When the Blisses purchased Dumbarton Oaks, an orchard of fruit trees, including seven apples, a peach, and a cherry, already existed on this hillside. In the new orchard, Farrand planted rows of apples chosen for the quality of their fruit, interspersed with crabapples chosen for their spring bloom and fruit. At some point in the past, most of the apples were replaced by crabapples, perhaps to discourage children from climbing to pick the fruit.
Farrand designed several vantage points to view the orchard from above: the north balcony of the Rose Garden, the northern side of the Arbor Terrace, and the wooden arbor seat, topped with a wooden ball cap and flag, on the walkway above. Then, as now, the Sophora japonica planted on the hill between the Box Walk and the Orchard is an important part of the orchard's composition.