Orchard Project – April Newsletter

Bishopthorpe Community Orchard and Heritage project

This is a Heritage Lottery funded project which aims to highlight Bishopthorpe’s orchard heritage and create a new community orchard for the village. The project runs from 1 November 2018 to 31 October 2019.

If you have been to Ferry Lane playing field recently you may have noticed that a lot has changed on the community orchard site in the last few weeks! Following the successful litter picking and bramble cutting event at the end of January, Jonathan Short (Ainsty Landscapes) has very kindly dug the site over and rotovated it. Thank you to all the volunteers who came to our second community event and pulled out wheel barrow loads of bramble and nettle roots which had carpeted the area.  This summer it will be essential to keep on top of the weeds by regular cutting.  If you are able to help with this, especially if you have a ride-on mower, we would love to hear from you.

So much progress has been made, that BBC Radio York heard about the project and featured it as one of their secret locations on ‘Finders Keepers’ on Saturday 2nd March. If you missed the programme, it may still be available on the BBC website. It was clue number 4.

Fruit tree experts, Tony Chalcraft and Jane Thurlow, have now held 2 training events on fruit tree pruning in gardens in the village.  Both events were very popular and took place in contrasting conditions: the first in warm sunshine, the second in rain!  We had a go at tackling some old apple trees which had not been pruned for many years. Tony and Jane advised to first cut out the dead and diseased wood, then rubbing branches, and then branches crossing the middle of the tree.  The ultimate aim is an open centre to the tree which ‘a robin could fly through.’ There was much discussion, and although some pruning was done, they advised not doing too much in one year because of the risk of ‘shocking the tree’.  I think we can all say that, with our newly trained eyes, we now look at fruit trees in a different way! No more pruning events are planned, but if there is enough demand, we may be able to run another event in Bishopthorpe next winter.

Our research into the history of orchards in the village is continuing, and if you have any photos or memories of orchards from the ‘old days’ please do get in touch. We would also like to hear about the locations of any old fruit trees in the village.

For more information about the project, including the newsletter and forthcoming events, use the ‘orchard’ tag on www.bishopthorpe.net.  To contact the project please email bishorchard@yahoo.com or phone 07563 798408.

Orchard Project – March Newsletter

Bishopthorpe Community Orchard and Heritage project

This is a Heritage Lottery funded project which aims to highlight Bishopthorpe’s orchard heritage and create a new community orchard for the village. The project runs from 1 November 2018 to 31 October 2019.

At the end of January we made a big step forward in our plans to create a Community Orchard on derelict land on the edge of the Ferry Lane playing field. Over 40 people came along on a Saturday afternoon to help, over half of whom were children.  Particular thanks go to the 1st Bishopthorpe Scouts, White Rose Football Club and their families who all worked so hard.  We filled a skip with all the rubbish and made a big pile of rusty metal which went for recycling.  A huge metal goal post, which had lain embedded in the ground for many years, was pulled out in a real team effort! There was so much enthusiasm for the task, that all the brambles were cleared too, which means we don’t need to pay for a tractor and flail!  The next stage is to get the site levelled and reseeded with grasses and wildflowers this spring.

There is one more fruit tree pruning training event coming up on Sunday 3 March, 2pm to 4pm, led by fruit tree experts, Tony Chalcraft and Jane Thurlow. This will be held in a garden on Copmanthorpe Lane. There will be a brief indoor session followed by a demonstration of the basics of pruning, with the opportunity to have a go yourself. The event is free but booking is required as numbers are limited.

For more information about the project, including the newsletter and forthcoming events, use the ‘orchard’ tag on www.bishopthorpe.net.  To contact the project please email bishorchard@yahoo.com or phone 07563 798408.

Orchard Project – February Newsletter

Bishopthorpe Community Orchard and Heritage project

This is a Heritage Lottery funded project which aims to highlight Bishopthorpe’s orchard heritage and create a new community orchard for the village. The project runs from 1 November 2018 to 31 October 2019.

Have you ever wondered how to prune your fruit tree, but are worried about getting it wrong? Pruning helps improve tree health and promote better fruit production, but it can be daunting knowing where to start! Fruit tree experts, Tony Chalcraft and Jane Thurlow are here to help. They are running 2 practical training events in Bishopthorpe, the first in the Vicarage garden and the second in a garden on Copmanthorpe Lane. There will be a brief indoor session followed by a demonstration of the basics of pruning, with the opportunity to have a go yourself. These are sure to be informative and enjoyable events.  The events are free but booking is required as numbers are limited. The dates are: Saturday 16 February, 2pm to 4pm and Sunday 3 March, 2pm to 4pm (weather permitting).

Many thanks to all the volunteers who are helping clear rubbish from the new community orchard site on the edge of Ferry Lane playing field. The area is due to be cut with a tractor and flail in February. The work will be done before the bird nesting season starts, and a check will be made for any hibernating hedgehogs.

For more information about the project, including the newsletter and forthcoming events, use the ‘orchard’ tag on www.bishopthorpe.net.  To contact the project please email bishorchard@yahoo.com or phone 07563 798408.

Orchard Project – January Newsletter

Bishopthorpe Community Orchard and Heritage project

This is a Heritage Lottery funded project which aims to highlight Bishopthorpe’s orchard heritage and create a new community orchard for the village. The project runs from 1 November 2018 to 31 October 2019.

At the end of November, Tony Chalcraft and Jane Thurlow, York fruit tree experts, gave a very informative and well attended talk at Vernon House called ‘Know and Love your Fruit trees.’ We learnt that pruning is not essential but is good for increasing fruit production and reducing disease. We heard that the aim is a ‘goblet’ shape to the tree, and ‘lop and top’ should be avoided! We also had the opportunity to sample some delicious varieties of apples. For anyone who wants to learn how to prune their own trees, Tony and Jane will be running 2 hour practical training events in Bishopthorpe in February/March.

In January we are turning our attention to the proposed community orchard site on the edge of Ferry Lane playing field. The area is overgrown and rubbish needs removing before the brambles can be cut with a tractor and flail. We are holding a litter picking event there on Saturday 26 January from 2pm to 4pm. We have been promised help from Bishopthorpe Scouts and the White Rose Football Club, and additional adults and children will be welcome.  We will have litter pickers, bags, and a skip to fill. Just remember to bring gloves and stout shoes! If we have enough volunteers we can litter pick around the playing field, and clear the woodland of rubbish too!

Fruit tree surveys are continuing throughout the year so please let us know of any trees you would like us to survey.  We are particularly interested to know if any old fruit trees remain in The Coppice and The Orchard.

For more information about the project, including the newsletter and forthcoming events, use the ‘orchard’ tag on www.bishopthorpe.net.  To contact the project please email bishorchard@yahoo.com or phone 07563 798408.

Fruit Tree Pruning

Saturday 16 February, 2pm to 4pm (Church Lane) and Sunday 3 March, 2pm to 4pm (Copmanthorpe Lane)

Fruit tree experts Tony Chalcraft and Jane Thurlow will be leading these events in support of the Community Orchard project. Come along and find out how to improve the health and productivity of your fruit trees.

At each event there will be a brief indoor session followed by a demonstration of the basics of pruning, with the opportunity to have a go yourself. The events are free but please book as numbers are limited.

See the event poster for full details : Tree Pruning Event Poster

Orchard Project : Site Cleanup Starts

On Saturday 26 January we made a big step forward in our plans to create the Community Orchard.
Over 40 people came along to help clear up the derelict land on the edge of the Ferry Lane playing field. Over half of them were children, including twelve Bishopthorpe Scouts. There was so much enthusiasm for the task that all the brambles were cleared too, which means we don’t need to pay for a tractor and flail.
Fantastic effort!

Before:
The Orchard site before we started work
During:
Volunteers hard at work
After:
What a difference!
Rubbish:
This is what we removed.

 

Bishopthorpe Community Orchard and Heritage Project

A derelict piece of land on the edge of Ferry Lane is to be transformed into a community orchard for everyone to enjoy.

Bishopthorpe Parish Council has secured Heritage Lottery funding for this project, which is being run by local volunteers, but the project needs extra help from villagers to make it happen.

The project team has produced the first in a series of newsletters, which you can download here:  Newsletter 01_Nov 2018

The newsletter gives more information about the project, and suggests ways people can get involved and help it all come to fruition. As well as hoping for some practical help, the team are also keen to hear from people with memories of the old orchards and market gardens of Bishopthorpe, and from anyone with old fruit trees that might turn out to have an interesting history.

You can contact the project team by email to bishorchard@yahoo.com or phone Morwenna Christian on 07563 798408.

A series of events are planned to push the project forward, the first of these is Ask the Experts at Vernon House on Monday 26th November. You can view the flyer for this event here : Nov 26th event poster

More news will be published as the project moves on, so remember to check back here for all the details.

All items will be on the News pages, tagged with Orchard so you’ll be able to find related pages quickly.