mitcham cOMMUNITY orchard & GARDEns
The creation of Mitcham Community Orchard, led by Sustainable Merton in partnership with Merton Council as part of the Dig Merton initiative, inspired 200 residents and 12 local partners and businesses to help transform a derelict area of spare land into an award-winning community orchard with 30 different varieties of fruit trees, 7 raised beds, ponds, a soft fruit collection and a wildflower meadow.
The site’s development continues and it has been used for numerous barbecues and parties by local residents and groups. The orchard is a community and educational resource to be enjoyed by everyone and we need the help of local volunteers to keep it growing strong.
For more information, please contact Katie at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As part of the habitat plan to develop the site to be more welcoming to wildlife the following projects have been started.
Three wildlife ponds are now installed in a complex in the corner near the currant bushes. They are optimised for wildlife, using banks with holes and crevices and planted with British native aquatic plants. We hope to attract toads, frogs and a host of colourful insects, such as damselflies.
We have now planted 120 metres of hedgerow around the site, which will grow into and around the current chestnut paling fence whilst it is establishing. As well as providing a valuable habitat for wildlife, the hedgerow is comprised of edible bushes - hazel, blackthorn, elder, dog rose and crab apples. This was achieved through a donation of 420 saplings from the Woodland Trust, planted with the help of over 40+ volunteers.
We have now seeded almost 100m2 of wildflower meadow as part of our habitat plan. This will provide a valuable habitat for wildlife such as butterflies, moths and bees. The wildlife ponds abut this area, bringing together our biodiversity habitat plan.