. Well-known American apple orchardists include George Washington and Thomas Jefferson.
∗ The first American to orbit the Earth, astronaut John Glenn, carried pureed applesauce in squeezable tubes on his initial space flight. Ham with applesauce was served to Gemini astronauts.