One in particular produces hundreds of sweet, delicious apples like those on the left which I photographed last year. The problem is that the tree is quite high making the fruit difficult to harvest.
Mrs P came up with a Heath Robinson contraption to help with this, basically a long aluminium pole that used to be part of a window cleaning kit with a kiddy’s fishing net lashed to the end to catch the apples.
And it worked, sort of, although it wasn’t easy to use and we still lost quite a bit of fruit as they missed the net and then got damaged in the fall. This year she decided on some ‘professional’ help.
That’s it on the right. A Wolf Garten RGM Adjustable Fruit Picker which is not dissimilar to Mrs P’s homemade version except that it has those hooks to dislodge the apples into the catching bag and the pole is adjustable and can reach quite a height.
Now there is a point to this domestic gardening story. The picker was ordered on the web and as you can imagine, it arrived in a very long oblong box.
The courier who delivered it glanced at me and then at the box with a look that told me he was intrigued to know what on earth was in such an odd shaped parcel.
‘It’s the Olympics,’ I said ‘you know the BBC website they’ve set up to encourage people to get involved in sport.’
He looked at me nonplussed.
By now he was looking a little nervous and his hand shook a bit as he handed me the electronic gizmo to sign for the parcel.
‘Don’t worry,’ I said ‘it’s quite low, only about six foot high. She should get the hang of it in no time.’
And then he left, no doubt on his phone to the office warning them not to deliver any javelins, archery sets, BMX bikes or fencing equipment to our address.