We have over 500 trees at the present in the original planting of English & Black Walnuts, Heartnuts, Buartnuts & Butternuts all grafted cultivars, in addition Pecans, Hickories, Hicans and other Carya & Juglans species, list below! We have another 40-50 trees planned for this coming winter.
A new orchard in a higher site consisting of 311 trees was planted in the early part of 2023, a mix of 6 main cultivars – Chandler, Fernette, Fernor, Franquette, Lara & Tulare.
The main commercial planting of named grafted trees started in 2013 and the majority of the older trees have been supplied by Nick Dunn of Frank P. Matthews in Worcestershire. These trees come as pot grown 2 year old trees (up to 2m+ tall) and many start producing a few nuts within a year or so. We already had some fairly mature seedling walnut trees that are mostly good croppers of normal smaller nuts.
The bottom part of the orchard has been planted with Lara, Fernor, Fernette, Franquette with some trial varieties interspersed to aid pollination. 13 varieties with known pedigree (in other countries at least) make up over 90% of the planting with the remaining trees being trial varieties mainly from Northern Europe that we think will prove to be good future commercial trees in our climate. These include nuts from France, Bulgaria, Hungary, Austria, Poland, Germany , Czech Republic etc. A good number are specialist red fruited varieties and many have probably not been planted in the UK before. They have they own specialist use with patisseries etc.
We’re looking for trees that consistently produce good crops of relatively large nuts (32mm across or more) with a high oil content, good kernel colour, easily shelled and good resistance to disease. At this point in time we’re still only starting to evaluate all these varieties, even the well known ones, as there is very little known about most varieties in UK conditions and we all have our own micro climates around the UK and what works in Kent or Somerset for example may also succeed here or be a relative failure and we monitor them through the year and keep data on all of them for future use.
Below is the list of all the trees currently in the ground.