Fruit Tree Nursery

Saunders Brothers has been involved in the fruit tree industry for over 100 years. We know from experience, starting with a quality tree will yield the quickest turnaround time to fruiting. Since we started our fruit tree nursery in 2015, we have been able to consistently grow apples trees that fit today's orchard establishment needs.

All of our apple trees are propagated using the one-year benchgraft method. In this method, it allows our customers to wait much longer to make their variety decision on their custom order. We’re grafting in February and digging the following February, twelve months later. On the “Sunny Side” of the Blue Ridge Mountains here in Central VA, with our long growing season and heat units in the summer time we have been able to grow quality trees, year after year. We understand the importance of starting with a high-quality tree from first-hand experience and knowledge in transplanting these trees from the nursery to the new orchard site.


Commonly Grown Variety Offerings


  • Early season, yellow apple. Good for cooking.

MAIA-SM (Sweet Maia®) USPP# 34,437

  • Early season cross between Honeycrisp x Winesap. A great eye appeal with bright red coloring. Crispy and sweet. Smaller sized fruit that is great for a summer snack!

BL-14 Gala USPP# 27,867

  • New, high color striped Gala with uniform fruit.

Gala (Simmons Cltv.)

  • Red striped Gala sport.


  • Crisp, juicy favorite of apple lovers. Low vigor growth habit amongst a tendency for bitter pit must be considered when selecting the rootstock.

Royal Red Honeycrisp® USPP# 22,244

  • High colored red strain of Honeycrisp.

MAIA 12 (Summerset®) USPP# 29,213

  • Honeycrisp x Fuji cross. Ripens with Honeycrisp. Similar flavor profile as Honeycrisp with more tang.

JonaStar® USPP# 20,590

  • Fully colored Jonagold sport with same great flavor as standard Jonagold


  • Found as a chance seedling in a British Columbia. Fruit has a creamy yellow background with a pink blush. Crisp and sweet.

Golden Delicious (Gibson Cltv.)

  • One of the most popular Golden Delicious strains grown. Known for it’s smooth skin that is less prone to russeting. Grower friendly.

MAIA 11 (Rosalee®) USPP# 29,146

  • Honeycrisp x Fuji cross. First picking about 10 days after Golden Delicious. Clean, floral taste with desirable texture.

MAIA Z (Sweet Zinger®) USPP# 30,059

  • Goldrush x Sweet 16 cross. The name is appropriate with a zing at the end of a bite! Ripens two weeks after Golden Delicious.

MAIA L (Ludacrisp®) USPP# 30,472

  • Open pollinated Honeycrisp that ripens three weeks after Golden Delicious. Sweet, tropical flavor that some say relates to Juicy Fruit gum.

Pink Lady® (Barnsby Cltv.) USPP# 21,606

  • A limb sport of ‘Cripps Pink’ that ripens three weeks earlier. Comparable fruit characteristics.

Taylor Spur Rome

  • Processing favorite as a heavy producer and reliable to set fruit with a late bloom.

MAIA 1 (Evercrisp®) USPP# 24,579

  • Fuji x Honeycrisp cross. Appearance is similar to Fuji. A dense and sweet fruit with crispy texture. Excellent storability.


  • Fruit is sweet and juicy with a dull white flesh. Trees have vigorous growth habits and are prone to biennial growth habits if not managed properly.

Granny Smith

  • Green and tart apple. Although it can be used for fresh or processing sales, very well known for cooking capabilities.


  • A late maturing scab resistant variety. Yellow with a red blush at harvest. Good storage capabilities and a favorite amongst cider producers.

Pink Lady® (Ruby Pink Cltv.) USPP# 16,725

  • High colored sport of ‘Cripps Pink’. One of the last apples to harvest for the season.


Please click on our video link below to see our Spring 2021 crop and learn more about the trees we have to offer!

Contact Marshall Saunders for more information. 


The digging process.

Some beautiful 'Simmons' Gala on M.9-337.

Here, Marshall stands with some one year old

MAIA 1 (Evercrisp) USPP# 24,579 on Geneva® 11 rootstock.