In the second part of the 19th century fruit growing emerged on a commercial basis and De Beemster grew into an important fruit centre. Replacing the windmills with steam pumps made this possible – fruit trees do not thrive in a fluctuating water table. Then, especially in the south east corner, many fruit nurseries with tall tree orchards emerged. Only a few of them are left, their tall trees have been replaced by spindles. Tall fruit trees, now elderly, still stand in large numbers in the fruit gardens at the farms.