10/16/2012 06:01 pm ET Updated Dec 16, 2012

Picking Apples for 100 Years!

Apple-picking is a fall tradition that holds years of memories for friends and families -- especially for the Leidel family! Leidel's Apples is a family run apple stand that been operating for more than 100 years in La Crescent, the apple capital of Minnesota. The apple stand has been in the family for six generations and continues to stay a family business ready to serve the community.

"I am the fourth generation of Leidel's who have been growing apples in La Crescent, Minnesota for almost 100 years!," says Mitchell Leidel. "I graduated from the University of Minnesota early so I could come back to take over the family business that was in jeopardy of closing for good after almost a century of operation. The goal is not only see the business continue but also to expand and grow. With the help of friends, family, the community, and the Lord it seems very likely there is a future!"

Want to know more about apples? Here are some fun apple facts provided by the University of Illinois Extension:

Apple Facts
• The crabapple is the only apple native to North America.
• Two pounds of apples make one 9-inch pie.
• Apple blossom is the state flower of Michigan.
• 2,500 varieties of apples are grown in the United States.
• 7,500 varieties of apples are grown throughout the world.
• Apples are grown in all 50 states.
• Apples are fat, sodium, and cholesterol free.
• A medium apple is about 80 calories.
• The science of apple growing is called pomology.
• Apple trees take four to five years to produce their first fruit.
• Most apples are still picked by hand in the fall.
• Apple varieties range in size from a little larger than a cherry to as large as a grapefruit.
• The apple tree originated in an area between the Caspian and the Black Sea.
• Apples are a member of the rose family.
• Apples harvested from an average tree can fill 20 boxes that weigh 42 pounds each.
• The largest apple picked weighed three pounds.
• The average size of a United States orchard is 50 acres.
• Some apple trees will grow over 40 feet high and live over 100 years.
• It takes the energy from 50 leaves to produce one apple.
• Apples are the second most valuable fruit grown in the United States. Oranges are first.
• In colonial time, apples were called winter banana or melt-in-the-mouth.
• A peck of apples weighs 10.5 pounds.
• A bushel of apples weighs about 42 pounds and will yield 20-24 quarts of applesauce.
• Archeologists have found evidence that humans have been enjoying apples since at least 6500 B.C.
• The world's largest apple peel was created by Kathy Wafler Madison on October 16, 1976, in Rochester, NY. It was 172 feet, 4 inches long. (She was 16 years old at the time and grew up to be a sales manager for an apple tree nursery.)

For more information about Leidel's apples, visit their website. Don't forget to share your favorite fall traditions at!