Community rallies to help light fires, keep crops warm at Detroit cider mill

Detroit Farm & Cider owner asked friends to help save apple crops amid freezing weather

DETROIT – The owner of Detroit Farm & Cider on Lawrence Street was worried about her apple crops being affected by cold temperatures.

But several people came out Wednesday night to help Leandra King save her crops.

“It seemed like spring came early and our blossoms started popping out a little bit earlier,” King said. “At first it was 29 degrees and then yesterday we found out it’s going to 26 degrees. Twenty-eight degrees is the point where it could damage the blossoms.”

King reached out to her network of friends and came up with a plan to fight off the coming frost.

“We’re going to create bonfires throughout the orchard and we’re focusing on our apple trees because of the limited barrels we have access to,” she said. “It, in a sense, insulates the entire orchard.”

King needed supplies -- charcoal, wood, anything -- to keep the fires going until 6 a.m. Thursday, April 22.

When word spread about help needed, several people in the community rallied around the cider mill, including Eugene Rozen and his daughter Sasha.

“There was no thought. We knew we needed to jump into action. We knew we had to get all of the wood we had laying around and bring them over and save these blossoms,” Rozen said.

“My heart is full. I can’t say I didn’t expect it because I know my city. I did expect all of the love,” King said.

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