Apples are actually a part of the rose, or Rosaceae family of plants. This includes many fruit plants such as pears, almonds, apricots, cherries, plums, raspberries, peaches and more.
Despite the fact that only the crab apple is native to North America, there are over 2,500 hundred different different types of apples grown in North America today.
Johnny Appleseed (real name John Chapman) was yes, a real person, and yes, he planted apple trees all over parts of the United States, but he wasn't poor, and he wasn't being nice. Back then, land could be claimed if you created a permanent homestead, and one of the ways to do that was to plant 50 trees to start an orchard. Chapman planted trees, and then later would sell "his" land to people.
Apples were brought over to the United States from Europe by colonists. But apples - again, aside from the inedible crab apple - aren't native to Europe either. Best guest is that they're native to Asia and were introduced to Europe by the Romans, though no one is truly sure.
Half the deciduous fruit tree production in the WORLD is apples, and they're mostly produced in five countries: the United States, China, Turkey, Italy, and Poland.
Photo Credits: Feature image: shutterstock, 25-24. pixabay (public domain), 23. wikimedia commons (public domain), 22. pixabay (public domain), 21. Steindy, Apfelernte Steiermark 01, CC BY-SA 3.0, 20. KM Foto via flickr, CC BY 2.0, 19. Rossssor, A can of Downeast Cider House’s Original Blend hard cider, CC BY-SA 3.0, 18. Mike Mozart via flickr, CC BY 2.0, 17. wikimedia commons (public domain), 16. pixabay (public domain), 15. National Cancer Institute via wikimedia commons (public domain), 14. http://wellcomeimages.org/indexplus/obf_images/2b/6e/54310e7ff1fdad920279cc6b052c.jpg, Adam and Eve under the Tree of life, woodcut 1547 Wellcome L0029215, CC BY 4.0, 13-12. pixabay (public domain), 11. www.publicdomainpictures.net (public domain), 10-1. pixabay (public domain)