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Herefordshire cider-maker toasts new orchard
BOUTIQUE cider-maker Henney’s new orchard is keeping an old-school flavour.
In the great tradition of Herefordshire cider-makers, Mike Henney may be relatively new to the game, but he was keen to keep his process rooted in tradition when planting his Tree Farm orchard at Bishop’s Frome.
When planting on the four-acre plot, Mike took tradition over economics – spacing out the 120 trees instead of creating the kind of closely-spaced bush orchard that requires more pest control that produces a bigger crop.
“We wanted to create something that would enhance the landscape and help preserve a tradition in Herefordshire,” said Mike’s website.
“Plus traditional orchards are visually beautiful and a haven for wildlife, and given we are planting the orchard right on our doorstep, we wanted to create something we could enjoy.”
The trees themselves come from 10 different varieties, all chosen because of their ability to blend flavours – the “juice-ability” of the apples – and the season their fruit matures.
After being selected and grown at a nearby nursery for the last two years, the trees were planted at the orchard over the last few weeks.
And having gone from fermenting in an airing cupboard to producing over 200,000 gallons a year in 17 years, Mike will hope his young trees mature with a similar success.