Tag Archives: cherries

Busy bees

Our bees have been busy working on the spring blossom, first the pears, which flower early in the warmest part of the garden, and then the cherries, and soon the apple blossom. Temperatures last week were high enough to allow a brief inspection of the hives. Of the four that went through the winter, three have survived in excellent condition. They still have plenty of stores left and look to be in good health and particularly large numbers, so we added the supers and everything looks good for a decent harvest this year. The one colony that died out was rather weak going into the winter, so not a loss we are overly worried about. Continue reading

Tidying up the fruit

Over the last couple of weeks we have been tidying up some of the fruit in the kitchen garden. Whilst our orchard trees will be grown as bushes or half standards, along with full sized specimens of chestnut, walnut, and mulberry, all of the fruit in the kitchen garden is trained in some sort of restricted form. Various fruits were in need of attention – the cordon apples and pears were overdue for their summer pruning, the figs in the glasshouse had become rather large and unlikely to be productive next year, and training wires, which should have been in place before planting, are missing in various parts of the garden, some of which we have now fixed. Continue reading

Flowering cherry

I know the weather has been a bit odd of late, but I was more than a little surprised to find a handful of flowers on one of our cherry trees. These were planted a couple of years ago along the boundary fence of the fruit cage, where the netting would keep the birds from stripping the crop before we could get to them. They are still small trees and need a couple more years to develop their complete framework, but the growth that is present is, for the most part, healthy and vigorous. Continue reading

Cordon training of plums

Apples and pears are ideal candidates for cordon training. Oblique cordons were commonly planted along the walls of the traditional walled kitchen garden. Stone fruits, including plums, are more likely to be grown as fans. There exists, amongst some contemporary authors, the notion that stone fruits are not suited for cordon training and will bear poorly if so grown. However, I am not at all convinced about this, and, at least in the case of plums, am fairly sure that one can grow these quite successfully as cordons. Continue reading