Crab Apple


Welcome to our Botanical Diary, following along with the growing season at Frayed Knot Farm.

As new blooms come to life at this Northeast Ohio farmstead, we're sharing information and at-home styling inspiration for each plant.



Malus coronaria

Crab Apple Main

This applies to so many perennials, foliage, and seasonal items I grow, but ...

anything wild has my heart.

The fact that something that blooms so beautifully comes back again and again with no real maintenance is magical. The crab apple trees that bloom every year on the farm are a window to the past.

What those roots have seen!

-Em Pek, Frayed Knot Farms



"Crab apple" is used to describe wild apple trees. Crab refers to the mini apples, much smaller than what you'll typically find at a market or on a cultivated orchard. These trees belong to the rose family and are native to North America and Asia.



CULTURE IMAGE Henry David Thoreau, the celebrated 19th Century American Philosopher, wrote an article for the November 1862 edition of The Atlantic entitled "Wild Apples: The History of the Apple-Tree". The article is a history of the apple, followed, more interestingly, by Thoreau's own encounters with apple trees. He writes:

The flowers of the apple are perhaps the most beautiful of any tree's, so copious and so delicious to both sight and scent. The walker is frequently tempted to turn and linger near some more than usually handsome one, whose blossoms are two-thirds expanded.


Styling Notes

With sweet pale pinks and rich burgundy tones, this botanical is all about fullness. This clusters of small blooms feel whimsical and so very spring.

Crab apple bloom close

Long boughs add horizontal interest and look great on a mantle, where that length can really draw the eye across.
Don't be afraid to let those long branches take up space!

Long boughs add horizontal interest.



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Meet the Collaborators


Emily Pek is founder of Frayed Knot Farm and steward to the land it operates on. Thirty miles east of downtown Cleveland, Emily grows over 50 varieties of annual and perennial flowers, many of which are heirloom seeds on less than an acre. Using hand scale and regenerative farming practices, the farm has transformed from mowed grass and heavy clay soil to a thriving ecologically diverse ecosystem.



Jennie Doran is the designer and artist behind Room Service. Her passion for creating engaging, inspiring spaces, paired with her experience in retail design and art direction has situated R/S as one of Ohio’s preeminent retail destinations. With a keen eye for detail and composition, her work extends from large scale art installation to interiors, from costume design to art direction and styling.

Jennie & Em
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