Wassail at Horfield Community Orchard, 14th Jan 2023

Cidering the apple tree roots – Wassail 2021

Wassail at Horfield Organic Community Orchard, Bristol on Saturday 14 January, 2-4pm

  • Mulled juice & home made cakes for sale
  • Bring clouties & shiny things to dress the trees

To find the orchard (nearest postcode BS7 8JP) – Walk down the lane beside 22 Kings Drive (between Bishop Road & Kellaway Avenue), turn left and it’s the first gate on the right.

OR

Take the lane beside 134 Longmead Avenue (BS7 8QQ) until you come to the last gate on the left.

Contact HOCO c/o the website to sign up for up-to-date information: www.community-orchard.org.uk

Phone: 0117 373 1587

Orchard Learning Programme 2023 at Horfield Organic Community Orchard

Pruning in winter

Horfield Organic Community Orchard (HOCO) is celebrating 25 years as a community and fruit-growing project. Since 1998 hundreds of volunteer members have cared for nearly a hundred fruiting trees. HOCO is also raising an urban orchard for community education and horticultural experimentation. The Orchard Learning Programme, developed in 2018, is a hands-on and holistic adventure in community orcharding that guides participants over a growing season at HOCO.

The 9-month course (see dates summary below) is designed to deepen the knowledge and sharpen the skills of those involved in the close care of fruit trees. It is ideal for growers with previous fruit growing experience, and highly recommended for anyone starting up, or involved with, an orchard. Participants work with less-than-perfect trees and learn by doing.

Programme content and structure are always evolving – driven by climate chaos, and shaped by the experiences and needs of participants. The blend of group learning days and one-to-one sessions was a great success when introduced last year. All sessions take place outdoors in the example-rich Horfield Organic Community Orchard. They are led by Shannon Smith – an experienced community orchard grower and educator.

Successful applicants are partnered with a fruit tree – their Tree Buddy – for the year. They join with other HOCO members to help organise orchard working meetings and community events.

Places are limited. Deadline for applications is Sunday 29 January 2023.

More information on the HOCO website: www.community-orchard.org.uk

Longney Orchard News

This picture, taken by Ann, shows Stuart Smith after the planting work

Ann Smith writes:

Today we planted more Gloucestershire plum trees at GOT’s Longney Orchard and replaced one or two apple trees. The soil is good quality and drains well.

Sheep continue to graze the orchards. The flocks of fieldfares and redwings were enjoying the fallen apples.

A tattered red admiral butterfly warmed itself on the barn brickwork in full sun on this mild November day. It was rather tattered, weary from a long year chased by birds or perhaps it was tipsy from the fermented fruit! Will it survive the winter? They are known to enter a dormant state and the barn would certainly provide shelter.

The red admiral picture (right) and the fieldfare pictures below were taken by John Fletcher, who is a regular birdwatcher at Longney.

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BBC feature on local orchards

The BBC news website featured traditional orchards last week, timed to coincide with Apple Day.

It highlighted the work being carried out to conserve orchards, and traditional varieties, locally and regionally in Somerset and Gloucestershire  The article also highlighted the work of PTES and the Orchard Network nationally.

For Gloucestershire both GOT and the Wildlife Trust were mentioned, discussing local sites and the work being done to find and conserve local varieties.

For the full article click here:  https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-somerset-63298873

Big Apple Harvestime 8th and 9th October 2022

Big Apple, the orchard association for the Much Marcle area, is holding its annual Harvestime weekend on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th October.

Nine venues are ready to welcome visitors to Much Marcle over the two days.

The venues have plenty to offer visitors. There will be opportunities to enjoy the local orchards, see, hear and smell cider and perry being made and taste and buy many different varieties of apples, local ciders, perries and apple juices.

Full details at https://www.bigapple.org.uk/harvestime2022/

Apple Day at Fishponds Community Orchard 9th October 2022

Fishponds Community Orchard are holding their Apple day on 9th October at Thingwall Park Allotments.

From midday until 5pm.

There will be juicing, cider, other produce plus woodturning, live music and story-telling.

Details from fishpondsorchard@gmail.com or their facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/FishpondsOrchard/

 

Rockness Orchard/Stan’s Patch Apple Day, 9th October

Apple Day at our Rockness Orchard  near Nailsworth, will be on Sunday 9th October in the afternoon. There is a wonderful amount of fruit.

The orchard has now been scythed and cleared. Particular summer profusion on the banks of betony, field scabious, St

Johns wort and wild marjoram. We also have newts in our little pond.

 

Great excitement, as where the huge ash was felled, plums have shot up bearing wonderful delicious fruit. What a gift.

If anyone can identify from a photograph, we would be thrilled.

Early fruit (in profusion) has gone to the Long Table in Stroud to be redistributed and shared.

 

More information from Fiona Valentine fionav@phonecoop.coop

Tim Andrews on BBC Gardeners World, tomorrow, Friday 30th September 2022

An update on the previous news about this – the broadcast is due tomorrow, Friday 30th, at 20.00.

Details on the BBC website here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m001clnc

Tim Andrews, from Orchard Revival in North Nibley says:

Watch us talk about the work we do restoring traditional orchards in Gloucestershire on BBC Gardeners World. Over the last 50 years Gloucestershire has lost over 75% of these amazing habitats. Here at Orchard Revival we prune and re-plant these traditional orchards and more importantly share orchard skills so others can do it too.

The segment was filmed in the beautiful Pocketts Orchard, in Whitminster where we help lead orchard restoration for the Cotswold Canals Connected project and the Gloucestreshire Wildlife Trust as part of the Stroudwater canal restoration.

If you miss us on TV you’ll be able to hear us on BBC Gloucestershire with Kate Clark on Sunday 2nd October from 10am. Kate and I will be having a good chat about all things orchards, along with my work with the Gloucestershire Orchard Trust, Cotswold Canals Connected, the Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust, CPRE Gloucestershire and The Ernest Cook Trust.

 

Pilley Bridge Nature Reserve Apple Day, 16th October

Apple Day at Pilley Bridge Nature Reserve in Leckhampton, Cheltenham. Sunday 16th October 2022.

Timings at present are 2.30-4pm; they may alter slightly so visitors should check latest updates.

There will be children’s activities including apple games, scavenger hunt and creative art, our mini ‘railway rides’ and refreshments for sale.

We hope there will still be enough apples available after this summer’s weather challenges!

Details from Hazel Bolton, Group coordinator for PBNR hazelbolton@googlemail.com

Days Cottage Orchard & Rural Skills Centre Apple Afternoon 16th October

Dave Kaspar identifying apples. Small number of representative samples only please!

This year’s apple celebrations at Days Cottage will be on Sunday 16 October 2022, 1-4pm.

Apple Day Afternoon with Dave Kaspar and Helen Brent-Smith, www.dayscottage.co.uk Upton Lane, Brookthorpe, GL4 0UT.

Mulled apple juice, lovely apple and pear themed cakes, family event, music, heritage fruit to try and buy, rare trees for sale. Buy juice, cider and perry from unsprayed fruit. Now is a chance to chat to Dave and Helen about your orchard/fruit questions. But they do get busy!

Browse their mature and young orchards, bring a picnic. Walk around the Museum Orchard of rare Gloucestershire varieties. Maps available (please return). Signage will be out.

Bring a few representative samples for identification and a small amount (two carrier bags) for juicing at the farm.  Small charge for the latter.  Only a small number of representative samples please!

One way system in operation. Yurt and roundhouse. Forest garden to explore.

They also run a rolling programme of Pruning, Grafting and Bud-Grafting workshops here in  winter and summer. These will be advertised on the Days Cottage and GOT websites.

 

Dave Kaspar identifying apples at his and Helen’s Days Cottage Apple Afternoon in October.

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