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Bramford Community Orchard

25 June 2021

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Community Orchard is on its way:

At the June meeting, Bramford Parish Council approved the plans for a community orchard on the land between the allotments and the 'old nursery' development to the west of Bramford Road.

In consultation with Paul Read of Suffolk Traditional Orchards Group we will be sourcing and planting an orchard of 38 trees. This doesn’t sound a lot, but these will grow to be big trees that when mature will each produce bucket-loads of fruit with minimal effort; apples, pears, plums, cherries, hazel-nuts etc. We aim not only to produce fruit for anyone who wants it but also to increase diversity, attract animals and (in the fullness of time) provide a quiet place for villagers to sit and enjoy the view. The trees will be mostly selected to grow strongly in the grass that is already there so that the orchard will need little input in the way of feeding or maintenance apart from a very occasional pruning and mowing the grass in a way that will encourage more wildflowers, more insects and especially more bees.

What we really want now are ideas. For instance we could do with input for when we choose the trees. What are your favourite orchard fruits, do you really like quinces and medlars? Maybe there’s have a really old local apple in your back garden that our tree warden could graft onto a new rootstock and keep it going for many more years in our own orchard?

In late August we will get a list of the different trees that Suffolk Traditional Orchards can supply and then the fun starts with choosing which varieties will be best for eating, which have the nicest flowers etc etc. When we have ordered and the trees arrive (in the winter) we will announce a planting day that anyone and everyone can come along to help or just watch. In the fullness of time when we finally get to pick some fruit we could have a village celebration and take baskets of apples to people in the village who can’t get out anymore. There are loads of ideas, but the main thing is we will have a vibrant, productive, healthy orchard full of birds and bees, in the middle of the village for the first time in many years. Maybe we can have apple blossom day in the spring?? Who knows?

Please get in touch; bramfordparishcouncil@btinternet.com with any ideas or comments.

Apple Trees