The Apple Detective

The Apple Detective

The Apple Detective. I’m Greg Martin with today’s Fruit Grower Report.

Yesterday we talked with WSU’s Amit Dhingra about some lost apple varieties and how one interested person has been hot on the trail of some of those apples. David Benscoter is retired from law enforcement and has used some of that training to suss out clues.

BENSCOTER: I had written couple of articles one on old orchards in southern Spokane County. Then I wanted to do an article on George Rudy who was a nurseryman who lived in Colfax and had a nursery in Colfax and he actually had quite a fascinating history. He introduced two apples, one of which became very popular around the turn of the 1900’s.

Over time various apple varieties have just been forgotten as one generation passes to the next.

BENSCOTER: So I started pulling old Colfax Gazettes in the early 1900’s and ended up with a list of close to 140 different varieties that we’re growing in the county in the early 1900’s and then I compared that list with lists of apples that are known to be extinct or lost and I found that there were about eleven apples that no longer exist or at least no one knows their whereabouts.

He still has 10 varieties he’s looking for. If you have any information on old apple varieties or orchards, he’d love to hear from you. You can contact me at and I’ll pass on the information.

That’s today’s Fruit Grower Report. I’m Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network of the West.

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