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Frequently Asked Questions


What are your Hours?


Monday-Saturday 10-6

CLOSED Sundays

Is there a "gate" fee?

Unlike some of the larger orchards that have devised clever ways of emptying your pockets, Maple Ridge Orchard doesn't have gate fees, per person fees, activity fees, or any of the like.  We've designed our orchard to be a "park like" setting where you can bring the family and know that when you leave here, you'll still be able to pay the rent.


Do you allow Pets?

No. Due to the new Food Safety Regulations (FSMA), we can no longer allow you to bring your pets to the orchard. Only service dogs are permitted. This is a huge change for us, as customers have been bringing their pets to our orchard since we started. Please know that this change is made under duress!

How do you know which apples are ready?
"Ask the farmer!"

Okay, so you're lost in the Pick-Your-Own block, here's what you do: Select firm, well colored, bruise-free apples. Honestly, the key will be to ask the farmer which varieties are ripe. The farmer will know which characteristics to look for in the particular varieties that he is growing.  That being said, one indicator is the color of the seeds; seeds should be brown to dark brown when the apple is ripe...not white.

What is the correct way to pick an apple?

Picking apples directly from a tree is easy. Roll the apple upwards off the branch and give a little twist; don't pull straight away from the tree. If two apples are joined together at the top, get ready to catch, because both will come away at the same time. Do not shake the trees or branches, more fruit will fall unnecessarily. If the apple you are trying to pick drops, (or others on the tree) go ahead and pick it up; they're perfectly fine!

Are your apple trees sprayed?

All our apple trees are sprayed several times over the growing season. The more you grow of any one crop the bigger the problem. While one tree in your backyard may escape some pests, many trees tend to attract and harbor lots of pests and diseases.

Unlike the larger orchards that spray on a commercial schedule (whether needed or not), we try to spray only when it is absolutely necessary.  We use as few chemicals as possible, and only when pests reach excessive thresholds. We also utilize a technique called Integrated Pest Management (IPM) to help lessen the amount of spraying and cost. An example would be controlling mites. European Red Mites are extremely small insects that attack apples by sucking the juices from the leaves. These mites can actually destroy all the leaves on the tree, ultimately killing the tree itself. Luckily, they have several natural enemies like ladybugs, lacewings, and other mites. We try to use insecticides that do not kill these natural predators, but encourage them to kill the harmful insects.

Diseases called scab, cedar apple rust, sooty blotch, and others can have serious negative impacts on human health. These diseases can be managed with protectorants that are not systemic and won't make their way into the fruit.  Something you should know: fruit labeled "organic" doesn't mean No Spray - it means they sprayed chemicals with "organic" based compounds.

How long will your La Crosse area orchard be open this year?

Maple Ridge Orchard will be open through the first Saturday in November. We hope we leave you wanting more and look forward to seeing you (at least) one more time before we close! We love our customers, and every new year is a "family" reunion for us. Without you, our valued customer, we would not be here. Thank you!

Is it safe to eat apples off the tree?

Generally it is safe to eat apples right off the tree, but remember to check for yellow jackets before you pick one.  We stop spraying all the trees mid August, so by September/October, any residue you see is totally out for bird "poop". Any dirt you may see on the apples is simply rain and dirt from the wind. They are perfectly safe to eat.   

Apple Fun Facts!

  • 2500 varieties of apples are grown in the United States.

  • 7500 varieties of apples are grown throughout the world.

  • About 100 different varieties of apples are grown commercially in the United States.

  • A bushel of apples typically weighs between 40-42 lbs.

  • Apples are grown commercially in 36 states.

  • Apples are grown in all 50 states.

  • 61% of United States apples are eaten as fresh fruit.

  • The other 39% of apples are processed into apple products.

  • The top apple producing state is Washington, producing over 60% of the nations apples.

  • Apples are a great source of the fiber pectin. One apple has five grams of fiber.

  • In 2001 there were 8,000 apple growers with orchards covering 430,200 acres. In 2005, there were 7,500 apple growers with orchards covering 379,000 thaere only about 5,000 orchards left.

  • The pilgrims planted the first United States apple trees in the Massachusetts Bay Colony.

  • Apples are a member of the rose family.

  • 25 percent of an apple's volume is air. That is why they float.

  • It takes the energy from 50 leaves to produce one apple.

  • Apples are the second most valuable fruit grown in the United States. Oranges are first.

  • China is the leading producer of apples with nearly 1.7 billion bushels grown annually; The U.S. is number 2.

  • Almost all apple juice/concentrate sold in stores comes from China.

  • Newton Pippin apples were the first apples exported from America in 1768, some were sent to Benjamin Franklin in London.

  • America's longest-lived apple tree was reportedly planted in 1647 by Peter Stuyvesant in his Manhattan orchard and was still bearing fruit when a derailed train struck it in 1866.

  • A bushel of apples will yield 12 to 15 quarts of applesauce.

  • It takes about 40 apples to create one gallon of apple cider.

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