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Orchard news and some local apple days


It's harvest time in the orchard. There's quite a reasonable crop, although some of the fruit are rather small. The medlar and quince have also cropped well. Nick Marks installed a fine looking arch to the village green this year. Grass cutting is behind schedule but should be completed shortly. You are welcome to help yourself to fruit.

Now is a good time for a working party to clear around the trees, which are looking rather untidy. Would you be able to help out one Sunday afternoon towards the end of October?

It's 25 years since the first Apple Day was launched by Common Ground to celebrate the glorious diversity of English Apples. There are many opportunities to enjoy a variety of apple themed events locally and some of them are detailed below. Dunsden Community Orchard held its own apple day a few years ago. Perhaps it's time we organised another?

Reading, tel: 0118 378 8660

11-13 October, Apple Weekend, free tours of the orchards and fruit sheds at 11.30am, 2pm and 3.30pm and taste numerous different apple and juice varieties. If you’re thinking of growing your own apple trees, this is a great chance to try before you buy. Advice and information will be available too, along with the chance to get your mystery crop identified. , near Wheatley, tel: 01844 339226

17-18 October, Apple Days, 57 varieties to try! Hughenden Manor, near High Wycombe, tel: 01494 755573

17 October, Apple Day, Home Cottage Farm, Iver Heath, tel: 01753 653064

18 October  Apple Day,  11-3 Thatcham community Orchard. A joint event with Thatcham Town Council and BBOWT. There will something for everyone, with lots of stalls, activities and entertainment. Attractions include traditional crafts, Morris dancers, birds of prey, music, food, cider, plus of course information and advice on growing fruit trees, as well lots of local community stalls. Apple  display of 100 different apples so bring your apples along and try and work out what they are!!  Free entry.
The Nature Discovery Centre, 
 RG19 3FU

An interesting article by James Wong in the Guardian recently highlights the fact that it's not just any apple a day that is good for you, it has to be the right variety. Golden Delicious apples actually made people less healthy, in contrast with some new red-fleshed varieties being developed which have five or more times the amount of anti-oxidants and other beneficial ingredients than conventional apples.

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