The humble crabapple

“What plant we in this apple tree? Sweets for a hundred flowery springs To load the May-wind’s restless wings, When, from the orchard-row, he pours Its fragrance through our open doors; A world of blossoms for the bee, Flowers for the sick girl’s silent room, For the glad infant sprigs of bloom, We plant with the apple tree.”
– William Cullen Bryant




(Images of the massive crabapple in the back pasture / Julie Cook / 2014)

This year is no exception.
We smelled the heavenly scent long before we noticed that the tree’s buds had actually opened.
As we busied ourselves in the yard Sunday afternoon, we all turned to one another at the same time stating the same marked observation “something sure does smell good”. . .

Immediately we realized that the massive overgrown crabapple had begun to bloom.
This massive tree sits just over the fence which divides our property from our neighbors.
This section of fenced off land had actually served, many moons ago, as a small pasture for a mere grouping of 8 black Angus cows. Deciding that her investment was not as profitable as first imagined, our neighbor sold the cows, allowing this small section of land to be reclaimed by Mother Nature herself as it is now an overgrown jungle of brambles, small pines, weeds and grasses.

This jumble of land is also home to several lovely trees. Dogwoods, Sweetgums, as well as several massive crabapples which at first glance resemble massive bushes rather than stately trees—with the one pictured today, growing well over the barbed wire fence, flowing and pouring itself onto our side of the fence.

This tree is home to the small family of deer which call our area home. The tree provides wonderful protective cover for mothers and fawns, as well as shelter from the heat of the oppressive Georgia summers. For us, the tree is a powerful reminder for all who are fortunate enough to first smell, then view, it’s heavenly presence, that the cycle of life is once again beginning. Always as if right on cue, happily again we are all reminded that Spring is indeed a time of renewed hope and joy. The comfort of the expected routine of life, which is happily observed from the cycle of the humble crabapple tree, reassures any observer that despite the woeful headlines which greet us each morning on the news, life is still happily hard at work.

He has made everything beautiful in its time

Ecclesiastes 3:11

7 comments on “The humble crabapple

  1. Beautiful pictures Julie, especially the bumble bee! Great shot! 🙂

  2. Yes, life is happily still hard at work! I could almost smell the scent from here. I’m sure it was heavenly from up close. Love the tale and the photos! Hugs, N 🙂

  3. Chris N says:

    Hey! I’m interested in some wild crabapples you photographed. I found them via google and they look just like ones I used to eat growing up! I’m not sure if this will give you my email, but I would very much appreciate finding out more about them.
    -Thank you, Chris

    • Hi Chris— those are wild crabapples— you might need to talk with a nursery about plating and growing a cultivated crabapple trees— these wild trees also remind me of the ones I ate at my grandparents farm when I was a kid

      • Chris N says:

        Thank you for your speedy reply Julie! I am aware they are wild and have contacted many nurseries in search of these. My issue is finding that particular strain of crabapple that our family has been eating for generations! I have tried many so far and none are the same as when we (my brother and I) were growing up :'(.

        I’d honestly like to talk more on a private platform. We are very motivated to find the exact ones that we grew up eating so that we can have a couple of trees on our property. Our great grandfather introduced them to the family, but the last tree that any of us had (or knew of) was lost years ago.

        Any additional information would be very much appreciated! Here ( is my facebook link. I’m not comfortable sharing much else contact information wise via these public comments.

        Thank you again!

      • Hey Chris— I am not a Facebook person but I can tell you that these are wild crabapples that are growing wild on a piece of property in Troup County Georgia—it’s about 300 acres my husband has leased to hunt deer and turkey for the past 30 years — I’m sure at some point, 100 plus years ago, there were home places on the land as it was most likely a farming area— the land is outside the city of Lagrange by about 10 minutes if that far — I know that’s not much help

      • Chris N says:


        That’s incredibly helpful! It’s more of a lead than I’ve had in awhile. Thank you! I’ll post back with results if anything comes of it.


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