The Brewers’ Year – The Birds and the Beers
We don’t know if you’ve felt it over the last few days, but it’s blossom season and there’s lots of pollen floating around…*sneezes*
But, before you go cursing it, remember all the good it’s doing.
We recently launched our sister company, Rutland Cider Company, and this time of year pollen is vital to the production of both cider and beer, as nature takes its course and does the hard work for us.
Going back to cider, most fruit trees are self-incompatible, which means they can’t pollinate their own flowers. Cross-pollination is essential in ensuring the trees grow lots of fruit and is why we plant orchards and never just one or two fruit trees on their own.
Bees, Wasps and other insects are hard at work at this time of year, either pollinating or keeping the Greenflies at bay. You may see some apple trees which look like they’re wilting at the tips. That’s probably because the Greenfly are sucking the sap from the new growth, and Wasps and Ladybirds are key in ensuring you keep them under control without using pesticides, which can affect the quality of the fruit.
Our wheat based products are less dependent on insects and more the British weather. The wind pollinates wheats, barleys and grasses and the British Spring usually brings lots of rain to help them grow and ripen. However, this year we’re a bit short of rain *does a rain dance and asks the weather Gods not to dump it all over the bank holiday weekend*. We’ll be able to reap the benefits of nature’s hard work later this year for production of our honey, ciders, perries and real ales.
But until then, join us over the bank holiday weekend for our 7th Annual Sausage and Cider Festival and remember the be thankful for the birds and the beers.