Storing away apples for the winter is one of the most satisfying autumn jobs, and today I completed my apple harvest. Everyone’s apples round here are ready earlier than usual this year, due to the very hot sunny summer – thank heavens the trees survived the drought. I watered my trees a couple of times, with wastewater carried from the kitchen – it wouldn’t have felt right using a hosepipe and scarce tap water in such a drought, and my 3000 litres of stored rainwater had been used up before the end of July!
It’s actually been a surprisingly good year for apples – perhaps the outcome would have been very different if we’d not had quite a wet September after the appallingly hot and dry July and August.
I’ve been doing a bit of woodwork, making a couple more apple crates to match my old ones. These crates look very rustic and attractive I think (old on the left, new on the right) but I don’t recommend using triangular wood as the corner blocks, it really makes the crates very difficult to assemble. Any more I make will just have square corner blocks.
In my garden I have one old apple tree (3+ crates of apples), three trees that are about 9 years old (still only producing one crate per tree), and two young espaliers that are so new that it’ll be three years at least before they have any fruit. Plus two big old plum trees, and an espaliered pear tree, 9 years old and very productive. Not a bad orchard, for a suburban semi… it’s one of those old council houses from the days when some council houses had very generous gardens. That and the allotment give me a fair amount of food security, and a great deal of pleasure. Photo of my autumnal looking allotment below 🙂