Thursday, 29 November 2012

Some more Orchard

Big excitement today as our order for bare rooted fruit trees arrives from the excellent supplier Future Forests of Kealkil, Bantry, Co. Cork. We combined our order with that of Mentor Anne W to share the postage and the trees were delivered there; we collected them today. It being a funny, late season where the trees have stayed in leaf late into Autumn, these had to wait for delivery but that suited us as the orchard which these guys will supplement is within the sheep enclosure and, had they arrived earlier, I would have had to erect tree guards around each one. Now, with the sheep soon to depart, I can heel them in for a few days and then plant them without needing anti-sheep defences till next Summer.

This order, which cost us €180 was for 7 trees plus 25 raspberry canes and 10 asparagus crowns. The trees are 3 varieties of apple (and 'Irish Peach', an Egremont Russet and a Braeburn), a 'Sunburst' cherry, a 'Shropshire' damson, a 'Ludovic' Quince and a 'Czar' plum. The raspberries are 13 Autumn Bliss and 12 of the Summer fruiting variety 'Malling Jewel'. These trees will bring our orchard tree count up to 14, so we still have room for 6 trees in the 5 by 4 array. The asparagus will go into the raised bed which already had tiny, rather weak cheapie crowns from the Lidl "sick lame and lazy" racks. The raspberries will go into the raised beds of the allotment and a couple in the "Jam and Chutney Hedge" in the Kitchen Garden.

For the moment though, the ground is frozen and the sheep are still in the way, so the trees have been heeled into curver buckets and the raspberry canes into one of the other Kitchen Garden raised beds, just willy-nilly, any old how, clustered together just to keep the roots healthy and protected from frost till we can plant them all properly. Thank you very much, Anne, for your help in this one.

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