Master Gardener shares rare fruit source with Chron readers

Jan 25, 2010

A Master Gardener with UC Cooperative Extension in Santa Clara County, Laramie Treviño, turned San Francisco Chronicle readers on to a source of fast-producing, unusual fruit trees in a feature story printed over the weekend.

Treviño profiled C. Todd Kennedy and Patrick Schafer, rare fruit enthusiasts who run their online-only nursery as a "personal charity," the story said. Tree prices are $19.50, low considering they are already a good size and most will produce fruit within one year.

Kennedy and Schafer have constructed an unusual business model for

  • Two dozen varieties are offered each year, and then those types are unavailable for a few years thereafter
  • Only enough inventory is propagated to ensure that its stock sells out
  • The company has no catalogs, no printed growing tips, no listed fax or telephone numbers
  • Surplus fruit trees will be available at Filoli Garden Center when the estate reopens Feb. 9. Filoli is a historic country estate about 30 miles south of San Francisco that is open to the public.

By Jeannette E. Warnert
Author - Communications Specialist