Yesterday we had our session learning from the very knowledgeable and helpful Orchard Bob. We were shown how to prune and care for our apple trees and we now feel we know enough to take on their management confidently in future.
Bob provided a report with recommendations for the future, so we have a clear plan to work to.
Dan from Histon and Impington Community Orchard Project (HICOP) joined us to brush up on his skills, and we hope to collaborate with HICOP for future events.
As well as pruning the trees so that they grow into the right shape, we also removed rubber straps which were no longer needed and in some cases were causing problems for the trees.
We were able to do a bit of tree guard recycling to add guards to the apple trees to further protect them from strimmer damage, when the wildflowers and grass around them are cut.
It was great to look back at the Orchard and see the trees looking like they were being well cared for. Lichens have already colonised the trees, and hopefully the area will be really good for wildlife in a few years time.
All cuttings were put in piles in the Wildlife Area to provide habitat for invertebrates.
We also removed seedlings from the Balancing Pond area to reduce scrub vegetation there, opening up basking sites for reptiles and invertebrates.
With many thanks to Bob and Dan, we enjoyed working with you 🙂