Apples have been grown and Cider made at Higher Plot for hundreds of years and there are still around 30 trees still standing which are at least 100 years old. The orchard is known as Half Moon. The one next door is called Full Moon because of the round shape of the hill. Over the next year we are going to start work on restoring it and planting new trees including some perry pears. The apples are old varietals including Golden Noble, Arthur Turner, Morgan Sweet and Bramleys.
The Ton of apples that we crushed for the 2008 Bottle Fermented Cider.
This is a real contrast to the vineyard where control over clonal selection, soil management, spraying and strict pruning is supposed to produce a regular (in terms of quality and quantity) crop. With the orchard, the trees are so entwined with their environment that they crop massively with no disease on a biannual basis with no intervention. This is a pure example of how overtime biodynamic supporters see a natural balance establishing itself . I can really understand this but wonder how we could incorporate it into the vineyard over a number of years. The simple answer would have to be do nothing and see what happens! Maybe you lose everything for the first 2-3 years but then the balance would be acheived as the vines fought back.