Have you ever wondered what variety that pear tree in your back garden is? Or why the apples on your neighbour’s tree never get picked?
This community orchard project aims to do four key things:
• Create a map of all the ‘top’ fruit trees (like apples, pears, peaches but not bushes like blackcurrants) currently growing in Farnham
• Hold community ‘fruit-based’ events such as harvesting, fruit identification days (you may have a ‘lost’ variety growing in your garden!), community juicing, educational trails, and apple days.
• Encourage the planting of fruit trees in gardens and public places, to be shared by the community.
• Create a community orchard by restoring an old orchard or by replanting a new one.
Projects like this one are already taking off across the country (see links below).
They are important and people enjoy them because they:
> Are Educational
The community orchard project will offer a range of educational opportunities, courses and events. It aims to encourage healthy eating by raising awareness, and will help adults and children to learn about the origins of their food.
> Encourage Biodiversity
Orchards are also important habitats for wildlife. In 2007 orchards were designated a Priority UK Biodiversity Habitat by the UK Government.
What we are doing now:
The first stage of the project will map the top fruit trees already growing in Farnham, recording where they are and what variety they are. “Top fruit trees” means apples, pears, peaches, plums, cherries, nuts etc.
How can I get involved?
Whether you own a single tree or an entire orchard we would love to hear from you. We’d also love to hear from you if you don’t own any trees at all but would like to get involved! Simply email Paula Burgess at farnham [dot] orchards [at] googlemail [dot] com, or call us via the Contact page.
Other Orchard related Links:
If you would like to find out more about what other similar projects are doing, you can look here:
And if you find any other links that you think we would find interesting, please let us know!