Rendleman Orchards What's New at Rendleman Orchards The History of Rendleman Orchards, Alto Pass, Illinois At Rendleman Orchards, we raise many varieties of peaches including Bellaire, Loring, Cresthaven and Fayette Rendleman Orchards raises Sunglo, Redgold and Summer Beaut nectarines Rendleman Orchards raises Gala, Jonathon, Red Delicious, Golden Delicious and Fuji apples Have a question or comment?  Want to be on our mailing list?  Send us a note at Rendleman Orchards Home Page - Rendleman Orchards, Alto Pass, Illinois Rendleman Orchards
Rendleman Orchards Rendleman Orchards
Rendleman Orchards
Growers & Shippers of Quality Fruit Since 1873
 
Rendleman Orchard's Farm Market
Calendar of Events at Rendleman Orchards
The History of Rendleman Orchards, Alto Pass, Illinois
At Rendleman Orchards, we raise many varieties of peaches including Bellaire, Loring, Cresthaven and Fayette
Rendleman Orchards raises Sunglo, Redgold and Summer Beaut nectarines
Rendleman Orchards raises Gala, Jonathon, Red Delicious, Golden Delicious and Fuji apples
Try some of our favorite recipies at Rendleman Orchards
Hours of operation at Rendleman Orchards
Directions to Rendleman Orchards located on the Shawnee Hills Orchard Trail
Area Attractions
Some of our most Frequently Asked Questions
Have a question or comment?  Want to be on our mailing list?  Send us a note at Rendleman Orchards
 
Home Page - Rendleman Orchards, Alto Pass, Illinois
 
History of Rendleman Orchards
 
Rendleman Orchards began in 1873 when John and Isabelle Rendleman bought and established the original 88 acre family farm raising chickens, cows and corn for livestock. In this past century, the small family farm has grown and developed into our present day modern agricultural enterprise while maintaining its identity as a family farm.

With each subsequent generation, the farm grew and evolved. John and Isabelle's youngest son Grover, and his wife Iva, assumed the farm in 1906, raising asparagus, rhubarb, sweet potatoes and corn for his truck farming operation. Grover also began to develop a fruit farming business with the strong influence of his wife's family who were prominent area fruit growers of the day.


Union County was known for being the largest peach producing area in the state of Illinois. Peach orchards could be seen on at least one side of the road all the way from Bald Knob to Anna, Illinois, a distance of 18 miles. As Grover's children grew, he and his son, James (Jimmy), formed Grover Rendleman and Son, and by the late 1930's had expanded the original farm to include 540 acres. Despite the fact that many local fruit growers came to discontinue growing peaches all together, Grover Rendleman and Son continued operating as they had for the previous twenty years with peaches as their mainstay and summer apples as merely a supportive crop.

A load of peaches heading to market
The year 1946 saw the premature death of Wayne P. Sirles, Grover's son in law. Consequently, Grover's daughter, Helen, moved back home to the farm with her children, one of whom was 5 year old Wayne Rendleman "Ren" Sirles, the current president of Rendleman Orchards. Ren grew up showing an
Three generations of Rendlemans interest in the family business, working full days during harvest when he was 10 years old. This interest led him back to the farm after college to work alongside his grandfather and uncle. Ren and his wife, Betty, had two children as the 1960's ushered in a plethora of advancements for the farm. The old fashioned Elberta peaches, once the standard, were phased out as newer varieties with more flavor and better color were developed. New apple varieties were also planted in anticipation of the future market demands, and a new apple grader was implemented to pack those fall apples with more accuracy and ease.

The farm's first cold storage facility was added and the farm began hydro cooling the peaches as they came in from the fields. The harvest was then handled by large bulk bins and forklifts rather than by simply manpower.

When Grover died in 1968, Grover Rendleman and Son had become one of the largest peach growers in the state with 540 acres comprising the farm. Within a few years, Jimmy and Ren formed their own partnership; Helen retired from teaching school and assumed many of the daily secretarial responsibilities as well as all of the payroll and much of the bookkeeping; and Betty entered the business as a full-time crew boss during the harvest months. The farm was still a true family enterprise.

With Jimmy's death in 1979, Ren took over the operation himself and Grover Rendleman and Son became Rendleman Orchards, Inc. These last three plus decades have seen the farm grow to approximately 800 acres, add early vegetable crops and implement an Integrated Pest Management System. Ren and Betty's son, Wayne, returned to the farm with his wife Michelle. They are the sixth generation of Rendlemans to work this farm with their daughters, Hilary and Audrey.
 
 
Rendleman Orchards, Inc.
9680 State Highway 127 N
    P.O. Box 159    Alto Pass, IL 62905    (618) 893-2771
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