Tree of the week: ‘Every autumn, fruit thumps on to the lawn from our apple tree. I make chutney’

We have an apple tree in our garden. It was grown from a seedling that was given as a school prize more than 80 years ago to the brother of the woman we bought our house from.

We’ve been living here for 40 years. The tree is a constant in our lives – we see it from our windows and pass it when we arrive and leave the house. It makes me feel at home.

All our family – sons, daughters, grandchildren – and friends have climbed it.

Every autumn, large apples thump on to the lawn and flower beds. I use them to make chutney from a recipe in Elizabeth Craig’s cookery book, to give as presents and store in the cupboard well into summer.

During this strange time in lockdown, we’ve been spending more time watching how the tree comes to life. I love seeing the leaves catch the light, the colour of the blossom, and forget-me-nots pushing up through decomposing apple mulch. It never fails to make us feel good.

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