Jennifer Casey, Biodiversity Leader
Slow Food Wisconsin Southeast 


Reserve your tree now for planting in late Spring. To ensure availability in the Spring, orders need to be placed by March 1st.
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Maple Valley Orchards will supply custom bench graft trees.  Slow Food WiSE will supply soil, protection, and care instructions. Pick up date and location TBD.

Event will be in late Spring and will feature apple education and celebration.



Milwaukee Apples

Adopt Your Own Milwaukee Apple

Join Slow Food WiSE and the handful of orchardists, chefs, and food activists who are bringing antique apples back to our tables by "adopting" your own Milwaukee Apple, or one of seven additional delicious varietals, for your backyard or community space.
There are only five known Milwaukee apple trees in Milwaukee County. One located in the Urban Ecology Center's Washington Park fruit orchard, was planted by Slow Food WiSE along with a group of youth and volunteers in 2011.  The other four Milwaukee varietal trees were planted in the Spring of 2010 by Slow Food WiSE volunteers at the Historic Stahl Conrad Homestead in Hale's Corners, along with Pewaukee and Oneida Apple varieties.
Because the Milwaukee Apple is just one of hundreds of thousands of endangered or extinct apples that have disappeared from our plates, and we are promoting place based biodiversity, we are also adopting additional rare varietals with roots in Wisconsin.
The details:
Slow Food Wise is offering bench grafted apple trees from Maple Valley Orchards (the only known source for Milwaukee Apple tree scion wood.)  Choose from Milwaukee, Pewaukee, Oneida, Bonnie Best, Wolf River, Connel Red, Northwestern Greening, & Utter. ** See varietal information below.

  • $25 per tree.  Custom bench graft trees ordered from Maple Valley will be planted in a gallon size pot upon arrival, and tended until we can get them to you with care instructions along with protective barrier.
  • Pick up date and location TBD.  Event will be in late spring (dependent on when they arrive) and will feature apple education and celebration.
  • Things to consider when buying an apple tree:
    • Bench grafted trees are tiny and require patience; they may take ~ 5 years to produce fruit.
    • Because they need to be protected, each apple tree you order will come in soil with their root protected, along with a pest barrier and care instructions. 
    • Apple trees are not self pollinating-if you do not have another apple tree in your neighborhood nearby, we encourage you to purchase at least two trees of different varieties.
    • Apples can survive in a variety of conditions, but they do need sun, space, good soil that drains, and someone to promise to tend to them throughout the years.
    • These trees will grow to about ~10 feet.


  • Milwaukee: This seedling apple varietal was found under a Duchess tree and then developed by George Jeffrey of Milwaukee, WI.  It appeared in commerce around 1899.  It's tough but thin skin is greenish yellow and marbled, blushed with reds. Its yellowish white flesh is tender and with a pleasant tart, green apple flavor.  The Milwaukee Apple is wonderful in pies, in cider, and good for most uses except as a fresh eating apple, unless sliced paper thin and paired with a Wisconsin cheese. * Ripens: Oct
  •  Pewaukee: Origin: Wisconsin 1870 * Ripens: Oct * Medium/large apple with firm white flesh, coarse and juicy. Good fresh eating and cooking. Keeps well.
  • Oneida: Origin: Uncertain.*  Sweet, delicious flesh, tender yellow skin, good for eating fresh and drying.  Tony of Maple Valley reports that he was given the Oneida Variety by a friend and member of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin who said it has historically been used by tribal members for drying.
  • Bonnie Best: Origin: Cooksville, Wisconsin * Ripens: Oct * An excellent apple for pies, canning, and fresh use. Fruits are large with attractive pale red striping. Flesh is creamy color, crunchy, tender, juicy and slightly tart. Keeps well in storage.
  • Wolf River:  Origin: Fremont, Wisconsin prior to 1881 * Ripens: Sept/Oct * Uses: Baking, Pies, Sauce * Enormous fruits, often 1 lb. or more, famous for one pie from one fruit. Pale yellow skin almost covered with pale dull red. Soft, tender, creamy white flesh. Mostly used for baking and pies, but in the right climate on sandy soil it becomes a good dessert apple. Resistant to scab, mildew, fire blight and cedar apple rust.  Large apple suitable for cooking and drying.
  • Connell Red: Origin: Dunn County, Wisconsin * Ripens: Oct * It is red sport of Fireside which itself is a cross of McIntosh and Longfield. It is a large round apple with a solid red color and a sweet perfumed fragrance reminiscent of its parent McIntosh. An excellent fresh eating and cooking apple and a superb keeper, holding well into April.
  • Northwestern Greening:  Origin: Waupaca, Wisconsin 1872 * Ripens: Oct * Uses: Baking, Pies, Sauce. * The big yellow pie apple of the north. It is the most popular non-red apple grown in the North Central States. Beneath its tough skin the greenish yellow flesh is firm, juicy and mildly tart. Best when cooked into sauce or made into pies as it does not rate high for fresh eating. The most popular non-red apple grown in the North Central states; tough yellowish skin with greenish yellow flesh that is firm, juicy, and mildly tart; primarily cooked into sauces and pies; a good keeper.
  • Utter  Wisconsin - 1855 * Ripens: August * Uses: Pies, Sauce * Yellow skinned apple with a very pleasant flavor. Does not keep well (unless preserved.)