Managing mini orchards for Modbury
Our Sites. We have three mini orchards in Modbury:
1. 12 local Devon fruit trees in the Modbury Millennium Meadow were planted in 2008. The trees were sourced from Thornhayes nursery and planted by pupils of Modbury primary school. The site is a steep, very small field abutting housing at Alyestone Park and Tuckers Brook with fields to the north. It is accessed via a narrow alley from Burn’s Lane, a cul de sac beside the Co Op supermarket. The site is managed by a small band of dedicated volunteers and is funded from a grant given by South Hams District Council to the Parish Council. We hope to enthuse a new group of volunteers to plant and manage the neighbouring pocket of land, which abuts houses on Galpin street; to plant 15 to 20 local fruit trees.
2. 10 local fruit trees were planted at the QE2 playing fields in 2013. This mini orchard now has a fire pit and is integral to the trim trail, tennis, football and sports facilities and next to the MARS sports pavillion; and has the use of these facilities when open or hired. The site is managed by the volunteers at MARS and Eco Land Management.
3. Six local fruit trees were planted in the school playing field last winter. Each class planted a tree. It is hoped that a dozen or more cordon trees will also be planted against a fence this winter. The school is actively embracing the forest school ethos and is creating an educationally more interesting, inspiring and ecologically diverse playing field, which this mini orchard is part of.
We had our first Apple Day pressing apples from the community orchard in 2016. We gave away (in exchange for donations) most of the juice on behalf of St Luke’s Hospice and kept 12 bottles to freeze. This was then mulled and served for free at the first Wassail this January. Over a hundred people came to the wassail, most, including the leader having never been to one before. However thanks to the Growing Orchard Communities wassail workshop and toolkit we held a very successful event, including wassail songs rehearsed by the children, a blessing by the Vicar, wassail libation from the May King and Queen, calls from the town crier and hot dogs and candle lighting from the Cubs, Beavers and Scouts.
We don’t have any websites for any of the orchards, but let the community know about events like Apple day and Wassail via the monthly Modbury.