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After storm Doris has finally blown away hopefully we will be treated to a warm Spring with sunshine and beautiful blossom!
If you are looking for new ways of revelling in Springtime, we’ve drawn up a list of blossom walks and orchard events - click on the event names for the web links. If you’re aware of an event near you that isn’t on the list, please do get in touch with us via Facebook or Twitter.
Hanami (Cherry Blossom Walks) – Faversham, 1st April - May 2017
Hanami is the Japanese festival dedicated to cherry blossom (sakura) and is celebrated across Japan every year. Brogdale is one of the only places in the UK to celebrate Hanami and with the largest collection of fruit trees in the world.
Celebrate in Japanese style by enjoying the Hanami exhibition and a tour of their beautiful orchards before relaxing with a picnic under the most beautiful trees in the orchards! (Picnic not included)
River Parrett Trail
If you want to enjoy the beauty of Somerset’s orchards in a leisurely way, you can follow some of the 50 mile River Parrett Trail running from Chedington in Dorset to Bridgwater Bay on the Bristol Channel. This walking route meanders along the river and through some beautiful Somerset villages.
South Somerset Family Cycle Trail
Cycling is an ideal way to explore large swathes of the Somerset countryside via quiet lanes. The National Trust have published a 20 mile circular route from Barrington Court to Montacute House, through the heart of cider orchard country, giving you a great opportunity to see some delightful blossom. Their guide points out flora, fauna and landmarks to look out for along the way.
Orchard Trail at The Somerset Cider Brandy Co - Kinsbury Episcopi
The Orchard Trail at The Somerset Cider Brandy Company (Burrow Hill Cider) is well worth a visit. The trail will take you through extensive and beautiful orchards and from Burrow Hill there is a fantastic 360º panoramic view of the whole of the Somerset levels. You can also see the impressive stills “Fifi” and “Josephine”, learn about the process of cider brandy making and, if you are lucky, have a tasting!
Sheppy’s Cider - near Taunton
There’s plenty to experience when visiting Sheppy’s. You can wander through the orchards in blossom or along any of the extensive farm and orchard tracks. After your walk, stroll around Sheppy’s Rural Life Museum to learn more about cider-maker’s year and other rural crafts. There is a chance to spot farm animals, a playground for children, a café which serves delicious cream teas and lunches, and a shop selling local cheeses, jams, not forgetting cider!
Blossomtime - Putley 30th April and 1st May
For an afternoon, a day or a full weekend, the Big Apple’s Blossomtime is a springtime celebration of English apples and cider in the Herefordshire parishes of the Marcle Ridge. The local orchards are famous for their cider fruit and excellent eating apples, and trees should be in full blossom over the weekend.
West Cider Mill - Ledbury
Discover the secrets of traditional cider making, stroll through the award winning Henry Weston Courtyard Garden, take a walk through the orchard and see one of the largest cider bottle collections in the world at Westons Cider Mill’s Visitor Centre. Treat yourself to a delicious meal at the Scrumpy House Restaurant or a slice of homemade cake at the Bottle Museum Tea Rooms.
The Blossom - Wychavon, Throughout April
Get lost in the enchanting blossom and celebrate the illustrious Blossom Trail by taking either one of their guided coach tours, popular blossom walks or for the active amongst you there is the annual Blossom Bikeaway.
The Vale bursts into life with the subtle pink tones of cherry and apple blossom and the striking white blooms of plums and pears. Just follow the Blossom Trail, a 50 mile AA yellow signposted route. The Blossom Trail is among five major blossom events in the world; with others taking place as far afield as Japan and the USA.
Explore the blossom by bike on Sunday 2nd April. With a choice of three routes.
Blossom Trail Walks
For walkers, there are three local walks, all between three and six miles long. These are a series of 3 walks designed with springtime blossom in mind, but they can be appreciated at any time during the year.
Asparafest - Evesham, 2nd - 4th June 2017
Described as ‘Worcestershire’s Aspara-tastic Music and Food Festival’, Asparafest, is a fun-filled and zany festival which celebrates all things asparagus! Running from 2nd - 4th June, there is music, family crafts, CBeebies Mr Bloom, aerial theatre, a cookery kitchen vintage vehicles, food stalls and a real ale and cider festival. This year’s special guests are Felice Tocchini in the cookery kitchen and gastronaut Stefan Gates. Camping is available.
Colour is bursting in the gardens at Killerton Estate at the moment. Enjoy the blossom, those magnificent magnolias, and try Killerton’s new Nature of Fashion Walk, where you can discover how fashion has been styled by natural dyes and plant fibres, many of which grow in Killerton’s garden. When you’ve finished, why not enjoy lunch at the Kitchen Restaurant or a slice of cake at the Stables Café? You could even treat yourself to a bottle or two of Killerton Estate’s cider or apple juice, which won awards in the 2012 Fine Farm Produce Awards.
Urbane Forager - Hampshire
The Urbane Forager will be holding various blossom walks in Mansbridge Community Orchard and Peartree Green. Southampton, Hampshire.
They also lead various foraging talks, walks, picking picnics (Picknicks) around Hampshire throughout the Summer and Autumn.
Most events are family friendly and free.
All details are published on the Urbane Forager blog, http://theurbaneforager.blogspot.co.uk/ sometimes at fairly short notice and weather dependant.
County Armagh is known as the Orchard of Ireland because of its many apple orchards, which span over 4,000 acres of countryside.
Apple Blossom Sundays - Ardress House – Sunday 7th May 2017
Set in the middle of County Armagh’s rich apple-growing county, Ardress House will be celebrating the apple blossom with apple treats and fun for the family. There will be orchard tours, local ciders and apple produce on sale, and an apple trail for the kids.
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