We had a very special Midsummer Day in the North Tyne Valley. Falling on a Saturday, it really allowed us to enjoy a seasonal landmark, especially with it being a beautiful summer day. Once the grass was cut, and a bit of weeding out of the way, we thought we’d inspect the orchard for any hints of fruity development.

In our previous ‘Seasonal Update’ we reflected on the outstanding blossom season that we witnessed in the Spring, echoed in an article by the National Trust explaining that the mild winter and exceptionally sunny Spring had been the perfect weather for such a bloom. We hoped that May and June might ‘behave themselves’ and not be too wet, with this leading to a potential bumper fruit harvest.

We are purveyors of preserves, rather than horticultural experts, but we do believe that the continued warmth experienced, with just about the right amount of rain here and there, has been pretty good for our trees. So it would seem when we inspected the crabapples in the orchard. As you can see, the branches are weighed down by the young fruits. It was like Easter, Birthday and Christmas all at once.

This is excellent news! Our special edition ‘Crab Apple Jelly’ is made exclusively from North Tyne Valley crab apples, so we only make what is available locally to us. So far, so good! 2020 could be the year of the crab apple. A little mention too for damsons – it’s a little early, but they’re just starting and looking good also.