The Kavanagh Apple Tree

Today’s Maine Sunday Telegram tells the story of a rare Kavanagh apple tree in Freeport.

For us, it started when Rowan Jacobsen, author of the recently published book “Apples of Uncommon Character,” mentioned offhandedly a specific Kavanagh apple tree in an interview last month with the Press Herald. He thought it might be the rarest apple he’d encountered, and described it as growing “basically in a parking lot near L.L. Bean in Maine.” His final word, “I think that’s the only mature Kavanagh still in existence,” was catnip to Source editor Peggy Grodinsky. She sent me to find the tree, warning me we might need to shield its exact location to protect the tree’s future and asking me to tell, as best I could, its past.

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