Apple harvest at Brockhampton

A trailer-load of apples in the orchard

Come October, the apples on the estate will be ready to harvest. Premature picking can lead to starchy, bitter tasting apples so we like to leave them until they are perfectly ripe.

To determine whether our apples are ready to be picked, we place a cupped hand under the fruit and gently twist, if they release without applying force then they are ready to eat.

Apples hanging on a bough
Red and green apples in orchard
Apples hanging on a bough

Our mature orchards are full of traditional varieties. Our cider apples include Strawberry Norman and Tanners Red and we also have cooking apple varieties such as the Herefordshire Beefing and Newton Wonder. Our King’s Acre Pippin are delicious dessert apples whilst several varieties of eaters such as Herefordshire Russets, Stoke Edith Pippin and Lord Hindlip make for a tasty snack.

Beautiful apple blossom in the springtime
Beautiful apple blossom in the springtime
Beautiful apple blossom in the springtime

Once ripe, our apples will be harvested by hand as they have been for many years on the estate. The cookers and eaters will supply the tea-room with fresh produce and the cider apples will be stored until they are pressed. 

Visitors can join us for our Apple Weekend where we celebrate the different heritage varieties we have growing in our orchards. We will be accompanied by historical orchard expert James Bisset, who will give talks on the timeline on British orchards and answer visitors questions.

Apples waiting to be pressed
A large trailer full of apples
Apples waiting to be pressed

Harvest time is an incredibly important and nostalgic time at Brockhampton. It is a process that has taken place on the estate for many centuries, always by hand and is a tradition we’d love to keep here for many more years to come.