Scything courses at Longney, 11th May and 15th June.

Keep fit. Cut grass in an environmentally friendly way. The Trust will be running two all-day scything courses at Longney in 2024, on Saturday 11th May and on Saturday 15th June.

The courses will be run by Nicole Clough, a dedicated environmentalist who has spent much of her working life in the wildlife and conservation movements. The course will introduce attendees on how to use and look after an Austrian scythe, is suitable for complete beginners and also for those who may already have some experience but feel that scything could be working better for them.

– Introduction and familiarisation
– Setting up an Austrian scythe
– Movement and technique
– Mowing practice (there is usually an abundance of grass and nettles at Longney!)
– Sharpening in the field
– Maintenance and peening the blade

Space is limited to 6 attendees per course. The cost – partially subsidised by the Trust and thanks to a donation from Martin Hayes – is £50 per person for members (and £65 for non-members).

If you’d like to attend then please get in touch with David Lindgren David.lindgren@glosorchards.org or Martin Hayes Martin.hayes@glosorchards.org

Orchard Blossom Day Webinars 14th and 21st February

News about Orchard Blossom Day Webinars run by Orchard Network:

We are contacting you as a manager of a publicly accessible orchard, community orchard, or collection in the hope that you will be thinking about holding an Orchard Blossom event this year. 2024 will mark the third Orchard Blossom Day. Last year saw more than fifty sites hold events in the UK alone, and this year we hope to see over one hundred. The Orchard Network is promoting the Day alongside the National Trust and European Orchard Day throughout the European mainland.

Whether you have plans already or are just interested in knowing more, we would like to invite you to join us online for a short webinar to help inspire your event, share your ideas, pick up tips, and publicise events locally and online.

We will cover the following subjects:

1. What is Orchard Blossom Day?

4. Why celebrate and promote orchard blossom?

5. Where and when to have an event – In an orchard, or as part of other events throughout springtime?

6. What activities could you include? See our Publicity Pack and Activities ideas on www.orchardnetwork.org.uk.

7. Add your event to the map

8. Document the Day – take photos and video, use social media to best effect.

8. Q&A – any questions welcome in the chat function or asked at the end.

Steve Oram and the Orchard Network team.

The webinars will be held on:

Wednesday 14th February 14:00 and Wednesday 21st February 18:00

For joining details contact Orchard Network: https://www.orchardnetwork.org.uk/contact

Diary dates for 2024 – pruning workshops and other events

Saturday 13th January, from 10:00 Pruning workshop at Longney

Saturday 10th February, from 10:00 Pruning workshop at Longney

Saturday 9th March, from 10:00 Pruning workshop at Hartpury

Saturday 13th April:  Location and activity to be confirmed

Saturday 11th May:  Location and activity to be confirmed

Saturday 6th June;  Location and activity to be confirmed

We levy a small fee of £5 for the pruning workshops from our supporters; the sessions are also open to the general public for a fee of £25.

If you’d like to sign up to a pruning workshop then please email martin.hayes@glosorchards.org and treasurer@glosorchards.org

Longney Workshops throughout 2023

GOT orchardist Martin Hayes is running a series of workshops at GOT’s lovely Longney Orchard, south of Gloucester.

Date will be (many not yet confirmed):

  • Friday Feb 17th Pruning, mature apple trees (10:00 to 15:00)
  • Wednesday Mar 22nd Pruning, young apple & pear trees (10:00 to 15:00)
  • Wednesday Apr 12th Pruning, young apple & pear trees (10:00 to 15:00)
  • Wednesday 10th May Pruning, mature plum trees (10:00 to 15:00)
  • Wednesday 14th June Pruning, young plum trees (10:00 to 15:00)
  • July, date tbc General maintenance
  • Aug, date tbc General maintenance
  • Aug, date tbc Pick your own plums
  • Sept, date tbc Pick your own plums (and apples, if any are ripe)
  • Oct, date tbc Fruit picking for Trust Juice
We are hoping that a regular work-party will be able to help with general maintenance, but no commitment if you just want to attend a pruning workshop.
There is a barn (with interpretation signage), chairs, composting loo and running cold water. Have your lunch in the barn!
Martin is very knowledgeable; so much to learn/share. He will go through health and safety with you. He is first aid trained and we have a first aid kit in the store. The ground is uneven, there are some brambles and low hanging branches.
Tools will be provided, but do bring your own saws, secateurs and gloves if you can. Please bring own refreshments and appropriate footwear and weather attire.
No dogs please; there are sheep and please keep gates closed.
No vehicular access, so please park at or near the white railings on the road, being mindful of neighbours.
If anyone is able to take a couple of photos on the day (if no one objects) for the GOT website, please let us know, thank you via info@glosorchards.org
First orchard is Long Tyning (long and thin) then Bollow. Also on site are Middle & Lower Orchards which have been planted up with heritage apple and plum trees of regional/national importance.
Please book (essential) via info@glosorchards.org and on the day please bring emergency contact details for Martin.
£5 for GOT members for just the workshops (and £20 for non members, which includes a year’s membership).
You can pay through the Donate button on the GOT website at https://glosorchards.org/home/join-us-got-membership/
(non members can also join on that page).

Longney Workshop News

The first of our planned monthly workshops at Longney Orchard took place on 18th January.

A small team of energetic (and young) people pruned about 8 to 10 trees at the far end of the Long Tyning part of the orchard.

The prunings have been gathered into piles, but some limbs are rather big for manhandling so there are several piles of wood.

These will be tackled and sorted, and tidying up pruned wood at a later date.

More Longney workshops are planned – details will be posted on the website.

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Thornbury Orchard Group Work Party 4th Jan 2023

Wednesday 4 January 2023 at 9.30am at the Orchard.

The Orchard is in the valley between Swallow Park and Finch Close; nearest post code is BS35 1LT.

There will be another event on Wednesday 18 January 2023 between 10:45am and 11:45am at the Orchard.

For more details contact the orchard via the website at https://www.sustainablethornbury.org/orchard/index.php?mylink=orchardcontactus

Pruning workshop at GOT’s Longney Orchard 18th January 2023

For GOT Members only:
Orchardist Martin Hayes is running a pruning workshop at GOT’s Longney Orchard on this coming Wednesday 18th January between 10am and 3pm.
Tools will be provided, but do bring your own saws, secateurs and gloves if you can.
Please bring own refreshments and appropriate footwear and weather attire.
The track is very muddy but the orchards are lovely and we’ve been blessed with fieldfares feasting on fallen fruit.
No dogs please; there are sheep and please keep gates closed.
No vehicular access, so please park at or near the white railings on the road, being mindful of neighbours.
No charge but GOT members only – (you can join at https://glosorchards.org/home/join-us-got-membership/)
There is a barn (with interpretation signage), chairs, composting loo and running cold water. Have your lunch in the barn!
Martin is very knowledgeable; so much to learn/share.
He will go through health and safety with you. He is first aid trained and we have a first aid kit in the store.
The ground is uneven, there are some brambles and low hanging branches. The river Severn is fenced off.
Please leave prunings in designated piles.
If anyone is able to take a couple of photos on the day (if no one objects) for the GOT website and newsletter, please let me know, thank you!
First orchard is Long Tyning (long and thin) then Bollow. Also on site are Middle & Lower Orchards which have been planted up with heritage apple and plum trees of regional/national importance.
Please book through Martin on 07900 985679 or martin.hayes9@yahoo.com
and on the day please bring emergency contact details.  2022/12/21 at 12:26

Orchard Revival pruning workshop Friday 13th January

Come help look after traditional orchards across Gloucestershire.
This month Orchard Revival will be holding pruning workshops at Halmore and North Nibley.
Friday 13th January – Halmore. Led by Tim Andrews restoring old apple trees that needs lots of love and attention. Supported by CPRE Gloucestershire, The Ernest Cook Trust and Severn Trent
Tuesday 17th January – North Nibley. Led by orchardist Martin Hayes (The Apple Man Can). Formative pruning of over 350 young apple trees. Perfect for those that want to learn how to prune trees they have recently planted in their own gardens.
Contact Tim Andrews via Orchard Revival (facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/OrchardRevivalCider, website here: Orchard Revival for more details.

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

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