The gardens at Pear Tree Cottage sit in a cider apple orchard in the green and rolling countryside of Worcestershire, England. It enjoys a sunny south westerly aspect with sweeping views across to Martley Hillside, Woodbury & Abberley clock tower. The Teme Valley lies just over the hill and, not far away, is the Herefordshire border. Although our climate is temperate, our seasons are often uncertain and always a challenge to a gardener!

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28 November 2012

Marmalade Mission

The Ingredients

£2.50 Lemon Tree

Decanting the marmalade.
When I bought a little lemon tree from Birmingham Botanical Gardens for £2.50 about 5 years ago, I could never have imagined picking crops of lemons in November amid the delicious scent of its flowers.  The challenge was to make diabetic marmalade with them.  Mission on!  It's not a cheap option using Xylitol instead of sugar in fact, it cost around £24 - gulp!  Getting it to set wasn't easy either and I was forced to resort to the use of Certo.  However, the results were well worthwhile.  It's quite delicious and you don't have to be diabetic to enjoy this!   3lbs of lemons made 11 jars - that's a lot of breakfasts!

The lemon tree spends its summers out on the terrace and last winter; the greenhouse.  By spring it was covered in sooty mould and just about every infestation you could think of.  I hosed it off, washing each leaf individually back in April.  Despite a summer that never was, it was covered in fruit which slowly ripened.  Chris and Ian lifted it into the conservatory last month and the lovely thing about citrus is the fact that they bear fruit and flowers simultaneously and the conservatory is now full of fragrance and the cupboard full of marmalade!



Another 10 jars and plenty left for G&T's!




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