It was a day to celebrate when residents planted our very own Wish Park Orchard on a sunny day on January 7 2012. A host of local people turned out to get involved in the planting of six different varieties of Sussex apple trees and two plum trees alongside the community garden.
The new additions to the park were provided at a greatly reduced cost by Brighton Permaculture and their partners Action in Rural Sussex, who promote the growing and harvesting of local fruit. Two of their team – Bryn and Stephan – came along to help dig and plant the trees, assisted by many children and adults.
Park Rangers Chantelle and Paul brought logs from Stanmer Nurseries to create a ‘stag mansion’ – an ideal shelter for stag beetles and other mini-beasts. Local children joined in with the digging, learnt about a flammable fungus called King Alfred Cake and identified beetles which we hope will be attracted to the new habitat.
Robin van Creveld, the Community Chef, set up his kitchen outside the pavilion and prepared delicious apple and butternut squash soup, apple and vegetable stir-fry with goat’s cheese on flatbreads, and drop scones with caramelised apple and vanilla cream – wonderful and much appreciated after all the digging.
The sun shone and helped make this a very successful start to the new year. The orchard is part of the Wish Park Residents Association’s plans to bring more variety to the park, while continuing to provide facilities for footballers and cricketers.