Cherry Tree Leaves

Ironically, I always mis-spell Cherry as ‘Cheery’, and this is not so cherry, err, cheery…

…The leaves on the bush cherries, grown on Gisela 5 root stock, have never been great this summer, and this is the typical colouration we’re seeing. The bark seems okay, but the leaves almost look as though they’re entering winter early. Eventually, as can be seen, they drop off. I can’t find any insects on them, save for some cherry slugs (an odd thing, when you crush the cheery cherry slug, it smells like butter!). So far I can not find out what this is – some have suggested a deficiency in the soil, though we’re on good arable land that previously was a wheat, barley, bean rotation – with the odd rape seed thrown in for good measure. It had been limed prior to us grassing it over with a permanent lay (rye grass & white clover mix), and we’ve kept a 1m clearing around the roots, mulched with fresh grass clippings. Any pointers gratefully received!

It’s just occured to me, I don’t suppose the chemicals in the wooden post could cause this?

A Strange Caterpillar

This little blighter was found crawling over one of the fruit trees – I can’t remember which type of fruit tree it was on, I suspect it was the plums as I’ve been keeping a particulary beedy eye on these as the leaves look as though they’ve been nibbled by something – some have numerous holes in the leaves as though nibbled by a beetle, but the damage is more prevalent in the trees being grown as bush trees, though they are on the same St Julien A rootstock the half standard trees are being grown on. I’ll add a picture of the damage soon.

Sprouts, Onions & Fruit Cage

The finished fruit cage in all its glory – new path, mulched with bark and trimmed strawberries. It looks so much happier!

Then we have the onions – these are last year’s winter onions (Japanese onions). The recent bad weather means those from seed are struggling to grow – it’s not looking good, I just hope we have a decent end of year.

The sprouts are doing well though!

Everyone in the Orchard

2012 Everyone in the Orchard

Just a quick video of Suz, Jay, Smiler and Penny in the orchard, from a distance. As the camera pans around you can see the sheep we’ve borrowed to keep the grass down, the base for ‘The Barn’ laid ready (it’s a shed, in reality, but I have delusions of grandeur), then the slabs lain on weed supressing fabric between the raspberries and currants. This is mainly because it was a pain to mow inside the fruit cage, and it will help us keep weeds down as we now have clearly defined edges to mulch to. The entire fruit cage has been shift 2 feet so it now covers the strawberries (sorry Mr and Mrs Blackbird). There is no hardcore under the slabs – everything in the patch is done so that at any stage it can all be lifted and shifted, with nothing put down permanent. If this quarter ever needs to be put to grass again then we can move the entire lot to another place.