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Oakfield Apple Core Club plant final trees in school’s orchard project

THIS July, pupils from Oakfield Academy gathered to plant four bird cherry trees in the playground, with the idea that in years to come, the trees will form a canopy of shade around the outdoor classroom, as well as a haven for wildlife and birds. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The four bird cherry trees complete pupils’ orchard design of a Somerset Wyvern, with trees planted in positions around the school that represent the shape of a dragon.

This special occasion, which took place during the school day, will see the Discovery Orchard swell to include 36 fruit trees, making it still, the largest orchard in Frome!

The National Fruitfull Project, now in its 4th and final year, aims to re-establish local varieties of fruit and to educate children about their heritage by growing fruit trees. The Fruitfull Project funded the installation areas for the trees and the metal tree guards. The installation work, as well as the academy’s new playground play and socialise zone was carried out by local company, Mechanism Landscaping.

The Fruitfull Project ties in nicely with the academy’s Outdoor Play and Learning Project (OPAL) to further enhance the environment and create places for children to learn, socialise and play outside.

Oakfield wishes to thank Jo Barnes of Mechanism Landscaping and Wendy Shillabeer, teaching assistant, who assisted with the planting session.  The academy also wishes to thank Ashridge Nurseries, Castle Cary, who kindly donated the bird cherry trees as part of their own project to, ‘plant a tree make air for free.’

Apple Core Club’s Lottie said of her experiences as part of the Fruitfull Project, “I liked the first session, when I joined Oakfield in year 5, when we planted the first tree at the front of the academy and I met all the other pupils in the Apple Core Club.”

Tom said of his time with Apple Core Club that, “I enjoyed planting the main part of the orchard in the Harmony Gardens, as it was really fun and I learned how to plant a tree!”

This year Oakfield will be hosting Frome Apple Day on 10th November, and organisers say they look forward to welcoming everyone to come along.