We began work on the new orchard in February after the pigs had turned over the soil. We marked out a grid with the trees 14 feet apart and we dug and prepared the planting holes by adding some organic matter in the form of well rotted horse manure. After planting we drove in hasel stakes from the coppice and made tree guards with rabbit wire.
The whole project took a couple of weeks to complete.We planted a mixture of eating and cooking apples as well as pears and a handful of plums.
By June the trees were well established with the three year old trees bearing a little fruit. by June the grass was waist height so we rigged up a patchwork of electric fencing to allow the sheep to eat the grass whilst keeping them away from the young trees. Henry the goat is banned from the orchard.We have planted 63 trees in total, 22 of them are three year old trees and the remainder are one year old whips. We have chosen traditional varieties such as Laxton's superb, Tydemans Late Orange and Ashmeads Kernel and it will be interesting to see which trees thrive in this location.
To see a list of the varieties planted and links to our suppliers please click on the apple