Picture Sundays: Uncle Sam Calls For Fruit Plantings On Every Farm & Suburban Homestead

At a lecture at last week’s National Heirloom Exposition, Gary Nabhan passed around this in-house newspaper directed at the sales force working for Stark Brothers Nursery in 1946.

To assist the Government’s new Home FRUIT PLANTING campaign, Stark Bro’s have been conducting a huge Direct-Mail drive to create interest in this important subject. Inquiries from the huge Direct-Mail Campaign are referred to YOU as soon as you start selling Stark Nursery Stock. As a result, aggressive salesmen and women are finding doors open to them everywhere.

Imagine that world of Government fruit tree planting programs and aggressive door to door nursery stock salespeople. Somehow I doubt the decline of apple tree plantings will come up as a topic in this year’s presidential campaign. If it did we’d be talking about something important for a change.

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  1. That kind of campaign would certainly create more jobs than the current campaigns! Did the census back then ask questions about fruit trees in the yard? I never knew the govt was involved in fruit tree campaigns. Now, I can get fir and other non-deciduous trees free through the state.

    I have a friend who lives in a $700K house. At AL prices, that is quite a nice home. It may list for more than that. He has a huge lawn with few trees, lots of shrubs around the house and nothing but grass other than a strange little elevated, triangular section where his neighbor grew vegetables for both of them.

    He is unemployed IT person, living on Army retirement, with house and car paid for. He just refuses to buy food, preferring free food. I suggested he plant fruit and nut trees. He declared fruit trees were too messy–looks bad. NO way!

    This man is physically fit and bikes 50 miles a day, so he is not incapable of handling the mess of a fruit tree. I taught him to can. His 90-yr-old mother gave him all her canning equipment. He has two chest freezers full of food. I also taught him how to freeze fruits and vegetables. There should be little mess if he were on top of the food preservation.

    His only excuse for not having fruit trees is the mess! Where along the way did having such a neat yard come into play?

    I live in an Historic District and know of no fruit trees here. There are half a dozen pecan trees and fig trees that the squirrels eat from. It seems this old neighborhood should have some remnants of fruit trees. When did the aversion to messy fruit trees become a problem? Are HOAs to blame? Social status? Did they go the way of chickens in the backyard? Sorry this was so long.

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