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We Are Happy to be Farming
King Orchards is a family owned and operated fruit farm in the heart of Michigan's cherry-growing region, actively growing over 100 acres of tart cherries.
We are a first generation family farm. John and Betsy along with Jim and Rose King and the children make up the family.
At one time the majority of Americans grew up on family farms. The number of farms and farmers has been steadily declining since the 1940's, and fewer and fewer people have known the farming life. We are an exception to this trend, being first-generation farmers who had a dream of owning our own farm and have been able to make that dream a reality.
We grow 134 and a half acres of Montmorency tart cherries; 19 acres of Balaton cherries (a new tart cherry variety from Hungary), 32 acres of sweet black cherries; 95 acres of apples, including 20 acres of staked high-density plantings; 10 acres of peaches; 3 acres of pears; 2 acres of apricots; 12 acres of sweet corn; and 2 acres of garden vegetables (if we can keep Rose reigned in). We love the farming life and work hard to grow quality fruit.
Cherry Country is Beautiful
The orchard is situated on the highest ground in Antrim County. Looking west we can see Torch Lake, about 3 miles away, and Grand Traverse Bay and the Leelanau peninsula beyond that. The rolling hills and ridges here were formed by the glaciers and are called drumlins. They help to allow good cold air drainage, which is important to prevent frost damage. Our proximity to Lake Michigan's Grand Traverse Bay keeps the temperatures moderated in the spring and fall. Many people feel that the best fruit in the world is grown here in northwestern Michigan.
It's a Family Operation
We were fortunate to have a lot of help from family and friends when we started. John's brother Jim helped out the first two years, and later bought his own 60 acre farm nearby. The early years were hard, but as John says, we didn't have enough experience to know we should be worried. We have always been willing to do whatever it takes to make a go at farming.
From Our Trees to Your table
When you buy from us you benefit from a strong commitment that goes far beyond a pleasant voice on the telephone or a slick four-color catalog. As growers we are stewards of the land and active in our rural community. Our investment begins long before a label is put on a product or an order is processed. We are tart cherry growers with over 100 acres of Montmorency trees, and a lifetime of experience and dedication to the future of tart cherries.
When we say "scientific farming" we mean agriculture that is based on measurable, objective results, tested and reviewed by a wide variety of qualified and dedicated individuals and institutions.
When you are vacationing up north, be sure to stop by the fruitstand and say hi!