Unexpected discovery prompts Coventry community tree nursery - The Coventry Observer

Unexpected discovery prompts Coventry community tree nursery

Ryan Smith 24th Jul, 2023   0

THE UNEXPECTED discovery of more than 50-year apple blossom trees at an abandoned Coventry allotment has led to a project looking to preserve the city’s trees.

Coventry University researchers Liz Trenchard and Sam Green came across the tree while walking around Charterhouse Park.

The pair were searching for an area for a community tree nursery after applying for funding from the Forestry Commission Tree Production Innovation Fund.

They have now launched the pilot project focusing on preserving heritage apple trees.

After mapping the veteran apple trees and sending off samples, Liz and Sam are now working to apply for funding to locate and preserve heritage apple varieties across Coventry.

The long-term aim is to set up a community-run tree nursery in Coventry.

Liz said: “The benefits of community tree nurseries are that they gather seeds or tree material locally, grow the trees locally and distribute trees locally which reduces the incidence of diseases as we’re not bringing in trees from overseas.

“There are several interesting local Warwickshire varieties including the Wyken Pippin and the veteran apple trees at the Charterhouse site are likely older, heritage varieties. Many are over 50 years old.

“According to the local community, the allotments have not been cultivated for many years.

“We think that they were first created in the 1930s just before the Second World War, but then later abandoned in the 1980s, when the allotments kind of fell out of fashion.”

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