Crunch time at Erddig as gardeners work with weather for 20th year of famous Apple Festival

By Ben Miller | 20 September 2010
A photo of a huge number of apples
Erddig is looking forward to a fruitful 20th Apple Festival
Festival: The Apple Festival, Erddig Hall and Gardens, Wrexham, October 2-3 2010

"We all had a terrible winter," says Glyn Smith. "There was a lot of damage to the trees, and most blossomed very late. Then we had a drought in the Spring.

"You could say this is a year when many of the trees are in resting mode, and many of the varieties we grow only produce every two years. We are lucky that for many of them this is their year for fruit - it is just the weather that has played its part."

The Head Gardener at glorious 18th century country house Erddig may have a smaller crop to choose from than usual, but the 20th instalment of what could well be the highlight of the calendar year for apple lovers is unlikely to turn sour.

A photo of two people giving a cookery demonstration inside a tent
Cookery demonstrations and cider at the 18th century country house
The dry weather has given the fruit "good colour", says Smith, and picking has already begun in pre-autumnal earnest.

More than 100 varieties will be on display, with everything from cookery demonstrations to live music and cider downing on the bill.

"The news recently has been saying this is a bumper year because of the weather, but Erddig does very little in spraying fruit. We prefer a more organic method of production," he adds.

"The big producers will have sprayed to fight the impact on the weather this year, but that's what makes life interesting. Every year is never the same."

Runs 11am-5pm. Admission £3.05-£10.30 (family ticket £15.25-£25.75).

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