I guess we have all done a bit of fruit picking in our time to earn some extra pennies, but have you ever thought about flower picking as a way of getting extra cash? Well this year, the cordial experts at Belvoir are hoping that their loyal locals in the Northampton and Lincolnshire areas can help them out by picking elderflowers and dropping them off at two designated spots. You do not need any kind of expertise, just as many black bin bags as you can fill and the desire to earn some extra money in a really fun way! It is at this time of year that all the lovely elderflowers are in bloom, and this is why Belvoir need as many bags full of the flowers as they can get. They are requesting that anyone can go out into the sunshine and pick them and in return they will pay £2 per kilo.
There will be two picking stations this year, the first one is at the main fruit farm in Lincolnshire which is Belvoir Fruit Farms, Belvoir, Grantham, Lincolnshire, NG13 OGN. The second picking station is situated at Castle Farm Yard in Rockingham. That address is Castle Farm Yard, Rockingham, LE16 8TG. So, if you live near either sites and fancy earning some extra money in a really lovely way, read on. You have to make sure that you pick only the beautiful frothy white flower heads as it is these that go to make the delicious cordial, so no stalks please. The really important part is delivering the blooms to the sites on the same day you pick them, because the flowers wilt quickly. If you’re delivering them to the Belvoir Fruit Farm in Lincolnshire, you will need to bring them along on Monday-Saturday between 3pm and 6.30pm. If you’re picking in Northamptonshire, start bringing your flowers from June 6th, Monday-Saturday between 4pm and 6pm. Remember, you must bring them on the same day that you have picked them! And by the way, all you’ll need is a bin bag to put your harvest in. If you are thinking of going elderflower picking then please respect the countryside code and ask permission from the land owner first.
At Belvoir Farms, they have been making cordial for generations as a way of preserving summer fruits to enjoy over the winter months. Cordials contain masses of pressed fresh fruits, freshly-picked flowers and cooked spices so they taste deliciously real and they dilute up to 1:10. They do not contain any artificial colours, flavourings or preservatives. At Belvoir Fruit Farms in Lincolnshire, there are already 90 acres of their very own organic elderflower plantations. That’s an awful lot of flowers to be picked during the harvest in June, but they are always happy for more flowers so that’s why they ask villagers to go out and pick elderflowers from the hedgerows. Last year, they were the only elderflower producer to use only English elderflowers. Once the harvest is in, the flowers are then infused by a lady called Phyllis Howitt, a former shepherdess who has been single-handedly making Belvoir cordials for over 20 years, in vats of lemon and sugar syrup.
If you want to know more about picking elderflowers this summer then visit the Belvoir site.