In September 2021, the Pembrokeshire Tree Warden Network planted an incredible new orchard at Redhill School, Haverfordwest. Tree Warden Coordinator Mike Higgins explains:
“This is our first new orchard since the easing of Covid-19 restrictions, so it was fantastic to be carrying out planting again. One of our amazing volunteer Tree Wardens, Jennifer Summers, coordinated the orchard planting with the school and arranged for parents and teachers to help the children plant the new trees.
“The new orchard comprises six wonderful varieties of apple tree: Baker’s Delicious, Brith Mawr, Cissy, George Cave, Landore and Pren Glas. All the varieties were grafted by the Applewise Fruit Tree Nursery in Carmarthenshire, Wales, onto MM106 rootstock. This will produce a semi-vigorous tree with an established height of between three and four metres, although the school will be able to manage the trees’ height too and our Tree Wardens will be only too happy to help!
“The volunteer team rpepared the ground for the planting early in the day and after their morning break the children arrived to help plant the trees, as well as adding mulch and watering them all. It was a fantastic day and everyone involved enjoyed the event. The children already have a sense of ownership of the trees and when we had finished I heard one say ‘I want to go and see my tree again,’ which was incredibly pleasing to hear.
“I look forward to our volunteer network revisiting the school in the future to help with the continued care of these wonderful trees.”
If your Tree Warden Network would like to plant an orchard or hedgerow with a school in your area, The Tree Council can help! Our Orchards for Schools programme offers free orchard trees and hedgerow packs to schools across the country and we have a limited number of packs reserved for schools connected with or recommended by their local Tree Warden Network. Read more here!
Alternatively, our Branching Out Fund is available to support schools, community groups and Tree Warden Networks to plant trees, hedges and orchards and applications are open until Friday 17 December. Find out more here.