Cider Musings

Herefordshire Pomona


Hereford

The Herefordshire Pomona is a 19th-century catalogue of the apples and pears that were grown in this county in England Written by Drs Robert Hogg and Henry Bull.

It originated from The Wollhope Naturalist Field Society.  Over a period of about ten years in the late 19th century, the  Club  held an annual autumn show in Hereford featuring the local varieties of apples and pears. The club members were worried that although Herefordshire was famous for its orchards “it was very remarkable that so few of the best varieties of apples should appear in the markets, or the fruit shops”, Dr Robert Hogg, at the time Vice-President of the Royal Horticultural Society RHS , and local doctor and former president of the Woolhope club, Dr Henry Bull, catalogued and described the fruit displayed at the shows.  was one of the first attempts to fully catalogue the existing varieties of English fruit and has been called “a classic of late Victorian natural history”   Only 600 copies were ever printed.  

The book originally appeared in seven issues, the first part appearing in 1878 and the last in 1884. Once complete the seven parts were collected together and published by Jakeman & Carver

                                                 Issue 3, 21 shillings!

Included are 441 original watercolours produced by Alice Blanche Ellis and Edith Elizabeth Bull ( Dr. Bull’s daughter). These were the coloured by William Hooker An odd situation as Hooker had been drawing and engraving plants, some of them fruit cultivars, for the Transactions of the Horticultural Society since at least 1807, but it may be that Hooker, based in London, was not thought a good candidate to illustrate a book so resoundingly regional in its application. And also of interest is that a Frances Stackhouse Acton helped provide some of the illustrations. She was the same Frances Knight who provided some illustrations for Thomas Knight's Pomona Herefordienisis 70 years before!  was a major step forwards in illustration realism and included not only the different fruits, buds, blossoms of the cultivars but also  the blights  which attacked them. 

                                              Lichen and eaten leaves! 

In addition it contained several essays on apples and cider making including "The Orchard and its products Cider and Perry by the Rev Henry Bulmer , the father of Percy Bulmer who established Bulmers Cider. Henry was knowledgable on cider and a friend of Bull."  He also included this lovely poem by Tennyson