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The apple tree. Benefits from microbes to humans. Courtesy of the Guardian.

A short nice read to inspire.

"I get such a thrill when I see a heavily laden tree ripe with rosy apples. I think of the apples given away, bottled into sauce or made into pies. I think of the blackbirds that so love a rotten fallen apple. I think of the worms, wasps, maggots and microbes that take the rotting flesh back into the soil. I think of the ladybirds that will shelter over winter in the craggy edges of the tree’s bark, and the mistle thrush that will wipe the sticky mistletoe berries off its beak and thus deposit them into hollows where long-gone branches grew. I think of the mason bees and hoverflies that will pollinate the blossom in spring, and of the many moulds, rusts and strange fungi that will inhabit worlds I cannot see over the surface of the tree, both above and below".

A whole world then, growing, being with, resting on and coming to the tree; the tree as a home; the trees as part of your home.


  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 11,126
    How lovely - almost like a poem

    I'm doing my bit - I've got a Scrumptious and a Hertfordshire Russett arriving in 2 weeks :)

    Billericay - Essex

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • punkdocpunkdoc Posts: 14,592
    We have an orchard. The trees are very old and the fruit seems to always be infected, so we don't eat it. However I absolutely love the wild life it brings. We have had the first Fieldfares this year eating the rotten fruit, and a Mistle Thrush regularly nests in one of the trees.
    How can you lie there and think of England
    When you don't even know who's in the team

    S.Yorkshire/Derbyshire border
  • @punkdoc
    I've never fathomed why some apples simply become infected. I have a tiny percentage like that on my old tree. Fortunately 99% ok

    As you say it brings joy in the form of wildlife, which is nice and a positive.
  • Papi JoPapi Jo Posts: 4,024
    Thanks for posting that poetic text, @young codger !
    Here is my modest contribution to the thread, an illustation provided by my favourite (and only) apple-tree, Malus perpetu 'Evereste'. Photo dated 1st January 2021.

    You are invited to a virtual visit of my garden (in English or in French).
  • WoodgreenWoodgreen Posts: 1,273
    Mosses and lichens too take over old apple trees, another example of the life they support.
    I posted this on another thread -- apple 'Arthur Turner' completely covered, barely a couple of inches of clear bark on the branches and twigs. Fascinating.

  • WoodgreenWoodgreen Posts: 1,273
    edited November 2022
    Not the same tree, but this one has provided food and shelter to the countless insects and fungi that have hollowed out it's trunk.

  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,823
    Since Brexit, I have not seen Cox's Orange Pippins or Braeburn on sale, despite their being of French origin so imagine my delight this summer at finding a new nursery being set up by Scots who've left their plant nursery business in Scotland to set up in the Deux-Sèvres just over an hour away.   I now have a Bramley, Cox and Braeburn to plant out and I'll be looking for a crab apple like Everest to help ensure good pollination.

    Looking forward to blossom, foliage, fruits and all the wildlife they attract plus the fun the hens will have when they provide shade and fruits.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Thank you Papi Jo. That clear photo of your apple tree is interesting. The fully ripe apples along side the one or two that didn't make it, together with the crisp winter frost enhancing the picture.
  • @Woodgreen
    That is quite a deep cavity in your tree photo. Is the tree still living? If it is not, we can take solace and be sure it is being host to so many other  lifeforms. 🕊🐿🐤🐀🐞🕷🕸🐜

  • WoodgreenWoodgreen Posts: 1,273
    Yes it is still living @young codger, but I take care not to lean on it! 😊
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