Despite some light drizzle, on Sunday 21 February eight of us – including two new volunteers – tackled the winter fruit tree pruning in the Orchard for the Future. We were dealing with apples, pears etc (stoned fruit like plums needs to be pruned in the summer)
We also planted a strawberry tree in memory of Wendy Mayo, the Clerk to Dodington Parish Council who died last summer. Wendy and her family were frequent volunteers on the Wapley Bushes Local Natire Reserve. Arbutus unedo is a bushy evergreen shrub with red strawberry-like fruits. It’s not related to real strawberries, and it’s not a citrus species – strangely it’s a member of the Ericaceae, in other words the heaths and heathers. Bilberries (European “blueberries”) are also members of this unusual family.
In addition we planted some dog roses in the fence alongside the road, and litter-picked around the Common and the picnic area. Our next Wapley work morning will be on Saturday 19 March.