Tyler House East sits in a hidden valley to the far west of Worcestershire. The large farmhouse was once surrounded by orchards, both on its own land and in neighbouring farms. Nearby Tenbury is at the heart of a well known fruit growing area and is famous for its mistletoe fairs, one of the by products of the orchards here.
Most of the land is no longer farmed by the owners, but they have retained the orchards, now rented out to graziers to provide some income and to use the sheep as natural lawn mowers on the steeply sloping hillsides. The steepness of the valley has provided some challenges for volunteers, carrying tools and trees can be hard work !
Some replacement planting had been carried out but had not thrived. It had also been protected by barbed wire and stakes, which had kept out stock and deer but had damaged the trees, some of which had died. The orchard is a remnant of a large Damson orchard, damsons were grown commercially not only for fruit but for natural dye.
TCTOP volunteers have planted young trees in the orchard, which needed gapping up, and have chosen a mix of fruit to give more variety to the crop and to avoid the chance of silverleaf which is a problem here. We have chosen local varieties, including some which have disappeared from the Teme Valley. re-introducing them to the area they came from.