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Archive for July, 2009

Tatton Park Summer Fruit Show

Collection of six dishes of fruit awarded Hogg Medal

Collection of six dishes of fruit awarded Hogg Medal

For the first time the Royal Horticultural Society’s Summer Fruit Competition, held last week,  was staged at their Tatton Park Show  in Cheshire, rather than at Hampton Court, outside London. This new location brought the Show within the range of our man from Nottingham, who bagged almost all the firsts!

Adrian Baggaley won eight firsts and the Royal Horticultural Society’s prestigious Hogg Medal, given in memory of the great Victorian  pomologist, Dr Robert Hogg. The Hogg Medal was awarded to his collection of six dishes of fruit –  pictured above; clockwise from bottom left, White Marseille figs, Tomcott apricots, Doyenné d’Eté pears, Summer Sun cherries, Lapins cherries and Red Lake redcurrants. He won the prize for  ‘Best plate in show’ with Summer Sun cherries and first prize for his ‘Basket of fruit containing at least four kinds’ (below) – in fact Adrian’s contained a total of twenty kinds and varieties, from apricots, figs, cherries, black, red, pink and white currants to gooseberries. And  yet further firsts were given for individual plates of currants, cherries, figs and jostaberries.

Well done Adrian! Many congratulations!

Fruit Forum

Prize winning 'Basket of fruit'

Prize winning 'Basket of fruit'

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I’m trying to find a blackberry grower in Kent or Surrey to talk to for an article in a forthcoming issue of  Country Kitchen magazine. Can anyone help?

David Porter

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Spartan unthinned

Spartan unthinned

I have been thinning  apples and it made me wonder about some of the ‘accepted wisdom’.

I realise that ‘king fruit’ do not keep well and are more inclined to be lumpy, bumpy and generally fail to conform to grading standards. So I guess we feel we need to remove king fruits when thinning.

However, what about the early varieties that do not keep, but we want to pick as soon as they are big enough?

Emneth Early, Grenadier, Lord Grosvenor and other early codlins are culinary apples that spring to mind.

Eaters might include Gladstone, the numerous ‘Jennetings’, Stark’s Earlest, White Transparent, Lady Hollendale, Irish Peach, Beauty of Bath and so on.

Does anybody know of a good reason why we should not thin to leave king fruit on the tree for these varieties?

If we desire size and earliness in a variety, why should we exclude king fruit?

(A ‘king fruit’ is a fruit formed from the centre flower of a blossom cluster. It is usually precocious in formation and often has an abnormal stalk and cavity. King fruit may have inferior keeping qualities).

Bob Lever

Spartan thinned

Spartan thinned

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I have been procrastinating about making wine from the grapes on the vine I have. It has put on so many grapes over the years and now that I have finally made my mind up to make wine the grapes this year are starting to rot. I think it is called ‘black rot’ as best I can tell from my web research. Does anyone have a remedy for the problem I have described?

Cory Norton

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Sloe3

I have a young sloe tree in my garden and this year a number of the fruits have become distorted and miscoloured. Those fruit that have changed are brown in colour and considerably enlarged, also there appears to be similar growths on parts of some boughs. Can anybody advise me what the problem (and potential solution) might be?

Mike Jones

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