An orchard for Washington Park

Washington Park orchard site 2018-03-19

Soon to join the many trees of Albany's Washington Park: eight varieties of apple tree.

Nine Pin Cider and Samascott Orchards in Kinderhook will be planting a small apple orchard on a sunny slope above the lake near the spot where Thurlow Terrace meets the park.

"We have all these statues honoring things around the capital that are important to New York State," said Nine Pin founder Alejandro del Peral this week. "The idea is to put some sort of testament to New York's apple agricultural resource, which is world class."

Del Peral said the hope is that the orchard will also serve an educational role. And the varieties of tree -- selected by Samascott's Jake Samascott -- will highlight apples that are significant to New York's history of growing a wide range of apples. (The list is below.) A plaque with info about the state's apple growing industry will accompany the orchard.

"There will be some cool varieties there that people probably aren't familiar with," he said.

Mayor Kathy Sheehan's office confirmed that the city has been working with the cidery on the project. From a city hall statement: "Mayor Sheehan believes Nine Pin's Urban Orchard will be an important aesthetic and educational addition to Washington Park and the City of Albany, and is looking forward to the orchard planting on April 15." updated

Del Peral said Nine Pin is paying for the trees, and it's committed to maintaining the orchard, which could be expanded at some point. The hope is that the trees will bear a significant crop three years out -- in time to produce a small batch of cider for a celebration with the Washington Park Conservancy.

And, because the trees are growing in a public park, people will be free to pick them.

The planting for the orchard is planned for Sunday, April 15 at 10 am (weather permitting). The public is invited to participate, and attendees will get a voucher for a free cider at post-planting party at Nine Pin.

Washington Park orchard site pano 2018-03-19

Apple varieties for the orchard


Northern Spy (originated in Rochester in the 1840s)

Gold Rush - semi-dwarf tree

Gold Rush - dwarf tree

Golden Russet (another New York variety from the 1840s)

Jonathan (parent from Esopus Spitzenberg and it's in turn been a parent of many different varieties)

Roxbury Russet (thought to be many the first apple variety to originate in North America)

Esopus Spitzenburg (a famous old heirloom variety)

Otterson (this apple has red flesh)

Earlier: Growing a wider variety of flavors for cider

Nine Pin advertises on AOA.

Find It

Washington Park orchard (planned)
end of Thurlow Terrace
Albany, NY 12203


So much yes!


This is so cool!

Great idea! impressed that Nine Pin is (literally) planting roots in the City and including many heritage varieties.

When there is another Park-oriented event can we spread the love a little? can we be more expansive and think about the opportunities to bring more focus on Lincoln Park, instead of falling back on Washington Park ? How about a Lincoln Park Farmers' market or as a music venue for a concert?

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