Residency at Audley End Part II
Continuing from my earlier post, the autumn at Audley End gardens provided a truly spectacular range of pears - forever my favourite fruit to hunt out in a garden. Armed with a basket, which quickly became a box, and then two boxes, I simply couldn’t help myself moving from tree to tree. A wonderful array of pear varieties, size, forms and colours presented themselves. Every avenue of the garden is lined with espalier fruit trees and every corner turned presented a wonderful new species of pear or apple. ‘Hacon’s Incomparable’, ‘Duchesse d’Angouleme’, ‘Louise Bonne of Jersey’, the unfortunately titled ‘Clapp’s Favourite’ to name but a few.
One volunteer keeps track of the apple and pear harvesting calendar. An older gentleman, he apparently has an incredible memory and oversees the entire crop. Every pear is picked to time for perfect ripening. Gemma assured me it was safe to take some slightly early for casting, she would try to explain to him later…
Having harvested produce and ‘preserved’ many of them using part of the casting process, my hope is to cast in time for each season in the garden. I’m normally a month or so behind since I have to wait to collect then create. My hope is this preparation will allow me to truly time to seasonal collections next year.
Images here show some of the smaller varieties cast in bronze - my particular favourites were the tiny D’ete pears, taken in August so a much earlier variety than the others. I’ve never seen such a tiny and perfectly formed pear.
I’m looking forward to displaying a mixture of these pears all together - sitting as a group to emphasise the wonderful variety of form.
The English Heritage site for Audley End - https://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/audley-end-house-and-gardens/