21 Aug 2023
Swailey here, and I'd like to start by sharing that our new tractors have arrived here at Puratos Fourayes!
The two new tactors have exhaust after-treatment systems, making them better for the environment as it helps to decrease the number of emissions released. This is an example of our ongoing commitment to looking for sustainable solutions for our farm.
Our old tractors, which will be refurbished and displayed on the farm, will be going into retirement!
The crop is looking better than expected which is great for the summertime. The apples, pictured below with some secondary blossom, are swelling at a good rate.
Like many orchards this summer, we've been working hard to protect the fruit from blue bug pests and fungus spores that were whipped up by the high winds in July and then stuck around on the dew from the cold nights. Fortunately, we've been able to manage these threats to the apples and we're on track for a wonderful harvest.
Our ever-changing weather conditions affect whether we will be able to harvest our Bramley's at the right time.
As apples need a lot of sunshine and a certain amount of rain, like most crop, it is bad for the apples if there is too much rain. This is because the apples swell very quickly and lots of water then migrates into the cell. In turn, the apples become watery which causes them to become bruised because the fruit is so soft. This is not great for the harvest period as the apples won't be as hard as they need to be.
We are currently at the stage of measuring apples in some of our orchards, and I am happy to say that it is good news as they're swelling at a rate of 6-7mm each week. To pick during harvesting season, at least 55-60% of the apples should be over 80mm and 35% of the apples should be between 70-80mm before we can start picking.
I am pleased to say that now, in the middle of August, we are ready for the upcoming harvest, and we plan to start picking on the 4th of September.
To end my report, I'd like to leave you with a fun fact.
Did you know that here at Puratos Fourayes, we have an orchard which is known as the Crimson Bramley Orchard?
The Crimson Bramley Apples are much redder than Bramley's and were planted in the hope that we wouldn't have to use so much sugar in the production of our finished products.
However, as we later found out, the red colour is deceiving as they still have the same sweetness as our other Bramley apples. On a positive note, they do make for a really pretty looking apple and make this orchard glow 😊
It was great to catch up.
All the best,