Fresh Pickings: Handpicked Apples at Leckford Estate

18 Aug 2022

Having grown apples on the farm for over 70 years and across 14 hectares of land, the Waitrose & Partners fruit farm produces the most exquisite apples which are handpicked from August through to October. The beautiful Longstock Park farm shop stocks a range of our seasonal apples for you to enjoy, from Quince to Crab Apples.

Our Pickers

Our apple picking experts work tirelessly to bring you the best the UK has to offer. The Waitrose & Partners fruit farm is managed by our Partner Colin, who has worked diligently on the estate for over 25 years. With the help of our seasonal pickers, this team ensures our delectable apples get the attention they deserve. Our fruit is only sold in season and at its freshest, therefore you can find our apples at the Leckford farm shop between September and November, subject to availability.

Core Inspiration 

Throughout the season, we grow a range of apples there is always something to take your fancy. We've included some of Leckford’s own recipes below to inspire your cooking with our apples.

Picked in mid-August, our Bramley apples work well for cider due to their acidity but are equally enjoyable in a warming crumble or comforting apple pie. Why not try making a scrumptious apple crumble here?  

As we stroll into September, Cox apples come into their own. They work well for both cooking and for eating raw, making this adaptable fruit a firm favourite. Also working incredibly well as a cider, the Cox apple knows no bounds. Why not try incorporating our Leckford Estate cider into one of Waitrose’s recipes this weekend?

Then with October just around the bend, it’s the prime season for the classic Golden Delicious apples. These are great for crisps, crumbles, tarts, and breads but also for preserves and sauces. The Golden Delicious really is a versatile apple. Also, another October special, Quince apples are notorious for their tough flesh and sour flavour so they are best eaten cooked; after which, they make a great puree, roasted addition, or you can even try them baked or grilled. Last but not least, we have our classic Jazz apples which are nice and crisp, perfect for eating straight out of your hand, and great for children’s lunchboxes.

Our Partners

Our Partners can volunteer to help us in what is one of our busy periods, picking the apples for Leckford apple juice and Leckford cider over a 2-week period at the end of September. As a co-owned business, this is something that Partners do across the business, in order to help during peak periods. This year, Partners can join us in the vineyard to help pick the grapes for our Leckford sparkling wine. It's a great team effort that helps us bring in the fruit harvest.

Longstock Farm Shop Sustainability Practices 

Working sustainably and with the seasons has always been at the forefront of our minds here at Leckford Estate. Shopping local, but also eating seasonal produce, is the best way to help preserve our limited-edition planet. Come and take a look around our farm shop to see our wide range of constantly changing seasonal produce for yourself.

While eating apples are only available seasonally, our apple juice is sold year-round. Don’t worry, nothing goes to waste here – our wonky apples are used to create this mouth-watering beverage.  

Visit Our Farm Shop & Cafe

Take a look around our Longstock Park Farm Shop to stock up on a range of apple goods. While you’re there, why not enjoy a relaxing break and take in the views of our stunning plant nursery and walled garden at the Longstock Park Café?


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