A local grower with plant hunter grandparents, an RHS medal and a history in horticulture, visited the field and created a thoughtful planting plan. It incorporates a variety of fruit trees which we can enjoy for generations to come and will provide much needed shade and shelter for wildlife. On his second visit we plotted out the orchard using people. The planting plan, which has been created by a specialist in edibles and wildflowers, shows a mulberry tree in the middle of the meandering orchard with 3 entrances cleverly created by cordon apple and pear trees. Within the area there are a variety of different fruit and nut trees which will provide an even spread of blossom in spring and the trees will fruit this year. The orchard will be planted on the nearside of the field, opposite the allotments and will have seating, mown pathways, cowslips and we hope, the re-emergence of pre-existing species which we hope will return now it is not being mown. You can already see the meadow buttercups, red clover, ladies smock and cowslips scattered across the field.
We are still optimistic that the orchard will be planted this spring, as the trees are already reserved, but the way this is done will need consideration.
With the help of our village wildlife experts, local residents and some advice from a living landscapes specialist, we will hopefully see an increase in butterflies, amphibians, hedgehogs, birds and other creatures reported to live right here in Gaydon! We’d like to get the community involved in planting and creating these habitat enhancements.
The Planting Plan and Trees
The below picture shows how a cordon trained apple and pears grow
The other fruit trees will be on an array of rootstocks for their position in plan or will be bush or half standard, half standard is a tree with a clear stem. Rootstock examples:
List of Fruit Trees and Rootstocks
Scrumptious Cordon M9 Rootstock Height and Spread 2m x 1m Columnar Growing
Description: Scrumptious is an apple that is something very special. The most popular apple, self-fertile, tasty and easy to grow. Named for its wonderful complexity of flavours it has been carefully bred and selected specifically for our garden conditions. Scrumptious is a mid-season variety suitable for planting in all areas of the UK. It is also frost hardy when in flower, thin skinned for children and can be eaten straight from the tree at any time during September. The fruit will naturally stay on the tree without falling. When tasted by apple lovers, descriptions include: fragrant and honeyed, liquorice and wine, a bunch of cherries, fresh, aromatic, soft and delicate, crisp and sweet.
Rosette Cordon M9 Rootstock Height and Spread 2m x 1m Columnar Growing
Description: Rosette is a new early dessert apple. A lovely bright red apple with an unusual pink speckled ‘rosette’ pattern that penetrates deep into the flesh. The best flavoured pink fleshed apple available, light and sweet flavour with a hint of summer berries. Delicious eaten fresh and produces an attractive tasty apple juice! The tree is compact in habit which makes it ideal for the smallest of gardens. Very heavy cropping and is also easy to grow.
James Grieve Cordon M9 Rootstock Height and Spread 2m x 1m Columnar Growing
Description: James Grieve is a well-known, well flavoured early dessert apple. Red flush stripes over pale green with a creamy white, juicy, rather soft flesh. Excellent refreshing flavour and a reliable cropper. A deservedly popular apple which is grown commercially in the UK, usually as a pollinator for Cox. Can be used for eating, juicing and cooking, keeps its shape when cooked and is known to be one of the best apples to accompany a cheese board.
Cox M26 Rootstock Height and Spread 2.2m to 3m
Description: Cox Self Fertile is a self-fertile form of Cox’s Orange Pippin. Heavy, late crop of the best eating apple in the world. The fruit is orange over greenish-yellow with deep cream flesh that has sweet, aromatic flavour and is juicy and crisp. Best when it's picked and eaten straight from the tree or can be made into home-pressed apple juice. Good variety for growing in northern areas of the UK. Striking pinkish-white clusters of blossom during the spring. A highly recommended variety for less than ideal Cox areas!
Eden M27 Rootstock Dwarf Height and spread 1.5m to 2m
Description: Apple Eden is a new dual-purpose, non-browning apple. A delicious, crisp, sweet and aromatic flavour, similar to the popular apple Spartan. Behaves like Bramley when cooked, producing a snow white puree requiring no added sugar. This variety is also excellent for juicing!
Tickled Pink M27 Rootstock Dwarf Height and spread 1.5m to 2m
Description Tickled Pink is a new dual-purpose apple variety. A dynamic full red fleshed variety with beautiful red flowers in spring. The fruit is delicious when eaten straight from the tree, bringing out its juicy and pleasant flavour! Also an excellent cooker that keeps its shape and flavour when cooked. Their pink flesh looks stunning in apple desserts, and produces a bright pink juice.
Onward Cordon Height and Spread 2m x 1m Columnar Growing
Description: Onward is a new pear of excellent quality, quite resistant to spring frosts. The fruit is medium sized, light green in colour that changes to yellow, some have a pinkish flush and others a heavy russet. Creamy white flesh has a sweet rich and juicy flavour. A high quality and reliable cropper.
Conference Cordon Height and Spread 2m x 1m Columnar
Description: Conference is one of the most consistent varieties and a firm garden favourite with good self-fertility. Heavy crops of medium sized yellowish-green fruits with brown russet over areas, occasionally pink flushed on chalk soil. Flesh is pale yellow with a slight pinkish tinge towards the core. Sweet and juicy, melting with a pleasant pear flavour
Concorde Cordon Height and Spread 2m x 1m Columnar
Description: Concorde is recognised as one of the best varieties for organic growing. Produces medium to large fruits, pale green turning yellow in colour with some patches of gold or brown russet. Pale yellow flesh is sweet and juicy, melting and buttery with a pleasant mild flavour. The tree itself is very compact so makes the perfect tree for small spaces and has beautiful clusters of white blossom in the spring. Also one on a dwarf rootstock as to plan
Comice Rootstock QE Dwarf Height and Spread 2.5m
Description: Doyenne du Comice is a superb quality pear. Medium-large, pale green fruits changing to yellow, some fruits have a red flush. Pale yellow flesh has rich juicy flavours. Recognised for superb eating quality but needs a good pollination partner, see below.
Victoria Rootstock St Julian A 3mtr Height and spread
Description: Victoria is the most popular plum variety in the world. Produces heavy crops of large, oval-shaped bright red fruits that have darker red dots and are covered in medium, light blue bloom. The flesh is dark yellow with some streaks of red, moderately juicy and sweet, flavour fair. Perfect for eating fresh when they're picked ripe from the tree or can also be cooked into jams and desserts
Avalon Rootstock vva1 2.5m Height and Spread
Description: Avalon is one of the finest quality dessert plums that produces large, round-oval shaped, golden flushed red coloured fruits. Flesh is yellow, moderately juicy, fairly sweet and of good flavour. The stone separates cleanly from the flesh, fairly freestone. Best when eaten straight from the tree but also makes a delicious jam and bakes well into puddings when they're pale red, slightly under-ripe.
Yellow Pershore Rootstock St Julian A 3mtr Height and spread
Description: Yellow Pershore, also known as the fondly named ‘Yellow Egg Plum’ is a traditional, old fashioned cooking variety. Heavy and reliable crops of large, yellow fruits that have yellow juicy flesh; sweet, sharp and delicious. Perfect for cooking into desserts as well as being the ideal bottling plum. Also tasty when picked and eaten straight from the tree, once it's fully ripe. The white blossom appears in the spring followed by dark green foliage, adding an attractive feature to the garden. An easy grower as it has good disease resistance and is very hardy so can be planted in any area of the UK, ideal for beginners!
Summer Sun Root Stock Colt Height 3.5m to 4.5m
Description: Summer Sun is a very hardy variety and produces crops even in unfavourable areas. A good bushy shape makes the tree easy to manage. Fruits are red to dark red, firm and crunchy and have an exquisite flavour. Sets fair crops on its own, but more prolific if pollinated by any other self-fertile variety.
Stella Root Stock Gisela 5 Height 2.5m to 3m
Description: Stella was the first self-fertile sweet cherry to appear that set a standard for fruits which are sweet and juicy to taste. An excellent pollinator for other cherries. The best known dessert cherry in the UK and one you will most likely find on your local supermarket shelf!
Shropshire Prune Root Stock Vva1 Height 2.5m
Description: Shropshire Prune, also known as the 'Greengage of Damson' is the Native of the West Midlands. A small hedgerow damson, very reliable cropper with intense flavour, delicious cooked into puddings, jams and for gin! Dark blue in colour, firm sugary flesh. Very similar to the damson variety 'Westmorland'.
Portugal Root Stock QA Height 3m to 3.5m
Description: Portugal is an early ripening variety of high quality for cooking and preserving. Although not quite as hardy as others, it produces heavy and reliable crops of greenish-yellow fruits that have a soft texture and mild flavours. Particularly good for making Quince marmalade and Quince Jelly. The flesh turns a pink colour when it's cooked. Beautiful clusters of light pink blossoms in the spring followed by greenish silver coated leaves.
Ruby Root Stock St Julian A Height 3m to 3.5m
Description: Ruby is the largest fruit of the Mirabelle’s recorded. The fruit has exceptionally sweet taste; peach-like flavours and dark red flesh. The tree is unusually upright in habit in comparison to the wide spreading bushy habit of most varieties.
Morus Pendula Top Worked 1m25
Description: A small weeping tree with steeply falling branches. Large, heart-shaped leaves are glossy dark green, turning yellow in autumn. Small edible white fruits turn reddish-pink.