Shire Book: Orchards
Whether in blossom and laden with fruit, orchards are places of great beauty. Throughout history, they have played an important role in country, and also city, life, providing not just food and drink, but also a haven for wildlife and a setting for age-old customs and social gatherings.
Some of Britain's surviving orchards are almost 600 years old. But when did orchards first appear? Why are there over 3,000 varieties of apple, so varied in colour, shape, texture and taste? What is wassailing and who did it? Why has England lost almost two-thirds of its orchards since 1950 - and what is being done about it today? This beautifully illustrated book reveals the engaging story and rich diversity of Britain's orchards and answers many intriguing questions along the way.