Established orchards provide a unique wildlife resource in the Irish farm landscape.
Apple and pear trees are hosts to a huge range of insect species, and provide a roosting haven and shelter for birds and mammals throughout the year.
In addition, the blossom is a splendid source of nectar and pollen for bees and other pollinating insects, while the windfall fruit is valued as winter feeding by wild birds and animals alike.
For these reasons, DARD’s Countryside Management Scheme has included a component to support the maintenance or renewal of traditional fruit orchards on farms, an initiative which helps to protect the heritage of orchard plantings on farm.
As part of the skills training schedule within the scheme, CAFRE will be presenting two training events on traditional orchard development and management for farmers, growers and other professionals involved in the Countryside Management Scheme.
These workshops will take place on Friday February 13 2015 at Loughry Campus, Cookstown, and on Friday 20 February 2015 between Enniskillen Campus and Mr Lesley Campbell’s farm near Ballinamallard.
At each event, staff from CAFRE will give detailed presentations on tree planting and establishment, orchard nutrition and health, the pruning and shaping of fruit trees, ecology in the orchard and pollination matters.
If you are an interested farmer or farm business owner and would like to attend either of these workshops, contact CAFRE’s Development Service Admin, Greenmount Campus on 028 9442 6770 or E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org to register for this event.