Steppe Magazine has an article about apple forests in Tian Shan, believed to be the source of all worldwide apple varieties.
Nowhere else in the world do apples grow as a forest. The nineteenth-century traveller Victor Vitkovich proclaimed these naturally occurring groves to be ‘a marvellous garden where apples and pears look down on you from the trees and beg to be eaten’.
This Garden of Eden is under threat from the introduction of commercial varieties of apple. Yet another reason to plant apple trees in the UK, especially if they come from a wide variety of species.