Covered mainly with gorgeous plains and mountain ranges, Wyoming isn’t as famous as the country’s largest cities, but it’s still worth a visit. You just need to know what to do while you’re there.
Well, guess what? There are several amazing apple orchards in Wyoming. Knowing where they are and what they offer is your first step toward planning a memorable trip. We’ll tell you all about them!
History of Apple Orchards in Wyoming
Before European settlers arrived in North America, the only apple trees on the continent grew crabapples. As the United States expanded westward, European migrants and their descendants planted apple orchards with seeds from other species. By 1870, thousands of apples trees were growing in 29 cities throughout Wyoming.
Even after apple production slowed in the 1940s, apple orchards in Wyoming have continued to thrive. Throughout the state, you’ll find Lodi, Honeycrisp, Cortland, Zestar, SnowSweet, Haralred, McIntosh, Prairie Spy, Northern Greening, Duchess of Ohlenberg, State Fair, and other species.
Why Visit Wyoming Apple Orchards?
That’s all well and good, but why does this mean you should visit them? We’re glad you asked!
Apple orchards in Wyoming promise fresh air, beautiful surroundings, and reduced noise pollution. A visit to an apple orchard could be both relaxing and rejuvenating. You would go home with the energy to tackle your goals and to-do lists with the added bonus of bringing home delicious fruit freshly picked from the trees.
Also, consider how your interest affects demand. The more you visit apple orchards, the more you’ll prove that agriculture deserves economical support. Your patronage could help the environment flourish and reduce food insecurity throughout Wyoming. Maybe it will even inspire farmers to plant more orchards!
Best Wyoming Apple Orchards to Visit
Now that we’ve convinced you to check out the apple orchards in Wyoming, all you need to know is where to go. Although there are only a few apple orchards in Wyoming right now, each is unique and wonderful. Read our list below for details about them!
Pope Farm & Apple Orchard
While driving along Highway 26 in Lingle, Wyoming, you’ll find the Pope Farm & Apple Orchard, which has been family-owned and operated for over a century. Although the owners haven’t created a website for it yet, the orchard is among those that allow you to pick your own fruit, so you have control over the amount and quality of the apples you take. They’re all grown without artificial fertilizer, herbicides, or pesticides.
The farm is open to the public from 8:00 a.m. to sunset every day from August to October. However, the earlier you check it out, the easier it will be to get the best apples for yourself; the locals appreciate the quality so much that they start picking the apples as soon as harvest season begins. In fact, it’s so highly respected that the local Star Herald paper wrote an article about it!
Bring cash, as the owners will not accept cards or checks. There’s no restroom, either, so use your bathroom at home before visiting.
Young’s Apple Orchard
Also located in Lingle, Young’s Apple Orchard is another prominent family-owned and operated apple orchard in Wyoming. Boasting over 100 apple species growing on over 300 trees, the owners enjoy using social media to show how lovingly they care for each one. However, the public is welcome to assist with such tasks as trimming or pruning in case they want to bring home wood for cooking apple-smoked barbecue.
The owners regularly invite elementary schoolers on field trips to learn about their apple orchards, but they also enjoy teaching adults. For example, watch the YouTube video they created with the University of Wyoming to share some basic gardening information!
While apples are the focus, this stunning orchard also features plums, peaches, and pears. You’ll have no trouble finding fruit that you’ll love to take home!
Circle J Ranch
Ten Sleep, Wyoming
Sometimes, you just want to get away from the world for a while. There’s an apple orchard in Wyoming that will let you do just that, and it’s called the Circle J Ranch. Stretching across 200 majestic acres, this ranch features not only an apple orchard, but a creek, canyon, red rocks, lodging, and RV parking so that you can camp.
In the fall, the ranch throws a fabulous apple festival. You can play outdoor games, dance with your loved ones, paint pumpkins, buy unique crafts, bob for apples, and indulge in countless apple-inspired foods, including pie. The ranch will also host events like weddings and birthday parties the rest of the year.
If you like apple cider, apricots, plums, and pears, that’s all the more reason to visit the Circle J Ranch. They’ve got it all!
Field Station/Sinks Canyon Center
Are you a history buff as well as an apple lover? Consider going to the Sinks Canyon Center, formerly known as Field Station. Although apple trees became widespread in the state during the 1800s, Field Station was distinguished as one of the state’s first commercial apple orchards in Wyoming.
Its 127-acre facility was established in 1873 and served as a popular source of fresh local fruit until 1917, when it was donated to the University of Wyoming. The Central Wyoming College bought it from the university in the 1970s, but by then, it had been transformed into a testing ground for raising animals and growing various crops.
Together with the Wyoming Department of Agriculture’s Specialty Crops Program, the college is working to restore this Wyoming apple orchard to its former glory. You can support it by checking it out or even volunteering with planting and maintenance.
Benefits of Apple Orchards
Wherever you go in the United States, you’ll likely find apple orchards. They have continued thriving everywhere for almost two centuries, and the apple orchards in Wyoming are no exception. That’s because their benefits have become increasingly clear and indispensable. We’ll list them here!
One of the primary reasons why settlers planted apple orchards in the first place was simply to have more food available. Apples can be harvested annually, and there’s usually more than enough to go around. There’s little reason to worry about food insecurity with apple orchards.
Great to Eat
Apples have long been prized for their sweet, refreshing taste and variety of nutrients, especially vitamin C, fiber, collagen, and antioxidants. They strengthen your brain, skin, heart, lungs, bones, and immune system, so you’ll be less prone to diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure, strokes, mental illnesses and common everyday sicknesses. Eating them even makes weight loss easier.
Has your dentist ever reminded you to floss? Apples are nicknamed “nature’s toothbrush” because the fiber cleans out the spaces between your teeth while the chewiness stimulates saliva flow. Between your saliva and the fruit’s high water content, you’ll wash away the harmful bacteria that cause cavities.
Good for Business
Since the vast majority of Americans love apples, growing them is often a safe business venture for farmers. People everywhere make apples a regular part of their diet, so growers always have customers to justify their labor and expenses. That’s partially why there are several excellent apple orchards in Wyoming.
Like other trees, apple trees are known for cleaning the air and regulating outdoor temperature. The Arbor Day Foundation estimates that one mature tree can absorb more than 48 pounds of carbon dioxide, which can then be turned into oxygen. Imagine the good that an entire apple orchard can do.
Besides the fact that buying local produce creates a robust local economy, apple orchards provide a safe and pleasant place for both casual and formal gatherings. With their shade, atmosphere, and readily accessible food, apple orchards in Wyoming promote community togetherness throughout the state.
Provides Educational Opportunities
Students from elementary school to college need to understand how food growth and distribution works. Even if they’re not going to become farmers, such basic knowledge helps them become responsible and informed citizens. Apple orchards assist with that by being open to field trips and school projects.
Many people find trees and apples so aesthetically pleasing that they are frequently represented in art and music. The magnificence of an apple orchard could do wonders for clearing your mind and increasing your appreciation for the world around you.
Enjoy Visiting Wyoming Apple Orchards!
Considering the variety of benefits and activities, you can’t go wrong with visiting one of — or all — the apple orchards in Wyoming.
Excited for more apple content? Visit my apple trees page to learn more about apple planting, growing, harvesting, cooking, and more!