Apples galore at Snowshill

A bumper year for apples will see a huge range on show at Snowshill Manor’s annual apple festival.

The National Trust property’s two orchards have more than 50 different apples, including many heritage varieties, such as ‘Gloucester Underleaf’, ‘Hunts Duke of Gloucester’ and ‘Gloucester Royal’.

In addition, head gardener Vicky Cody has sourced many others from other orchards and the festival will showcase more than 100 varieties.

“We want to encourage people to look at the many varieties of apple which exist – the vast majority of which can’t be found in supermarkets. We have eaters, cookers, crab apples and cider apples each of which can be used in a different way,” explains Vicky.

“There are some delightful surprises. We have ‘Devonshire Quarrenden’ growing in the Snowshill Manor orchard which is a tiny little thing, first recorded back in the 1670s. Barely an inch in diameter and deep red, it is somehow packed with flavour, a bright little thing which is quite unexpected for its size.”

Visitors will be able taste apples in pies, puddings, sausages and chutney in the manor’s tea rooms and there will be demonstrations of apple juicing by a cider maker, talks on successful apple growing and a glass-fronted bee hive on show.

Snowshill Apple Festival runs from Friday October 16 to Sunday October 18 2015 from 11am to 5pm. Normal admission prices apply. More information is available at

Acers light up the autumn

Nurseryman and designer Peter Dowle will be helping gardeners get the best out of autumn with his annual Acer Week.

The Chelsea gold medallist will be on hand to offer advice on choosing acers, how to grow them and planting combinations.

With more than 50 varieties in stock at his Howle Hill Nursery near Ross-on-Wye, he says it promises to be a spectacular show.

“It’s a chance for people to see out beautiful range of acers in their full autumn glory.”

The nursery is open from 9am to 5pm from October 12 to 17, 2015.