UCD houses a collection of all known varieties of heritage Irish apple trees which has been built up over the course of several decades. They have kindly allowed Santry Community Garden to take cuttings from these trees (scion wood) for the purpose of grafting so that we can create a collection of these heritage trees for our orchard.
We have collected cuttings from all established varieties from UCD (over 80 varieties) and will graft these to rootstock in the garden on Sunday the 24th February.
The process will involve:
1) preparing the timber cuttings (scion wood)
2) learning about rootstock and the different varieties available
3) preparing the rootstock to take the graft
4) grafting the scion wood to the rootstock
5) fixing and sealing the graft
6) planting up the newly grafted trees in specially prepared nursery beds.
7) Maintenance and aftercare
We are very lucky to have an expert on hand (David Howell) who will demonstrate how all stages of the process are to be performed and provide training for members attending. All materials will be provided by Santry Community Garden.
It is a great opportunity to learn a new skill and to work with a collection of heritage Irish trees - many of which are very rare and but for the work performed by UCD would no longer be available. All members are very welcome to participate and will be provided with the opportunity to learn all stages of this wonderful craft.
If the grafting is successful, Santry Community Garden will be host to only the 4th copy of this collection of traditional Irish apple trees in existence which will be a great privilege for the garden and provide the Orchard with a fabulous centre piece and allow us to contribute to ensuring the future of this wonderful part of the country's gardening heritage.
We will be beginning the training from 11 on Sunday morning. Looking forward to seeing as many of you who can make it.
All the best,
The SCG Committee