Well, not quite...
I've never been apple picking before, so decided to do a bit of online research to find our nearest orchards, thinking we could merrily pop along and help ourselves....
But it seems unless you're in the know, there aren't too many of these around. Most orchards my neck of the woods are either privately owned, or community orchards.
Community orchards do sound like a great idea. They may be owned or leased for or by the community or parish council, or by a local authority or voluntary body. As well as enjoying the place, a gathering of friends, neighbours and locals can share the harvest or profit from its sale, taking responsibility for any work in the orchard.
This sounds like great thing to be part of. So with energy I contacted the trust who run the local orchard.
Unfortunately my nearest community orchard asks friends and visitors not to pick the apples, as they are all collected to be used for apple juice, with the proceeds from Apple Day sales going back to the trust that runs the orchard and the park it sits in - so as much as I love this idea, my plans for foraging for free apples was scuppered!
Not to be put off, my tack changed slightly and I did find a lovely farm orchard running PYO apples rasps and blackberries half an hours drive away... so although my romantic dreams of stumbling across a crumpled tree in the middle of nowhere laden with fruit just waiting for me were dashed, we were still able to pick THE most delicious apples I have ever tasted.
And the boys loved it.
And look what we made!
A dorset apple cake with additional lemon and blackberries to add to the merriment. Deelish!
Thanks also for your lovely comments on my last post, the boys have both had a great week at nursery and school, and I've had a great week clock watching, going to the loo unaccompanied and achieving and completing various household tasks!
Happy weekends to you all x