Apple day at Calke Abbey

Apple day is an annual celebration of apples and orchards held throughout October. Apple day aims to highlight and celebrate this versatile fruit and to raise awareness of the varieties we are in danger of losing. It also serves to make us mindful of the provenance and traceability of the food we purchase and consume. It is celebrated in various villages, markets, Wildlife Trust and National Trust properties throughout the UK. We recently visited Calke Abbey to celebrate apple day in their huge walled gardens.

Apples in a crate from Calke abbey

Apple Day

I was sure that I would find the day interesting but I wasn’t so sure that it would engage the kids. I needn’t have worried (I also needn’t have fed them beforehand!) When we arrived in the garden we were faced with a large variety of tents and stalls, all with different activities and produce. Junior and I made a bee line for the tasting tent. It was full of varieties of apple for you to try, each with a description of taste, history and ways to use them. I had no idea there were so many types! Junior soon started sampling and we both picked our favourites.

Different varieties of apple to sample

The girls really enjoyed using an apple press and squeezing freshly pressed juice. The appearance left somewhat to be desired but the taste was divine! We also got to try an apple spiraliser and to eat our newly peeled snack. We all loved this part and an apple spiraliser is now firmly on my wish list.

An apple being spiralised

The gardens

There were lots of stands and apple in many guises, from cake to coleslaw, to sample and to purchase. We had a busy few hours which we rounded off by exploring the rest of the properties’ gardens. There was a vast abundance of produce both in the vegetable patch and in the many greenhouses and hothouses.

Pumpkins in the vegetable patchThere were huge pumpkins in the vegetable patch

Scarecrow in the vegetable patchA not so scary scarecrow

Trellis growing squashes and pumpkinsA trellis full of varieties of squashes

The children really enjoyed the whole day and did not complain once, which is always a sigh of a successful day. So successful in fact, that we purchased a little apple sapling for our garden. We were advised that it may be a year or two before we get round apples. I am very excited to see what grows!

There are events running up and down the country so I am sure you can find an apple day near you. It really is a fun and informative day out for the whole family!


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  1. 27th October 2017 / 12:45 AM

    Children who didn’t complain once, I can honestly say I’ve never experienced that. Everything pic you posted and description makes me want an apple. Thankfully there is a Gala apple staring at me from the kitchen counter right now. A spiralizer, cool.

    • Louisa
      27th October 2017 / 3:13 PM

      I hope you enjoyed your apple!

  2. 26th October 2017 / 9:09 PM

    What a brilliant event and day out, I’ve seen a lot of these this year and I don’t want to miss out for 2018 as I missed this season! #CountryKids

    • Louisa
      27th October 2017 / 3:14 PM

      There are still a few events running in early November so you might find one, if not I hope you get to visit one in 2018

  3. 26th October 2017 / 9:32 AM

    What a lovely event, I will have to keep an eye out for Apple Days at our local farms.
    I love the use of the Apple spiriliser! #countrykids

    • Louisa
      27th October 2017 / 3:22 PM

      There are lots of events nationwide, so I hope you find one

  4. 26th October 2017 / 8:17 AM

    It does sound like a great day! I can’t imagine it was a easy sell for the day but it’s wonderful they enjoyed it! Who knew you could have so much fun with apples! #countrykids

    • Louisa
      27th October 2017 / 3:21 PM

      You’re right, it doesn’t sound like something to get excited about but it was really fun!

  5. 26th October 2017 / 7:56 AM

    I did t even know you could buy an apple spirliser! It looks great. What a wonderful day out perfect for this time of year. #CountryKids

    • Louisa
      27th October 2017 / 3:20 PM

      They are fab, I’m waiting for ours to be delivered, the kids can’t wait!

  6. 25th October 2017 / 10:53 PM

    How wonderful to by an apple tree from your day, it will be something to remember apply day for a long time to come. We planted our orchard just 3 years ago and have apples there this year, the time goes so quickly! Sounds like a wonderful day for the kids made interesting and fun for all, I’ll have to look out for something similar here.

    Thank you for sharing with me on #CountryKids

    • Louisa
      27th October 2017 / 3:19 PM

      I wish we had space for an orchard! I am thrilled with our tree and hope it grows well so we can enjoy our own fruit.

  7. 25th October 2017 / 9:31 PM

    Sounds like you all had a fun day. We used to have an apple day at a local farm but it hasn’t run for the last couple of years. The girls loved it though when we went. Love the look of that apple spiraliser 🙂 #countrykids

    • Louisa
      27th October 2017 / 3:15 PM

      It’s a shame the event is no longer on, they are great days out aren’t they?

  8. 25th October 2017 / 11:04 AM

    Fantastic photos of a great educational day out. I think it’s important for our little ones to learn about where there food comes from. #CountryKids

    • Louisa
      25th October 2017 / 5:20 PM

      It really is isn’t it? I think they sometimes think it magically appears at the supermarket!

  9. 25th October 2017 / 1:23 AM

    What a lovely event, what a great way to make people aware of the variety of apples, and locally grown produce. Sounds like you all had a lovely day! #countrykids

    • Louisa
      25th October 2017 / 5:21 PM

      We really did thank you. It was an eye opener to see how many varieties there are!

  10. 23rd October 2017 / 6:03 PM

    Lovely post. It looks great here 🙂 You captured some beautiful photos #MMBC

    • Louisa
      24th October 2017 / 1:43 PM

      Thank you, it is a lovely property. I would like to return and visit the house too

    • Louisa
      24th October 2017 / 1:42 PM

      It’s a shame there is nothing similar near you, it is a lovely day out x

  11. 23rd October 2017 / 4:18 PM

    Looks a fab day out and nothing like fresh fruit and veg. X #mmbc

    • Louisa
      24th October 2017 / 1:40 PM

      I think it’s important for the kids to see how food is grown so that they can appreciate it x

  12. 23rd October 2017 / 2:42 PM

    I look forward to fall trips to apple orchards for fresh cider. I’ve never tried to press it myself. Is it hard to do?

    • Louisa
      23rd October 2017 / 2:49 PM

      The children managed to press it easily, it must be a case of having the correct equipment!

  13. 23rd October 2017 / 8:36 AM

    Love these kinds of days. It’s amazing how many different apple varieties there are and how different they can taste. I can recommend the apple corer and peeler. We have one. I’m not sure how I survived without it at this time of year. I have two barrow loads of apples today to process, and much more on the trees. Hope your apple sapling thrives and provides you with lots of fruit in the future.

    • Louisa
      23rd October 2017 / 2:51 PM

      I am excited to see how many apples we can produce in the years to come, although I expect it will be MANY years before we can compare to the volume you get! The kids have not stopped eating apples since we went so it has had a really positive effect on them!

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