Cider Musings

The Cider Orchard Year

Watching the changes in the orchard thoughout year is a wonderful trip as the seasons come and go. Where does it start? With the dormant bare trees? The blossom in Spring? The fruitlets forming. The harvest of the apples. And then the cycle continues again. A circle without end.
Or perhaps the processing of the apples and the fermenting of the juice into cider?  However the long slow maturation of the methode albion cider, on its lees is over several yearly cycles.
The wheel of time turns and the orchard matures. New trees are grafted some trees die out or have to be cut down.
The life in the orchard is rich with bird life and of course the sheep contently grazing. 
10th Jan 2001
Slap ma Girdle scion wood 
16th October 2001
Grafted cider tree in newly planted orchard
7th November 2001
Rainbow over Beau Vista orchard
25th July 2004
Cold start to the day. Snow on the Tararua ranges over the Wairarapa plains
21st  May 2005 
Pressing the first Harvest 
22nd October 2005 
Removing old trees from the paddock for extending the orchard
23rd October 2005 
Honey bee hives for pollination. 
21st October 2011
Early photo of Beau Vista  orchard. From Dalefield Road 
13th September 2012
Cleft grafting perry scion wood.  
1st Oct 2012
A Winter's day
15th March 2013 
2013 was a dry summer 
8th Sept 2013
The Shropshire sheep arrive
28th October 2013 
The Taipaitangata stream (and the 7 springs creek to the side) that brings down silt from the Tararua ranges and floods the orchard periodically.
Amazingly this can dry up in late summer . 
1st December 2013
Kingston Black apples
27th February 2014
The local Taipaitangata street flooding the orchard. 
17th March 2014
Bringing in the apples
21st April 2014
Wildlife is important at the orchard which is organic. This Kotare ( NZ Kingfisher) stayed with us after the storm. 
9th April 2014
Early bottle design
10th April 2014
Cider fermenting. In barrel cooling and temperature probe
11th April 2014
Crab apples to attract the bees as they flower earlier than the cider trees
18th April 2014
Sheep on high ground during flooding! 
20th April 2014
The debris that the flood brings down to the Dalefield Road culvert over the Taipaitangata stream 
4th October 2014 
Apple blossom 
14th December 2014
Newly planted hedge for flood and wind barrier 
11th January 2015 
The Roto-Jolly gets its first use. 
15th January 2015
The lees are all settled into the bottle neck 
3rd October 2022
Pear blossom
6th December 2022
Beech hedge enclosure to the apple orchard
7th July 2023
Cold in the orchard in winter
30th August 2023
Perry pear blossom 
20th September 2023
Sampling cider apples at Perry's cider orchard with Liz Copas and James Crowden
27th October 2023
Cider apple blossom 
28th October 2023
Apple blossom 
4th November 2023
Shropshire sheep grazing on the spring grass
5th November 2023 
Home from the NZ Cider Festival in Hastings with Gold and other awards
10th November 2023 
Moody spring weather 
14th November 2023 
Riddling 2020 perry after 2years secondary fermentation 
18th November 2023
Buttercups in the orchard swath
7th January 2024
measuring inbottle pressure during secondary fermentation
2nd March 2024
Perry pears. The harvest begins
6th March 2024
Sunset over the Tararua ranges behing TeePee Cider 
8th March 2024
Kingston Black apples ready to harvest 
The new enlarged apple processing area operational this season
First wash of apples
First cull of rots on apple ladder
Second wash and cull of rots 
Pomace from the scratter
9th March 2024
Building the cheese of pomace
8th March 2024
The long apple picking ladder
Bringing the apples out of the orchard into the cider shed
15th March 2024
Storm brewing over the orchard
19th March 2024. A mix of Ellis Bitter and Michilin in the first wash 
A mix of Ellis Bitter and Michelin in the first wash
24th March 2024 
Lichen probably Usnea barrata growing on the apple trees in our clean Wairarapa air 
24th March 2024
Ripe Northwood apples  in the evening sun
13th April 2024 Attended the Japan Cider Cup
8th May 2024 Bletting the Medlars 
17th June 2024
And at opitimal ripeness after bletting. Medlar paste to be added to the cider for further fermentation. 
26th May 2024. Wintertime 
the last stragglers! 
8th June 2024
Winetopia. TeePee Cider and Esses Wine were asked to battle "Apples versus Grapes". Time to have a hard hat on! All in good taste. Mel and I finished agreeing it was a draw. 
19th June 2024 Annual orchard pruning bonfire. The ash is returned to the orchard. The prunings  have been drying from last year and provide habitat for wildlife during that period. 
11th June 2024. The orchard is dormant with next years buds resting.