We spent the morning chopping through brambles to the abandoned cherry orchard that joins our land. Last year the owners of the orchard told me that I could help myself to as many as we could make our way to.
The story of its abandonment is rather depressing. M. et Mme planted 500 cherry trees some years ago. They worked hard and produced wonderful fruit which they sold wholesale to a German company – for canning. Then, after a few years the company decided to buy from Spain where the cherries were cheaper and M. et Mme could not find a market for so many cherries. The orchard was no longer viable so they stopped working the trees.
Now it is completely overgrown, but the trees are in amazingly good shape and still produce wonderful cherries. So Ali & I hacked and chopped and sawed our way through dense undergrowth to release no fewer than TWELVE trees. The cherries are almost ripe so we picked a kilo to make some sorbet. And here they are.
Next week we’ll be in full picking mode, trying to beat the birds and the fruit flies. We’ll be jam-making a go-go.