Apple Season is Here! - Blog Post

    Apple Season is here and what a busy time it is! The Tamar Valley is famed for it’s enormous variety of local cider, cookers and eating apples with wonderful names such as Pigs Snout, Lady’s Fingers, Colloggett Pippin and Hockings Green, with many old trees in the valley, still heaving with fruit every Autumn. Every evening this week, we’ve been picking apples, delighted by the range of sizes, colours and weights we’re finding.

    After our Tamar Valley Food Hubs deliveries this afternoon we’ll be getting ready for our 2nd Apple & Chilli Festival taking place at the Carpenters Arms tomorrow. We hire in the hydraulic press from the Tamar Valley Orchard Volunteers group and run a community apple pressing at the pub, it is always brilliantly attended with the press running solidly for over 6 hours so we can make sure everyone goes home with their juice. We’ll then juice apples for our own Tamar Valley Apple Juice.

    Tamar Grow Local pays a fair price for local apple varieties and the diversity of the apples we receive makes a delicious juice that is never the same twice. By purchasing the apples from local people, we hope to encourage them to keep their orchards or apple trees in their gardens and maintain the beautiful and traditional landscape of the Tamar Valley. This year we are producing small bottles of apple juice for cafes and restaurants so hope to be able to widen our customer base for a truly local and delicious product.

    Cooper Trees Nursery in nearby Carkeel hired in our Vigo hand press and crusher this week to do a demonstration pressing for the children. The children brought their apples from home for pressing, designing their own labels for the bottles and tasting the juice fresh from the press, when it is always so fresh - a real taste of Autumn.

    Tavistock College have been in touch again this year to help arrange pressing of their school orchard’s apples. To do this we work in partnership with another local apple juice maker who can deal with greater volumes than we can at our small premises. We’ve helped source some new trees for them this year so hope to see an ever-growing crop from them.

    Harrowbarrow & Metherell Community Orchard – very much an orchard in progress, has given us its first harvest this year. So far over 30 local varieties have been planted on an area of lost land, previously a willow and eucalyptus plantation for floristry. The land is gradually being cleared and trees planted to eventually be a recreational space for local residents and wildlife to enjoy. This year’s apples will be shared amongst orchard members and as well as some juice for sharing too! Hopefully, with a fair wind and the annual Wassail, we’ll be able to enjoy bigger harvests year on year!

    We’re looking forward to this year’s All Ways Apples Festival taking place in Plymouth on Wednesday 26th October. This urban apple day is always well-attended with lots of apple activities for children, masses of local produce and crafts and lots more!

    And after all this I think we’re going to need a bit of a rest!