Jesmond Community Orchard

Events 2016

* Click on Images for Photo Gallery

Cordon 2016 3

Construction of Cordon Frame January 2016

Al and Duncan have constructed the frame for planting the cordon apple trees which West Jesmond Primary School pupils grafted last year. What a lovely south-facing site for this extension to our Orchard.

Watch this space to see the children doing the planting.

See the Photo Gallery for photos of it being constructed

Second Wassailing Event held in the Orchard on 26th January

Because of the success of last year's wassailing event, we planned to hold another one in 2016 but our original event was cancelled due to volume of rain. We managed to re-schedule it for Tuesday 26 January. We were joined by children from West Jesmond Primary School, to welcome the new year with singing and refreshment to encourage our fruit trees to blossom and grow.

Traditionally, the purpose of wassailing is to wake the cider apple trees and chase away the evil spirits to ensure a good harvest of fruit in the Autumn. Wassailing also refers to drinking and singing for the health of the trees in the hope that they will grow and be fertile.

Once we had all gathered together, the Green Man led us to the orchard. We sang and banged drums and percussion instruments to awake the trees and chase the spirits away. Finally we drank mulled apple juice and offered cider to our apple trees. Hope it works!

See the Photo Gallery for more photos

Wassailing 2
west jesmond primary planting 6

Working with West Jesmond Primary on Friday 12th February

After a morning spent preparing the ground with the help of students from Askham-Bryan College, we spent the afternoon with Year 6 pupils planting out the trees they had grafted the previous year. Those we didn't have space for were potted up to sell later.

We had a brilliant day in the sun with lots of hands-on learning.

See the Photo Gallery for more photos

pruning 2016 1

Pruning Course on Saturday 13th February

What a difference a day makes!

Yes it was hailing, but a dozen or so hardy souls came out to prune our apple and pear trees, and practice their skills.

No more photos in the Photo Gallery - for obvious reasons

gardening day feb 2016 1

Gardening Day on Friday 26th February

Held on a Friday afternoon for a change.

A good turn-out for the gardening session today. Weather not too bad and we managed to cut the grass, prune back ivy and other trees, tidy the paved seating area, finish off the fruit pruning and take out prickly, old gooseberry bushes. The Orchard looks neat and ready for spring.

More photos in the Photo Gallery

Grafting JD 1

Grafting Course on Saturday 27th February

This year, our first grafting Course was held in Jesmond Dene Visitor Centre. Thanks to Al and Duncan for their inspiration again. And as for the many varieties - there are some strange and interesting items among the apples, pears, medlars, quinces and plums.

See the Photo Gallery for more photos

Grafting Holy Name 4

Grafting Course on Saturday 12th March

A second Grafting Course was held in the Holy Name Parish Centre. Thanks again to Al and Duncan for their inspiration. Hope all those apples, pears, cherries, plums and quinces are successful.

See the Photo Gallery for more photos

Grafting with West Jesmond 4

Planting and Grafting with West Jesmond & St Catherine's Primary Schools

On 12 February, we had an active day planting out the grafted apple trees that West Jesmond School students created last year, with the same group of children (Year 6 now) and some students from Askham-Bryan College.

On 9 March, we spent a day grafting all sorts of fruit trees with the brilliant children of Year 4 at West Jesmond Primary School. Approximately 90 children created 42 grafts of apples, pears, quinces and medlars.

On 14 March, we spent a lovely sunny morning grafting fruit trees with children from Year 3 at St. Catherine's Primary School. Now their gardening club will look after them until they can be planted out.

See the Photo Gallery for more photos

Open Day 2016 2

Open Day on Sunday 8th May

During the Festival, we held an Open Day at the Orchard, with lots of activities for all the family. Activities included making garden sprites, snail races, treasure hunt, stories and butterflies.

See the Photo Gallery for photos

AGM 2016

AGM held on Wednesday 29th June at Jesmond Community Library

Those attending voted on the best name for the apple seedling grown from a pip from the "Flower of Kent" apple, under which Sir Isaac Newton was first struck by the theory of Gravity. The name selected was Flower of Jesmond. There's no certainty that this little apple tree will produce edible apples (quite unlikely in fact), but it will be a curiosity. After the business and a presentation about this year's activities, there was Cider Tasting again. Overall, a very convivial evening at Jesmond Library to celebrate another year of the Orchard.

Gardening Day August 2016 3

Gardening Days in July and August

We pruned the stone fruit (plums, cherry, apricot) and weeded around the orchard and the school fruit trees. Unfortunately the damson in the orchard has been removed because it was badly diseased. Everything else is growing strongly.

See the Photo Gallery for more photos

Another Gardening Day on 9th October

Preparing for Apple Day the following weekend.

See the Photo Gallery for more photos

Apple Day on Saturday 15 October

This year we celebrated our 6th annual Apple Day with participatory juicing, lots of apple-based foods, games, stories, apple identification, beekeeping and, of course, the wonderful Bargett’s barrel-organ.

So many families turned up to have a go at shooting the apple off William Tell’s head and turning the screw on the fruit press and crusher.Another great event and lots of fun.

See the Photo Gallery for photos

apple day 2016 8

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