The production team at Kent’s largest top fruit grower, AC Goatham & Son, have been busy planting trees this year, in fact lots of them… 220,000 so far at their orchards in Medway, Swale and East Kent.
The team, led by production manager Peter Bukowski, have finished planting by hand varieties such as British Royal Gala, Cameo, Conference pears and a new variety of apple.
The new orchards will be finished off in the new year with pollinator trees. These are planted at regular intervals along each row and they help to encourage bees and beneficial pollinating insects into the orchards, which in turn help to pollinate the blossom in the spring.
New orchards are planted in the winter months once harvesting has finished and while the trees are dormant. Bad weather frequently hampers this type of operation, especially one on this scale. AC Goatham & Son has now planted in excess of 1.5 million new fruit trees over the last several years, helping to increase the production of British home-grown apples and pears and displacing the need for imported fruit.