Monday, 11 April 2016

Tree following April 2016. Breaking Bud!

The tree following meme hosted by Pat at 'The Squirrel Basket' is followed by bloggers from around the world. I am joining in again this year by following a Malus domestica 'Worcester Pearmain', growing in our community orchard.

I visited the Orchard on what turned out to be a wet Saturday morning.

The daffodils were doing their best to look cheerful when I arrived...

The Worcester Pearmain, below... just breaking bud.
You can read more about the Worcester Pearmain and its history in my previous blog Here

One of the other trees in the orchard, blossom is just about to open.

The volunteers have been busy during the winter planting 11 new apple trees and one pear.
They have chosen ones mainly with an historical connection with Worcestershire.

I have listed them below with information from either the Worcestershire Orchards (Please visit a very interesting website) or the National Fruit collection websites.

Worcester Pearmain
Without doubt the most well known of the County’s varieties and the only one still grown on any sort of commercial basis. It is believed to have originated from the pip of a Devonshire Quarrenden grown by a Mr Hale of Swan Pool, Worcester and was introduced as a commercial variety by Messers Smith of Worcester in 1874.

King Charles Pearmain
A dessert apple said to have been raised by Charles Taylor, a blacksmith of the village of Rushock in Worcestershire in 1821, claimed by Hogg in 1876 to have been introduced commercially by nurseryman John Smith of Worcester. It is also known as Rushock Pearmain.

Lord Hindlip
A late dessert apple whose name suggests an origin at Hindlip just north of Worcester, yet it was a Mr Watkins of Hereford who first submitted it to the RHS fruit committee in 1896.
(Hindlip Hall is now the Headquarters of West Mercia Police).

Newland Sack
This variety, as its name indicates, originates from the district of Newland just outside Malvern. According to the Herefordshire Pomona the variety arose around 1800, supposedly from a pip that grew from a discarded pile of pomace (the pulp left over from a cider press) at Newland Court.

William Crump
This apple takes its name from Mr William Crump who was the one time head gardener at Madresfield Court near Malvern. He is credited with raising the variety and personally exhibited it in 1908 when it received an RHS Award of Merit. It is believed to be a cross between Cox’s Orange Pippin and a Worcester Pearmain.
You can read more about William Crump on my blog Daffodil Sunday

Edward VII
Another of the older culinary apples that was no doubt displaced by Bramley. It dates from 1908 when it was introduced by Rowe’s nursery of Worcester. Having been first recorded in 1902 it is thought to be a Blenheim Orange X Golden Noble and won a Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Award of Merit in 1903.

The Worcester Black Pear
History of the Black Pear
The iconic Worcester Black Pear appears today in places such as the city coat of arms, the County Council crest and the cricket and rugby club badges, whilst an image of the pear blossom was borne as a badge by the Worcestershire Yeomanry Cavalry until 1956. The earliest reference to any pear associated with a crest is in relation to the Worcestershire Bowmen, depicting a pear tree laden with fruit on their banners at the battle of Agincourt in 1415. Drayton's poem of Agincourt mentions the fruit, where it is referred to as the badge of Worcester: "Wor'ster a pear tree laden with its fruit". 

Tradition has it that during the visit of Queen Elizabeth I to Worcester in 1575 she saw a pear tree laden with black pears, which had been moved from the gardens at White Ladies and re-planted in her honour by the gate through which the Queen was to enter the city. Noticing the tree Elizabeth is said to have directed the city to add three pears to its coat of arms. 

National Fruit Collection.

Pitmaston Russet Nonpareil
Dessert apple
Malus domestica Borkh.
Raised at Pitmaston near Worcester, England by John Williams. First fruited in 1814. Fruits have firm flesh with a rich, aromatic flavour.

Bramley's Seedling
Culinary apple
Malus domestica Borkh.
Triploid. Raised by Mary Ann Brailsford, Southwell, Nottinghamshire, England between 1809 and 1813 and introduced in 1865 by nurseryman H. Merryweather. First exhibited in 1876. Received a First Class Certificate from the Royal Horticultural Society in 1893. The most popular cooking apple grown in the UK.

King's Acre Pippin
Dessert apple
Malus domestica Borkh.
First recorded in 1897. Introduced by King's Acre Nurseries, Hereford in 1899. Received Award of Merit from RHS in 1897. Fruits have firm, coarse-textured, juicy flesh with a rich aromatic flavour.

Red Alkmene
Malus domestica Borkh.
A clone of Alkmene having a solid red flush. Renamed Red Windsor in 1998. Fruits have crisp, juicy flesh with an aromatic flavour.

Dessert apple
Malus domestica Borkh.
Raised in 1972 at East Malling Research Station, Kent. It received an Award of Merit in 1987 from the Royal Horticultural Society. Fruits are crisp and juicy with a Cox-like flavour.

National Fruit Collection Website.

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Please visit Pat at The Squirrel Basket to see how other trees from around the world are developing in April.