The end of October is in sight – and that means the end of the Apple Day season. We’ve been to so many this year, and over such a long period, that they’re more of an Apple Daze than Apple Days.
We started at the Glasu apple event in Brecon and have since taken in events in Herefordshire, Gloucestershire and Dorset, missing (much to my embarrassment) the Apple Fest at Tenbury, Worcestershire (though I did spend some of that day in a mistletoe-filled apple orchard)
At Much Marcle’s Big Apple events, 2 weeks ago, I gave one of my mistletoe miscellany talks, after spending time wandering round local orchards, and sampling James Gregg’s cider. Not my best performance – as the digital projector remote stopped working, really b*gg**ing up my timing, but it seemed to go down fairly well nevertheless.
Today I think it’s probably all over for the season, as we’ve just returned from the Apple Day at the Kingcombe Centre in Dorset, set in the midst of hundreds of acres of Dorset Wildlife Trust grassland reserve. A relaxed day, with Caroline and I just visiting – no duties today. The centre, run independently of the DWT reserve, is a field centre running a variety of courses, and serving fabulous food from local sources. For Apple Day we had just had to sample the apple and parsnip soup, apple ploughman’s lunches, apple cake, apple flapjacks, apple muffins – you get the idea.
There was thick local ham served with the ploughmans – and whilst eating it we had appropriate views of Baldrick, an elderly large white boar in the kitchen garden. And I had a long chat later with his friend Peggy, a saddleback sow. I found she has a weakness for cider apples, and, as a result, is now my friend for life.
Mistletoe is virtually unknown in this part of Dorset and they have none in the small orchard adjoining the centre – maybe I’ll come back in planting season next February…