David Fried started Elmore Roots after living on fruits and berries on the long trail as he hiked his way into Vermont up from the Massachussets border and headed north in August 1979. He figured that if he ever had his own place, he would surround himself with the best fruit trees and berry plants he could find and share the fruit with all his friends.
Gaia and David - Gaia is the 2nd generation of Elmore Roots leadership
In 1981 he was invited to live on the land in Elmore where he planted new orchards and began the nursery. It has expanded into neighboring fields over the years. Back then, when David approached the local extension agent to see what he could grow here, he was told not to try any fruit other than a few very hardy apples, as they surely would not grow. Being a bit stubborn and having the experience of crossing the Sahara Desert and jumping in and out of freight trains in his travels, he decided he would see for himself what could really grow here. The result is over 40 years of pioneer work in northern Vermont with various fruit trees, nut trees and berry plants.
David Fried with longtime friend and mentor Bill Mackentley
Having excellent mentors and working over the years with great dedicated young budding horticulturists, this old hillside dairy farm is now a thriving nursery and food forest. We have been growing northern kiwiberries, hazelberts, many kinds of plums and pears and cherries with great success. we make grape juice from our grapes, jam from our berries, and supply beer companies with our plums and pears.
Superhardy forsythia at Elmore Roots
Most of all, we share what we have found to be the hardiest and easiest to grow fruits and nuts and berries, so that you will be able to have the best chances of having your own home harvests as soon as you starting planting our trees and hardy plants.
One of our great crews. From left to right, Noelle, Gaia, Tristan, Ari in the tree, David, Anika, and Eric.
David has loved being around fruit trees ever since growing up with crabapple trees in his backyard and seeing his father prune them and tasting the pies his mom baked from them. His mother's father also grew fruit trees, grapes, lilacs, and hydrangeas in the backyard of his home which was also his dentist office. Now David's two daughters have been working at the nursery and Gaia, the oldest is now customer service manager. Growing fruit trees and flowering shrubs is now part of this family story; David has loved being around fruit trees for four generations.
Paintings by Gabriel Tempesta, Drawings by Gaia Fried & Heidi Meyer-Bothling.
Photos by David Fried, J Kennedy, and Jeff Farber, almost all taken at Elmore Roots Nursery, LLC.