OCTOBER 2012 Beaver Scouts learn about the Orchard
Wet weather prevented the Beavers coming to the Orchard to clean and oil the benches before winter as part of their community service, but instead apple-themed evenings were arranged in the Scout Hut. Apple crumble was made and eaten, apples were peeled and tasted, games with an apple theme were played and the song "Johnny Appleseed" rounded off the evening. The leaders worked hard and the boys and girls were full of energy and enthusiasm!
Sept 2012 Montessori school visit again
We hosted another visit from Little Cakes Montessori School, involving the children (aged 2-4) searching for apples on the trees, tasting apples and taking away some local apples to bake into apple crumble (with a little help from the teachers!).
JUNE 2012 Jubilee picnic
After the Saturday morning working party this month we held a picnic to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee. Amazingly, the weather was kind and we gathered by one of the benches to eat delicious shared contributions and drink local elderflower cordial. The Orchard makes a great picnic spot, well away from traffic, so if the weather ever improves do try it out.
MAY 2012 Cubs go wild about Orchard bugs
Having decided that the weather (officially the wettest drought since records began?) meant we didn’t need to water, we set the Cubs to work counting and reporting on caterpillars and other bugs which were attacking the trees. They relished the challenge and provided us with lots of useful information – ranging from “minor munch” to “critical” on one or two trees! All bugs collected were rehomed.
April 2012 - 3 French cherry trees introduced
After much planning and liaising with our twin town Dardilly in France, we were delighted to receive a gift of 3 French cherry trees to mark the twinning of Chorleywood and Dardilly. Our gift to Dardilly comprised 3 crab apple trees, delivered at Easter and ceremonially planted in the Beffe Communal Garden. The addition of the 3 cherry varieties completes the planting plan of 140 trees in Chorleywood Community Orchard. To find the French trees, look for them in positions A1, C5 and C6 near the boundary with the Lawn Cemetery.
December 2011 - 20 more trees planted
On 3rd and 10th December sponsors turned up to plant 20 more trees in the latest phase of planting. The Russell School and Chorleywood Primary School both turned up in force to plant their apple trees, completing the representation of all 3 Chorleywood primary schools in the Community Orchard. The Russell School PTA even managed to press gang Headteacher David Peel to turn up and wield a spade - well done, Mr Peel! As well as apple, cherry and damson varieties planted, 6 cider apple trees were added, holding out the promise (long-term) of Chorleywood cider!
Montessori Visit To Orchard
Chorleywood Community Orchard welcomed a group of children from Little Cakes Montessori School in September. The children played hunt the apples, enthusiastically covering the whole length of the Orchard on their little legs! They also helped peel some fruit with our clever gadget, and enjoyed tasting the resulting apple spirals. The photograph shows them investigating a sample of different apple varieties, comparing the different sizes and colours to be found. They returned to school with a basket of apples, which the teachers then used to get the children involved in cooking.
A number of volunteers manned the Orchard's pitch at Chorleywood's Village Day on the Common this weekend. A suprisingly large number of people were educated as to the existence and location of the orchard with many vowing to drop by and take a look at what goes on with the project. Congratulations to Sue Mander, who won the competition to guess the weight of the apples - the answer was 2lbs 10oz or in metric terms 1,191gms.
On just 4 planting days this Winter (2010/11) we increased the number of trees in the Orchard from 48 to 117. These recent plantings saw the introduction of many more unusual Hertfordshire varieties of apple, as well as the first cherries, plums, damsons and crab apples. Visit our Tree Varieties page for the full list. Tree sponsors who were able came along to plant their own trees, and we also had a wonderful band of volunteers helping out, including representatives from the 1st Chorleywood Cub Scouts. The Watford Observer was also present to take a look at progress at the Orchard - to see their report follow the link here.
Volunteers needed for working parties
We are always looking for volunteers to come along to the Orchard to help with maintenance. we are down there at 10am on the first Saturday of each month for general chores such as watering, weeding & edging. It can be uselful to bring tools such as a fork, edging shears and watering cans. Don't forget your gloves.
Second planting phase a great success
A big thank you to everyone who came to the Orchard on 5th
December 2009 to help plant the second phase of trees. The day was a
great triumph. As the Orchard grows, its size will start attracting
more wildlife and interest from the public. The next phase of planting will take place later this year.
Since we launched the idea of sponsoring trees in the Orchard in late 2008, we have been bowled over by the public’s generous response. Our hope was to cover at least some of the cost of buying and planting trees, ideally keeping pace with the phased planting of the Orchard over 3 years. In fact, we now have to report that the Sponsorship book is closed – just 9 months later – with all trees sponsored.
Grant news - Summer 2009
Three Rivers District Council’s Leisure Committee has recently announced we are to receive a grant of £1,000. This will pay for an apple press and crusher, which will enable us to make our own fresh apple juice – initially from donated apples, but longer-term from the apples grown in the Orchard.
Result of Waitrose Community Matters - Summer 2009
If you shop at Waitrose, Rickmansworth, you may have seen that we were one of the three Community good causes being supported during the month of July. Shoppers posted green tokens in the collecting boxes of the chosen Community projects and we were certainly the most popular. As a result, we received a cheque for £420. Thank you Waitrose and thanks to all the shoppers who voted for us!
The planting of the first 24 trees took place on Saturday 28th February 2009.