William Mills began planting apple orchards in Henderson County, shortly after the Revolutionary War. He was born November 10, 1746, while John Chapman, the famous â€œJohnny Appleseed,â€ was born in 1775. His apple orchards preceded Chapman's by thirty years. Today apple growing is a strong pillar in Henderson County's economy. About 65 percent of North Carolina's apple harvest is grown there. The state ranks seventh in the U.S. in apple production.