Prior to planting the orchard, various designs were discussed amongst the group in conjunction with the arboreal officer at Mansfield District Council (MDC). We decided to go for an orchard that would provide an assortment of genetically strong varieties of different species, such as apples, pears, plums, damsons, mulberries, medlars, cherries and cob nuts. When a planting scheme had been agreed, MDC marked out the orchard for us.
Over the course of about a week in November 2016, with assistance from MDC (who generously provided a JCB to dig the majority of the holes) and students from Farmilo Primary School, local volunteers planted 71 fruit trees and a variety of hedgerow plants.
Without the JCB, this would have been a monumental task – digging 71 holes 2′ x 2′ x 2′, with as little as only 6″ of topsoil by the fence. We are very grateful for the help of MDC with this.
Farmilo Students managed to plant nearly half of the trees in one morning alone! Thank you to all students who planted trees and to staff for assisting us with this.
Each of the fruit trees was given a post with an information plaque describing the variety, its possible uses and when to harvest.
Having received a pack of 105 hedgerow trees courtesy of The Woodland Trust, we set about planting them along the fence, again working alongside pupils from Farmilo Primary.
At the same time as hedgerow planting, pupils were engaged in planting 6000 crocus and daffodil bulbs which had been generously given by MDC’s Parks and Outdoor Spaces department.
We are grateful to all those who helped us to achieve this first phase of the orchard’s development including local and county councillors, MDC and the following organisations and companies: