Generations of Edwards have grown apples and pears in Red Hill. 

They call Don Edwards The Apple Whisperer. What he doesn’t know about growing, grafting, pruning, feeding, picking and ripening pears and apples isn’t worth knowing. His family has been growing apples in the deep, rich red clay in Red Hill South on the Mornington Peninsula since the 1880s.   

Don farms the 50-hectare farm with his wife Jean, son Brendon, and daughter Wendy. In 1987, the orchard became organically certified with the National Association for Sustainable Agriculture Australia. The Edwards use organic fertiliser and employ a variety of measures to protect their crops from pests, including encouraging predator insects to keep pest species at bay. 

“Dad loves to sit quietly on his tractor in the orchard, listening for the wind in the blossoms and the buzz of the bees to make sure the flowers are being pollinated,” says Wendy. “He’s really connected to the land.” 

The Edwards concentrate their efforts on growing six varieties of apples: Granny Smith, Royal Gala, Fuji, Golden Delicious, Jazz and Pink Lady. They also grow three varieties of pears, namely Beurre Bosc, Packham and Josephine. The apples and pears are harvested from late summer to late autumn but are available all year round thanks to high-tech controlled-atmosphere cool rooms, and are always perfectly textured, aromatic and enticing, with the right balance of sweetness and tartness. In early summer, the Edwards pick some exceptionally good cherries, too.

Their produce is sold at the Melbourne Market, Epping; Market Organics, Queen Victoria Market; Boroondara Farmers’ Market; and directly from the farm. 

Products: Certified organic pears, apples and cherries

(03) 5989 2388