In the beginning it looked like this…


On a very wet April day Pete came in with the digger and dug some trenches, these were liberally filled with well rotted manure from Gus down the road. It was a mess – sticky clay mud you could lose your welly in (and often did), manure, weeds and rocks everywhere. After a good few days digging, wheeling the barrow and spreading gravel and some much needed help from Tony and Mudita we managed to get the future orchard area flat(ish) relatively weed free and ready for posts and wires.

As April showers gave way to some May sunshine, our order of 200 trees and 200 soft fruits arrived along with our wwoofer, Veronique all the way from France, and my Mum – a temporary wwoofer for one week.

Over the next few weeks we will be stocking up the new Torrisdale pharmacy Orchard with 27 varieties of apple, dessert and cooking, including Pixie, Red Devil, Ribston Pippin and Bountiful, 4 types of pear, blackcurrants, redcurrants, whitecurrants, gooseberry, jostaberry (gooseberry x blackberry), blackberry, tayberry, raspberry, blueberry, cranberry, cowberry, plum and mulberry. Plenty of fruit for the future Farm Shop!

The apples are being trained along wires at a 45 degree angle, tricking the tree into thinking it’s a branch and producing loads of fruit – some of which will be heading straight for the cider press. The rest of the fruit will be available to buy in the future Farm Shop, as freshly picked local wholesome fruit or as jams, pies, compotes and as tasty cakes and treats. Watch this space!

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