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dpack

a more fun question about top fruit

there are about 20 existing apples,all the same but of unknown type(pollination group) as yet,they look like eaters and although probably about 150 yrs old and although a bit neglected and damaged they crop well(and one pear tree)

we have space for between 25 and 30 trees

what fruits should we plant to give variety,a long season and to help conserve some old varieties?

im up for plums,pears,maybe almonds?maybe some other apples (i want russets)but other top fruit are open for suggestion so owt that is tasty and fairly robust for a mildish yorkshire climate

the soil is old and low nutrient at the mo but that can be remedied and it has formed over alluvial clay,it is not boggy or too dry judging by the grass/"weeds" mix,the next area towards town is medieval ridge and furrow so the soil probably has potential for fertility.
tahir

If there's clay underneath then you'll achieve fertility with good mulching (green waste)

The only almonds that'll do are bitter like marzipan; Ingrid and Robijn

Plums (jam)
Yellow pershore - bright yellow jam
Mallard - bright red jam
Heron - darker

Plums (dessert)
Herman - earliest and tastiest early
Early favourite - good early (after Herman)
Methley - Japanese type, same time as EF
Reeves - one of our favourites
Blue tit - good mid season
coes golden drop
Thames cross
Jefferson
Victoria or Mann's no 1 (Mann's is a little earlier)

Varieties I wouldn't plant:

Gypsy
Golden sphere
Manaccan yellow
Brandy gage
Golden transparent gage
Shiro
Early rivers

Apples (dessert):
Red Windsor
St Edmund's russett
Limelight
Discovery
Herefordshire russett
Red devil
Honeycrisp
Bakers delicious

That's all the memorable ones, really need to take my map out at harvest time! You must plant pears but all our good ones apart from Concorde look v similar and I haven't a clue which is which, will try and pay more attention this year
Tavascarow

Quince & Mulberries are two I want to try down here.
Not sure we have a climate suitable for almonds or peaches yet.
A few cider apple varieties would be nice.
& plums & gages are a must for me.
tahir

Peaches are fine apart from peach leaf curl (even on resistant varieties) much better under cover. Quince is very scabby with us
dpack

that is an ace list ,thanks mate
dpack

quince are easily avoided puke_l

i recon we have space for a dozen or so pears though .although they tend to get quite big shading the road and scrappy "lawn" of the offices next door at the north east corner should not be a problem as they wont affect the view from or to the pub

did i mention there is a quite nice pub adjoining the orchard? Laughing rather convenient for a post pruning lunch or "checking the trees" Laughing Laughing Laughing
Mistress Rose

To me quince have a superb flavour, but need cooking or turning into jelly or wine. The plus side is that if someone pinches one and tries eating it, it will put them off rather. Medler is unusual and can be made into some interesting desserts. I think you can eat them raw if they are bletted too. Don't have any experience of mulberry, but it would be interesting and different.

Why wouldn't you go for Early Rivers Plum Tahir? I buy them and quite like them as an early plum.
tahir

Only because Herman and early favourite are both significantly better

Dpack pears will only be the same sort of size as apples nowadays. Where's yummersetter? She's more organised than me, should have more recommendations
Mistress Rose

Thanks Tahir. We don't really have any plums so I have to buy mine and Early Rivers and Opal are the earliest ones I can get.
OtleyLad

The Northern Fruit Group have a big list of fruit grown in and around Yorkshire. Linky to their list.

The Chair, Hilary Dodson, happens to live in Otley. A veritable auhtority on all things fruity. She is advising us about suitable trees in our Community Garden.

They have demonstration gardens on 3 sites, Harewood being the nearest to you. I beleive they have quite a few 'Heritage' varieties from which you coul obtain scions for grafting.
Piggyphile

I am impressed with my Nashi pears, trees not too big so far, ripened on the tree last year and amazing tasting. Out here you can't get known cultivars but they are precocious and look lovely and are bomb proof (so far).
tahir

Which varieties have you got? We have one which isn't brilliant to eat but makes good juice
dpack

thanks folks

the info on pear size is useful,all the ones i have seen are old and huge( 20m seems a bit big )but if they are now reduced by dwarfing rootstocks to 3 to 5 it give much more scope in the layout and makes harvest easier

i will try to have a chat with the otley fruit folk as the climate cant be very different to here.
dpack

this is worse than seed catalogs and an allotment Laughing Laughing Laughing

it looks like we have got a bit closer to making it happen and having looked at prices from maidens to standards im thinking that some of each might be sensible in order to start getting an income sooner in order to cover the running costs

yr one will be minimal income
probably post winter pruning ,deal with moths etc on the existing trees there wont be a decent crop until yr 2/3

how long before a 2 m standard starts to give a reasonable return on the extra price compared to maidens?
yummersetter

Negatives first . . I'm wary of giving you recommendations because my two orchards are so much further south and some of my non-apple trees are borderline for late frost tolerance . . in the open ground away from the house walls I've had no apricots ever, no edible peaches, one japanese plum fruit. Several plums, peaches grapevines and crossbreed plum trees didn't come back to life this Spring even though it wasn't that cold. Mind you, there could have been another reason - these have been orchards for hundreds of years though the newly planted one was stripped of all the remaining old apple trees just before we bought it six years back.. On Google Earth it still shows the old trees and those are the areas where non-apple trees don't thrive, and I think the mouse and shrew colonies that lived under and among the old tree roots are eating the underground parts up to the collar of the new trees. I'm about to exhume the dead trees to be sure
yummersetter

With more enthusiasm - good stuff.

Delicious and special apples amongst the 175 trees growing here:
Red Melba, Rev Wilkes cooker, Fortune, James Grieve (an essential pollinator), Red Windsor, Oaken Pin, Pitmaston Pineapple, Peasgood Nonsuch cooker, Orleans Reinette (russet), Queen Cox, Kidd's Orange Red, Blenheim Orange, our local Somerset Golden Russet. These are in order of ripening.

Plums - Early Transparent, Kirkes Blue, Yellow Mirabelle, Greengage.

Cherries - rarely eaten any as the birds here are fanatic cherry stealers - Vega and Merton Glory worked their unripe loooking fruit trick for one year but the pigeons now know their worth.

Pears - Concorde, Shinseiki, Jargonelle.

I recommend Roy Genders ' Planting Fruit Trees', well out-of-print but sold for pennies online, I think the last edition was in the 1980s.
dpack

thanks

the more info i can absorb the better.

i recon there will be a few russets even if we only add a few new apples and the orleans renette has had a few recommendations:lol: a couple of good cooker types might be a good idea as well so i will check out the options

i still cant identify the existing apple type the only one that seems to match all of 50 odd criteria in an online id key is Esopus Spitzenburg but although it is possible from the age of the trees (over a century at a guess)it seems a bit odd that a hospital orchard in york was planted with a usa variety from the 18th c

i hadnt realised there were about 7000 named varieties until very recently Rolling Eyes
OtleyLad

thanks

the more info i can absorb the better.

i recon there will be a few russets even if we only add a few new apples and the orleans renette has had a few recommendations:lol: a couple of good cooker types might be a good idea as well so i will check out the options

i still cant identify the existing apple type the only one that seems to match all of 50 odd criteria in an online id key is Esopus Spitzenburg but although it is possible from the age of the trees (over a century at a guess)it seems a bit odd that a hospital orchard in york was planted with a usa variety from the 18th c

i hadnt realised there were about 7000 named varieties until very recently Rolling Eyes


If you can take apples (plus a few leaves) to an Apple Day 27-28th September at RHS Harlow Carr, Harrogate there will be people there who can identify them (some at 100 paces!). I did just the same when we first moved here (we inherited a few unknown trees with the house). You can meet the Northern Fruit Group there too.
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