Hackney Permaculture

Pruning and training the grapevine
June 18, 2009, 8:08 am
Filed under: Doing, Learning, Planning, Thinking | Tags: , , , , ,

When we first cleared back some of the undergrowth in the back garden we discovered an old grapevine stump that looked like it was dead. To our delight it started to sprout a tonne of leaves a few months back so todays job was to start training it up a trellis into a fan.

There is some good advice here – http://www.realenglishfruit.co.uk/content/treetraining.htm

Grapevine at the start of day

Grapevine at the start of day

Grapevine after haircut - we cut it back to just two leaders

Grapevine after haircut - we cut it back to just two leaders

Grapevine with leaders tied to trellis

Grapevine with leaders tied to trellis ready to grow into a fan


New apples trees and an old fig tree
February 23, 2009, 10:42 pm
Filed under: Doing | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

This week we took delivery of two apple trees, two gooseberry bushes and twenty two raspberry plants – which is what happens when i get carried away shopping online late at night. If anyone wants a spare raspberry plant do hollar otherwise a spot of guerrilla gardening may be called for to spread the berry love.

What's in this box then?

What's in this box then?

Trees in the post!

Trees in the post! Now where are the instructions?

The apple trees are M27s which you will of course know are ‘very dwarfing’ so will not grow to more than 2 metres high. Just for the record we ordered them from http://www.blackmoor.co.uk/ who were ace…

1 x Raspberry Collection 10 Canes Of Prosen & 10 Canes Of Polka = £19.00
1 x Apple Discovery M27 – 1 Year Maiden Bare Root = £12.45
1 x Apple Winter Gem M27 – 2 Year Bush Bare Root  = £16.00
Sub-Total: £47.45
Best Way (Shipping to United Kingdom (England) : 9.15 kg(s)): £10.00
Total: £57.45

We also gave the fig tree and surrounding plants a good haircut to make a bit of space for new things and to encourage the fig tree to fig.

Look... you can see the fig tree now!

Look... you can see the fig tree now!

Also getting the chop was the hangy stuff growing up the elderflower tree at the back. I can’t remember the names of the hangy stuff but it wasn’t ivy and was rumoured to have pretty flowers. My mum knew what it was called and so did the girls so hopefully I will remember to ask and write it down next time.

Other action has included collecting some unwanted pottery packaging crates to turn into container beds, bringing more bags of compost from the park to join the party, ordering water butts and nice organic seeds, and lots and lots of cutting up pruned bits of plant so it takes up less room and creates a cosy nest for furry animals.

Pruning the Plum Tree
February 16, 2009, 9:49 pm
Filed under: Doing | Tags: , ,

By the looks of things the plum tree has been in trouble for sometime. Jamie gave us some tips on pruning back in the autumn but advised us to leave it until february for the big chop.

Tree haircuts are fun… in fact anything that gives you an excuse to climb things is fun… perhaps that is what ivy is useful for… constantly regrowing so we can keep climbing back up and cut it back again…

Official advice includes pruning tree back to four main bits (boughs I think!) and generally getting rid of anything that looks unhappy. Things to look for include bark condition, branches doing funny things like doubling back on themselves or wrapping themselves around each other… etc etc…

I hope the squirrels let the tree alone this year to bear some plums.


Claudia up the tree


Nacho couldn't resist dropping by from next door to play with tools