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Tour of the West Dean Fruit Garden

Fourteen members of the Chichester Society enjoyed a tasting tour of the West Dean Fruit garden on 21 September, led by David Wilson who works there as a volunteer with the apples.

David explaining West Dean's apple collection
David explaining West Dean’s apple collection

David also added the history of some of the varieties; Granny Smith, who was a Sussex woman from Rye, though she raised her apple in Australia after emigrating; the oldest recorded Sussex variety, Golden Pippin from Parham Park, dating from 1629; Red Devil, so sensitive to sunlight that you can stencil your initials on it; Margil, originally grown at the Palace of Versailles; and Howgate Wonder from the Isle of Wight which for many years held the recordof the world’s heaviest apple, over 4lb!

At the end of the tour, the party confessed to being ‘appled out’!