Rachel and Alfred Nichols started a U-Pick Apple Orchard in 1969 with their two children, Al, Jr. and Lisa, on the 10 acres they bought 2 miles from Route 11 in Troutville, VA which included around 300 young apple trees. A home was built that year and more trees were planted year after year along with more adjourning property. Operating out of their basement in the beginning, then a small garage building which led to a big red barn shaped building built on the property in 1986. The orchard is still run by the same family today.Apple Barn opened in May 1987 upstairs in the big red barn at Apple Barn/Nichols Orchard with crafts and silk flower arrangements. These were replaced after a few years with top of the line collectibles and gift items. Seeking more visibility and space, in l997 the Nichols bought a lot on Route 11 in the town of Troutville and had a big red barn built to keep the image they established and named it Apple Barn II.Apple Barn Gallery, specializing in the art of P. Buckley Moss, was opened in Buchanan, VA in 1995. Cackleberry Ridge, is another gift shop built and operated by Alfred Nichols which features Amish made furniture and has been located on Stoney Battery Road in Troutville since 1997.